The Consumer Complaints Blog

Fighting the trained monkey in modern society.

October 30, 2011

Enbridge Account Direct Energy Complaint

Filed under: Service Based — Editor @ 10:10 pm

In October 2010 my house was sold as a part of divorce proceedings. All Utilities were contacted. On or around November 2011 I learned that the Home Care Plan had been transferred to my Rental property. Direct Energy was phoned and they were adamant that a cancellation fee of about $350.00 must be paid to do this. I paid the account in full with no recourse to split the costs with my ex-husband. As a single mother this took food out of my children’s mouth.

Imagine my surprise when I discovered in February 2011 that they were still billing me $37.28 for protection I paid to cancel! I phoned and explained that everything had been cancelled. Confirmation #15548701 was given. Then on March 22nd, 2011 another bill was received with a small credit of $4.29 for HST and additional charges of $37.84 including HST and a late fee! I called again and Mark ID 66855 confirmed yet again with confirmation #15121708. I just received a collection letter from Enbridge for $83.43. Enbridge confirmed that is was the Direct Energy Home Charges and they had not stopped billing me. Total owing is now $121.96. Enbridge kindly put it on 50 day collection hold prior to commencing further action to give Direct Energy time to contact them.

Just spent over an hour with Direct Energy Agent Carrie ID-66744 who has now referred me to customer care with confirmation number 16668644. And now am waiting a phone call in about 24 hours. They said this was Enbridge’s fault because the account was never closed.

I have no hope now that this will be resolved without additional help. Could you please be of assistance in helping me clear my good name and account?

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.


Filed under: Service Based — Editor @ 10:09 pm

This complaint was removed at the original poster’s request. The company apparently resolved the issue in exchange for removal of the post. We would like to congratulate Junk Van for taking care of the issue and their customer. It is a sign of what all businesses should do. It’s better to take care of a customer than create a mess to be cleaned up later on. Nice work Junk Van and congratulations to the customer that had their customer service complaint resolved. We wish both parties the best of luck moving forward.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

Canada Satellite

Filed under: Service Based — Editor @ 10:08 pm

Since I can’t find any other appropriate place to air my grievances, I thought I’d do it here. Thanks for the opportunity!

I recently learned that the satellite phone industry is like a pyramid scheme, with no accountability. I rented a sat. phone for 6 weeks for a remote field work contract. I am in BC and dealt with a company in Alberta. They had good prices and could supply the phone on short notice. I purchased 50 minutes of calling time with the intention of just using it for emergencies and texting. I was told that I shouldn’t worry about using up the minutes, as “they usually give you extra minutes above what you pay for”.

I should have listened to my gut right from the start, because it was hard to get information about the phone from the guy. He either didn’t know what he was doing or, as I now believe was deliberately misleading me and making me feel like everything was straight forward and easy.

So, I agreed to the deal, gave them a credit card # for a $500 deposit, and they sent me the phone. I got the phone in good time. I was happy with the response. However, there was no contract, no paperwork at all, not even a user manual. I had no time to deal with it, and so headed out on my trip. I discovered after testing it out, that the messaging system wasn’t set up. I then spent several hour making playing phone tag on a payphone trying to get the right #s to put into the phone. The guy didn’t know the numbers and had to contact the service provider. The numbers (“It’s either this one or this other one.”) didn’t work. I found what I thought was the right number on the service companies’ website, but that didn’t work either. So, I never was able use the messaging system.

The sat service was great and helped me out of some jams. It was also a good life-line while out it in the bush. When my work was over, I was to mail the phone back to the company. I wasn’t given any instructions on how to do this, and as it took me over a week to get a hold of anybody, I know had an extra 2 weeks of rental time, when I never used or even needed the phone! I had to pay about $25 for insurance to cover the cost of the phone if it got lost, and I had to buy the packaging to mail it.

That was it…for awhile. No response at all from the company that they received the phone. No bill for the rental. Nothing.

I was busy and couldn’t follow up until I got home, and I figured, hey, if they don’t want to bill me, fine, I’ll take a free rental any day!

2 months later…I remembered the credit card deposit and got worried. I checked, and indeed the $500 was taken out! After a week, and them not returning my messages, I finally got a hold of Mr. Clueless (AKA Mr. Scam), and asked him what was up. Why no bill? Why take the $500 that was just a deposit?

Here’s the stupefying answer…”Well, there are over $700 in call charges, so we figured we do you a favour and just keep the $500 and call it even.”

That’s pretty weird. You told me that the card had extra minutes, not that it was open ended. I purposefully bought low minutes time to keep the expense low. I know I was careful with my usage, and (I thought) the phone’s counter was telling me that I was within an acceptable usage. Regardless, why isn’t there a bill?

“If we send you a bill, we’ll have to charge you the over $700.” (huh??!!! A does not just equal C…there’s something missing and it’s called logic.)

