I took delivery of a Mesh M2600 AV back in March. From the start, it wouldn’t shut down properly – I had to flick the master power switch at the back of the unit to turn off the fans. I discussed the problems, amongst others, with staff at Mesh. By early April, the computer had started to shut itself down with ever-increasing frequency. Mesh staff were helpful at this stage and we tried all the usual measures – but it got to the point where I could not even re-format the drive at the outset of a full reinstallation of Windows XP without the unit shutting down (although the fans kept running like hairdryers on steroids). So, the base unit had not worked properly from the start and ultimately had to be returned to Mesh, a company that currently offers a back to base warranty scheme. I also sent a letter that set out the facts and asked for appropriate compensation; Mesh technicians knew, because of our various telephone calls, that the computer had been faulty since it was first delivered.

Following some phone calls from me, Mesh eventually looked at my base unit roughly 2 weeks after it arrived at the workshop. Subsequently, Mesh technicians confirmed that there were faults with a range of system components, including the PSU. We then entered a rather ridiculous period of a few weeks during which I tried the get the computer returned to me. Having been fixed (built properly for the first time!) the unit remained in the Mesh workshop for a further couple of weeks until my wife called one day. No satisfactory explanation for Mesh’s inaction was offered but she was persuaded to pay almost £50 for the computer to be returned, despite the fact that Mesh knew that the computer had been improperly built and tested, and knew that the key power problem had been present from the start. Mesh had also refused, rudely, to respond to my first letter or even to acknowledge it (I guess that’s one way of getting your way – just refuse to communicate with customers). I then had a subsequent conversation with Mesh staff and, anxious to have a computer here again, agreed to deal with the delivery charge retrospectively. The base unit, I was promised, was on the way.

Or so I thought. After another couple of weeks, I received a telephone call from Mesh asking me what I wanted them to do with the computer. Should I have laughed or cried? I suggested gently that they might perhaps like to return it to me in line with the traditional approach. I also suggested that they might like, at least, to consider refunding the delivery charge. I had paid and Mesh had not delivered. I was promised a call back that day, presumably following a discussion between the person I had spoken with on the telephone and a grown-up. No call. No surprise. (Why waste time on support when there are sales to be made?)

So I wrote to Mesh again. No reply again. They refused to offer any explanation or apology for the fact that I still, in the middle of June, did not have my computer.

That’s about it. The computer eventually turned up. No correspondence, no explanation, no apology. And not the slightest hint of courtesy or professionalism in their ‘customer care’ arrangements. There are worse cases, I know, and this only cost me the delivery charge, some telephone charges and denial of service from my computer for a few months. But I would like to recoup the delivery charge and there might be lessons here about back to base support agreements and about the contempt that some, though not all, leading vendors seem to have for customers once they have paid their money. As for Mesh – never again.

  spuds 14:24 10 Oct 04
  Forum Editor 18:18 10 Oct 04

and on the face of it you have every reason to feel disgruntled.

Under current consumer legislation any fault which manifests itself within the first six months after purchase is deemed to have existed at the point of sale, unless the supplier can demonstrate otherwise. In your case you would have been within your rights to reject the computer as unfit for its purpose when the fault(s) occurred.

You should not have been required to pay a return charge in any event, and i suggest that you contact the email address supplied by spuds. Mesh usually respond fairly quickly to these threads, and I'm sure that someone will be in touch with you soon.

I assume the computer's OK now?

Dear Editor, Many thanks for this. I have emailed Mesh - it will be interesting to see if they'll corespond with me now.

...oh, and the computer is OK now, thank-you for asking.

Three weeks have now passed and Mesh still refuse to contact me. I am staggered - I wouldn't have thought that a company like Mesh would adopt a strategy like this. It really appears that they seek to make complaints go away by refusing to acknowledge them, or the customers making them. Sadly, I expect they are successful in many cases.

So I would be grateful for a bit more advice. Where do I go from here? Trading Standards? Court? I would obviously like to recoup the delivery change. I would also be grateful for advice regarding this strategy of refusing to corespond with customers they (presumably) don't like.

I would be grateful for any advice you can offer.

  Forum Editor 09:32 31 Oct 04

on the matter in hand, which is that you want to get Mesh to refund the cost you incurred in returning your computer to them - and usually the best way of doing that is to contact them yourself.

I personally doubt that there's any Mesh policy of deliberately failing to respond to complaints - unless of course said complaints are made in an abusive or aggressive way. Nobody has to put up with that kind of thing nowadays, and I would also refuse to respond in those circumstances. I am not for one moment suggesting that you have adopted that approach of course, but it's always worth underlining.

Your alternative is to seek redress via the small claims court, but I honestly wouldn't take that route for £50 myself - I would pursue the personal contact method, using the address spuds provided.

  MESH Support 09:55 01 Nov 04

Every email we receive in our service inbox is responded to in one way or another. It is one of the reasons that I am at this time slightly behind in responding to them.

I can see from my records I responded to your email on the 19th of October.

I will arrange to have an engineer now call you to help move your long delayed problems forward.

If your not receiving my email is due to anything under our control, I apologise and would hope you understand that we will rarely find out that an email has not been received until it is too late.


Mesh Support

  david.h 15:56 01 Nov 04

I do not have a mesh. But its good to have a mesh rep reading the forum and getting involved.

Any chance of FE inviting other companies to do similar it may well help end some of the night mares some readers get into when buying products when it all goes belly up on them

  spuds 17:05 01 Nov 04

The FE doe's invite other companies to join the forum, but whether they choose to join is another matter. Some companies have joined, but after a couple or so responses they seem to disappear.Mesh have been one of the regulars, and have stuck with it, which deserves praise.

  Danoh 11:28 02 Nov 04

PCs are complex by nature of its open component architecture, so there will always be issues. Its how those are addressed which counts.

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