One of the parts on my beloved Aeron chair broke:
I looked on their site to see if their products have a warranty, and.. they do! Woo! It says right on their site:
“The Herman Miller Warranty is a statement of our confidence in the quality of our products. It’s a straightforward promise to our customers that we stand behind that quality, 100 percent–100 percent of the time.”
Well, apparently “100 percent–100 percent of the time” actually means… “100 percent– some of the time” since when I contacted their authorized repair center, they emailed me back:
“The 12-warranty only covers the original owner, once resold the warranty would be denied by Herman Miller.”
Uh.. What? That’s kinda f’d up, no? I mean, yes, I’m the 2nd owner of this chair, but why should that make any difference as to the warranty?? The chair is still a G-E-N-U-I-N-E Herman Miller Aeron Chair as far as I can tell. I mean, yes, I could just buy the part.. but, this is about the principle of the thing at this point.. grr.
So, I wrote them a nice letter of my own…
I am a happy owner of an Aeron chair. Recently, the lumbar pad on my chair has fallen apart, as you can see from this photo:
Anyway, I contacted Chair MD, and they informed me that your 12-year warranty does not cover me since I am the 2nd owner of this chair.
The label on my chair says:
Model # AE123AWB AJG1BBWP 3D01
Born-on date: 1999-05-18
Factory Order #: 493715
So, clearly, this chair is well within the 12-year warranty period, so I am writing to ask why it is that the warranty does not cover this chair. Is the warrantly less valid since I am not the original owner?
Isn’t it still the same chair?
I mean, if you buy a used car from somebody, the warranty goes with that car (and that makes sense).
Anyway, it’s really not the money ($65 for a new pad isn’t bad, I guess), but I really would just like an explanation, since the reasoning befuddles me.
So we’ll see what they say…
Well.. I got a reply from Herman Miller…
Hello Dennis and thank you for contacting Herman Miller. We do have a 12-year warranty on the Aeron chair, but the warranty only extends to the original purchaser of the product when it is ordered through an authorized Dealership. The warranty does not transfer. I have included the verbage from our warranty below:
Brandon McElfish/Herman Miller
Way to NOT ANSWER ANY OF MY QUESTIONS in my original email. I am fairly good at the google, and I was able to find that warranty information myself (as I explained in my email).
Honestly, I just want someone from HM to email me and say something like “Yes, we know our warranty policy is ridiculous, and we only stand by our products if you buy them from authorized retailers because we do not care about the re-sale people.” I mean.. yah. Come on.
If I am being ridiculous here, someone please tell me.
So, I wrote Herman Miller:
Thanks for your reply!
As I stated in my original email — yes, I am familiar with your
warranty policy, so you did not answer my question.
I am simply inquiring as to *why* your warranty policy is this way?
Warranties for other durable goods like automobiles stay with the
I am still sitting on a quality-made Herman Miller Aeron chair, no?
And then they wrote back (super quickly, I might add…):
Hi Dennis, our original owner policy has been in place from the beginnings of Herman Miller as a company. I think you would find that there are very few products on the market where a warranty
coverage is passed on to the second owner of the product. That includes several automobile manufacturers.
Herman Miller Inc.
Hmm.. that sounds like a classic “cuz that’s the way it is” answer.
I mean, I kind of expected more from Herman Miller, but… oh well. I mean, it’s not really the money, I can find a new lumbar support (a $65 part) on eBay for pretty cheap, but like, why have a warranty at all if you’re not going to honor it?