I think it’s my right as a consumer to receive a bill. Can’t you just send me a bill for $500? Anyway, I need to see the details. I need to verify that what you are telling me is correct.
“Well, we’d have to get a call record from Iridium, and they charge like $200 or something. It’s pretty expensive, but we could go ahead and do that.”

Woah, woah…c’mon! how can a call record cost anything at all? That’s like the phone company charging me for my bill that shows me all the calls that I made including the duration!!
“Tell you what, we could look into our records and get the start and finish times on the phone for that period. It’ll take a few days, but we could do that for you.”

Wow, could you? I mean, that would be great to actually see the information that leads to a bill that is over double what I agreed to in the first place. Did I say “bill”, oops, I meant verbal charge. I hung up, confused and starting to feel (once again in my life) like an industry-raped consumer. Couldn’t they just come up with numbers that fit what they are telling me? How can I trust this guy and anything that he sends me now?

Not being satisfied with anything anybody tells me, I called Iridium. They were quite nice and agreed that what I was told wasn’t right. They were only able to tell me who the service provider was that the dealer buys from. I contacted the service provider too. They have said that they could help me if I had a SIM card…well, that’s nice, but it’s a rental; the dealer has the SIM card, not me. What I have learned quite quickly is that companies like Iridium own the satellites and sell service to service providers, who in turn sell direct to consumers (usually large companies) and to dealers (such as losers in Alberta like the one that I am dealing with). Their are no policies or guidelines that the consumer is allowed to access, and the /dealer/ can charge whatever they want for call logs. In fact, it’s the /service provider/ that provides call logs, not Iridium, as I was told, and that it’s up to the dealer how much one is charged for. ( I smell a scam. I’m beginning to think that the dealer is deliberately misleading me.)

My mistake (and theirs) from the start was to go ahead without a contract; without signing anything actually! So, neither of us has a leg to stand on. How can I fight any charge at all without a written agreement, /but/…how can I be responsible for charges, when I didn’t sign anything stating so?

I’m in the middle of this process, so it remains to be seen where it goes from here. All I can say is NEVER use Canada Satellite!

I’ll post again when there is an update.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

Direct Energy Tank Return Gone Bad

Filed under: Service Based — Editor @ 10:07 pm

Penciltrick Team:

I do believe the pen is mighty. So I wrote a complaint letter to Direct Energy about my ordeal hoping to deal with this privately. However, the response I received motivated me to make this issue public. Please refer to the attached letter.
I got a call September 21, 2011 from Donna, who made the following comments regarding my letter:

– Donna said there were two departments at that location, one that worked until 4 pm and the other until 6 pm supposedly to process tank returns. I can confirm there was NO ONE THERE after those two employees left. I banged on the back door and the front doors were all locked and lights were out.
– Donna said she would forward the letter along with an email to the Brampton office. So the Brampton office doesn’t even know about this, and she did not mention anything about what will happen to those two employees in question.
– Donna said it was my choice to hire someone to help me with the tank so there will be no reimbursement. I would have gladly paid the $50 out of pocket, but because Direct Energy failed to processed my tank return, I paid $50 for someone to do NOTHING. The task was not completed and it was not the fault of myself nor my hired help.

So needless to say, Donna did not call to provide any resolution to my concerns, but rather to make excuses and confirm that Direct Energy’s customer service can be just as bad at head office.

Can you help?


August 28, 2011

Direct Energy Home Services
Customer Care
80 Allstate Parkway
Markham, Ontario
L3R 6H3

Dear Sir or Madam:

I am writing with regards to my recent experience returning a water heater tank.

I had a new water heater installed in my home on Saturday August 27, 2011 and on the same day decided to return my old tank to Direct Energy Home Services. I had called your company beforehand to obtain details of the drop off location, hours of operation and the return process. I also hired someone to assist me with carrying the bulky and heavy tank. We arrived at the Brampton Direct Energy Home Services location just before 4 p.m. and found all the doors to the store were locked and the lights out. I was confused, because I was positive that the customer service (CS) agent had told me that the location was open on Saturdays until 6 p.m. and the sign outside the store confirmed this. I called the CS line to inquire and was assured that the location should be open for business. While I was on the phone, I saw a woman rush out of the store. I quickly intercepted her and asked her if the store was open and she replied “no”, I then asked if it would still be possible to process a water heater tank return. She brushed me off telling me that there is still someone at the back of the building that will process my return and then rushed into her vehicle and left. We drove to the back of the building to find a man getting into a Direct Energy branded van. I walked up to his moving van and tapped on his window signalling him to lower his window so that I could speak to him. Not only did he refuse to lower his window, he waved me off and sped away while I was only a mere inches of his vehicle. We also knocked at the back doors and rang a doorbell to see if there may still be anyone else inside the store, but we received no answer. I called CS immediately and related the entire incident to Erin and also to Bob at Customer Care. While Bob was kind enough to arrange complimentary pick up of the water heater tank, I feel that the issue has not been totally resolved:

First, I ask that the two employees at the store be severely reprimanded if not terminated. Their actions were absolutely unacceptable as front line employees. Neither employee I saw that day wanted to take ownership of a simple water heater tank return, and just passed the buck or refused to even hear me out. I may add that I was not under any impression that either of them were leaving due to any emergency, but rather seemed eager only to leave work. If they are so unwilling to do the work they are hired to do, then they really should not be hired at all.

