Why Is Lowe’s Customer Service So Bad? (7 Reasons Why)


Why Is Lowes Customer Service So Bad

The Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns inspired many people to do home improvement projects. That meant ordering supplies from stores such as Lowe’s.

If you’ve had people trying to dissuade you from using Lowe’s, you might wonder what makes their customer service so awful.

Lowe’s customer service is bad due to the attitude of overworked store employees. Most Lowe’s locations are severely understaffed, dividing most of the work among the remaining employees. When a customer asks them for help, they’re ready to snap.

Remember that stress is no excuse for providing awful customer service. Let’s examine further the other reasons that make Lowe’s customer service terrible.

Why Is Lowe’s Customer Service So Bad?

For national retailers, lousy customer service is usually contained in one store. All you have to do is to visit another branch, and you’ll receive much better service. 

But for Lowe’s, reports of subpar customer service seems to be a widespread problem. It’s not just confined to one or two specific locations – it’s multiple ones across several states.

That kind of experience all over the country earned them a bad reputation.

So why is Lowe’s customer service so awful across the board? Let’s look at a few reasons.

1. Stores Are Understaffed

Just like how Covid-19 inspired people to undertake small home improvement projects, it also caused a massive labor shortage for business owners. And as a prominent national chain, Lowe’s got affected by the shortage.

As a result, those who stayed with the company to work were overloaded with tasks they don’t usually do. Store employees were suddenly finding themselves handling a department they didn’t know about, answering customers’ questions without any sort of expertise or experience.

Pair that stressful environment with a few unruly customers, and you get an employee who’s not motivated to work at all.

2. The Company Uses Third Party Contractors for Installations

Lowe’s is one of the places people go to when they need major appliances or furniture installed, such as a new fridge or a new set of kitchen cabinets.

The company usually offers free delivery and installation, making the proposition attractive to customers.

However, the main problem is that Lowe’s uses third-party contractors to perform deliveries and installations. While this is understandable due to costs, it also makes service inconsistent. There have been stories of contractors refusing to install the appliance or doing it wrong.

Getting Lowe’s to correct the problem can become a nightmare when something goes wrong with the installation.

Because the installer is a contractor, the most Lowe’s can do is schedule another appointment. There’s no guarantee it’ll be correct this time.

And even when the contractor arrives for the follow-up, they sometimes do the job improperly. They tend to either leave the appliance at the customer’s front door or place the item where it should be but refuse to install it.

3. Their Return Warranty Is Quite Short

Considering the nature of some of the items Lowe’s sells, you’d expect the in-store warranty to be long, like 90 days.

Sadly, Lowe’s warranty is only good for 30 days. After that time, you’re either stuck with the item or try the manufacturer’s warranty.

A thirty-day warranty is enough for minor items, but for something significant like a lawnmower or a barbecue grill, you need something longer. They’re high-ticket items that most customers expect to perform right out of the box.

However, Lowe’s is not going to budge with their return window. Once the 30 days are up, you’re out of luck. You’ll have to contact the manufacturer and invoke their warranty.

If you want to ensure your appliance is covered beyond the 30 days, you’ll have to purchase Lowe’s extended warranty.

The warranty length depends on the item you’re buying, but Lowe’s website claims it can last up to five years.

4. Some Store Employees Are Unprofessional

As customers, we expect Lowe’s store employees, or any store employee in general, to be polite, professional, and knowledgeable. Sadly, this isn’t the case at most Lowe’s stores.

A quick search of Lowe’s store reviews reveals a systemic pattern of employees who act unprofessionally, both in person and over the phone. Not knowing the answer to a question is one thing (they can always ask someone for help), but simply shrugging it off is unacceptable.

Of course, no store will ever be perfect; there will always be one or two bad employees in the mix. But when several stores across the country have consistently unprofessional staff, the company should consider revising its employee training.

5. Trying To Call a Store Is Like a Gamble

If you need help with your Lowe’s purchase and you can’t go to the store, you always have the option of calling. That is, if you can get anyone to answer.

It’s a mystery as to why it’s hard to get ahold of anyone in the store over the phone. You’re lucky if the store manager is in, as they tend to answer the phone.

But if not, be prepared to keep getting transferred or to get your call dropped entirely.

If you get to talk to someone over the phone and get to the right department, you’re at the last gauntlet.

Cross your fingers as you talk to someone and hope they’re looking at the same thing as you and know what they’re talking about.

6. Trying To Get Appliance Repairs Is a Nightmare

If you buy a major appliance from Lowe’s and you’re within 30 days of the warranty, you can ask the store for repairs.

Just like with installation and delivery, Lowe’s uses subcontractors to perform the job on their behalf. That means when you call a store, a store employee logs your problem, then schedules the next soonest repair appointment for you.

Once the appointment is made, Lowe’s contacts a third-party vendor to carry out the repairs. And this is where we run into problems.

Sometimes, repair visits are uneventful yet successful, but that’s only if the technician shows up in the first place.

7. Calling Their Customer Service Line Is an Ordeal

Maybe you’re tired of trying to reach someone from your local store, so you decide to escalate by calling Lowe’s directly. Surely, they can help, right?

Sadly, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Trying to call their customer service line is an exercise of patience. The automated call tree is confusing to navigate, hold times are long, and calls frequently drop.

Once you get through a phone agent, most customers report an uncaring and impolite phone agent. At that point, you may as well try your luck with store employees again and hope that you actually get an answer from one of them.

Conclusion

Lowe’s store employees are usually overworked in an understaffed store, so try to have a level of patience when working with them.

It’s easy to project our annoyances with the company to the employee in front of us; most of the time, they’re powerless to change anything.

To truly improve things with Lowe’s, the company needs to restructure its employee training. They also need to provide employees with better tools to perform their jobs better. 

Lastly, Lowe’s needs to listen to customer feedback. Without them, the company wouldn’t exist. They need to find ways to retain customer satisfaction while also keeping company costs down.

References

https://www.lowes.com/l/help/lowes-protection-plan

Jessica G.

Jessica Guilmore graduated with an MBA in 2011. Since then, Jessica has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Jessica is also the head writer and founder of IfNotPay.com.

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