I do not have the names of the two employees but I can describe the woman as Caucasian, with reddish-brown curly shoulder length hair and drives a Jeep Grand Cherokee. The man is South Asian, bald with a mustache. As far as I know, those two were the only employees at the Brampton location until 4 p.m. that day.

Secondly, the management of that location must be thoroughly reviewed. My tank return should have been processed as I arrived well within operating hours. I trusted the information that was provided by your company and based on that I made arrangements to return the tank. Clearly, the employees at the Brampton location do not respect the stated operating hours, and failed to deliver on customer service. I can tell that customer service training is apparent at the call centre, but somehow the training is sorely lacking at the store. The disconnect needs to remedied, as it only takes one bad customer experience to taint further dealings with a company. I also question if the managers at the store are aware that they have employees who claim to work all day only to shirk their working hours yet still expect to be paid in full. I am sure you can agree that an inefficiently-run store wastes resources and ultimately impacts the bottom line of the entire company.

Lastly, I had mentioned at the beginning of my letter that I had hired someone to help me return the tank. Obviously, the task was not completed as intended and his time was wasted with the added exercise of having to unload the tank back into my garage for pick up. I was required to pay him $50 regardless for his time and effort. I kindly request reimbursement for the said amount, which has been an inconvenient ordeal for both him and myself.

Your attention to my concerns would greatly appreciated. I would also like to hear from you soon regarding the resolution of the aforementioned issues. If you would like to discuss this further, I can be reached at (NUMBER REMOVED).


Helen (last name and address removed)

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

September 13, 2011


Filed under: Service Based — Editor @ 7:46 am

All I wanted was to know, in the shortest time possible, whether I could get Internet. At my house. As advertized!

Taylor: Hi. I’m a live TELUS product specialist. What questions can I answer for you?
Taylor: Just type your question below.
You: hi, can you verify that I can get Internet service to my apartment please. Online tool says ‘could not determine’
Taylor: I can try. May I have the address to check on it?
You: #…, 211 – …th St NE, Calgary, AB T… ….
Taylor: Thank you for waiting. For this address, we will need to verify with Client Care.
Taylor: Client Care can provide you with the help you need. Please call our toll-free telephone number by dialing 1-866-558-2273.
Taylor: You can also call 310-2255 to speak with Client Care directly.
Taylor: Is there anything else I can help you with today?
You: ? I have to call in? I don’t have the 25 mins to wait on hold – which is what I did yesterday
You: 🙁
Taylor: Sorry for that though for your address, we will need to call it in.
You: what’s the issue?
Taylor: Just additional verification.
You: ?? could you please elaborate before I re-invest my time. isn’t the address complete? i don’t understand what verification you need
Taylor: The system shows both TV service available. We will need to check what TV service is better on that area.
You: ? but I just want Internet. Internet only. no upsell needed
Taylor: Yes, that is true though to get internet, we use the same system to check availability for all services. Since it is not displaying the results on your end, we will need to verify it with Client Care for us to be able to offer you packages that is really available in your area, not what we think is available.
You: And what does Client Care do that you don’t? I’m still confused as to why I should risk listening to muzak on a Friday!
Taylor: They are able to check on service available in your area using 3 tools thereby getting an accurate result.
You: am i getting spin here, because that just sounds crazy.
Taylor: Anything you know that we don’t?
You: ??? huh???
You: I know that spending 25 minutes on hold would make most people pretty frustrated, and that anybody with even a good level of tech awareness – people such as you and me – don’t appreciate what sounds like spin in place of intelligent accurate answers.
Taylor: Please call Client Care.
You: And Taylor, …what’s your specific Rep ID please?
Taylor: It is ………………..
You: and what channels do I follow to reference this conversation and the ‘anything you know’ comment?
Taylor: You can use the date and time of the conversation, the ID and my name.
You: Which department (complaints resolution) are you in/attached to?
Taylor: We are with the Chat Support Department.
You: cool. Thanks. Weird conversation but …
Taylor: You’re welcome.
Taylor: Thank you for visiting TELUS. It has been a pleasure assisting you.
Taylor: Please feel free to chat with us again.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

« Previous PageNext Page »