While I love expanding my project capabilities with new woodworking or metalworking equipment, upgrading my workbenches, or adding new storage cabinets or tool chests, I truly hate freight deliveries.
Freight deliveries stress me out nearly every single time.
I received garage-style cabinets over the holiday season. There was no advanced notice, they just arrived one day. The quality and production was terrible, and so I wanted to send them back.
I housed those cabinets for a few days before contacting Home Depot to set up the return. The pickup was scheduled quickly. The carrier called, and I left the cabinets outside for the return pickup. My order was refunded as soon as the warehouse confirmed the cabinets were picked up.
I received another Husky mobile workbench today, and stressed over its delivery.
The driver added a new – luckily small – gouge to my driveway with the back of his truck before I could stop him. We got the tool cabinet up the driveway on his pallet jack.
I asked – should we check it down here or up top? He said up top, because they cannot accept open boxes for return.
Up top by the driveway, I cut the straps and lifted the box. Damage!!
Looking at the box, the damage wasn’t obvious. But under the cardboard, it looks like a forklift or pallet jack slammed into the tool box.
I don’t mind cosmetic damage, but this was functional damage and likely structural.
I told the driver. He called his supervisor to reopen the delivery and change it from delivered to refused. I helped the driver get the tool box back to his truck, gave him a bottle of water and a tip, and wished him a great weekend.
I then called Home Depot’s Pro customer service line. I reached an agent quickly, and they looked up my order. Since the order was marked as delivered, they had to call the freight handle to confirm I refused it.
It took some time, but Home Depot processed this as a return, issued a refund in the form of gift cards (which was the original form of payment), and I promptly placed a replacement order.
Cosmetic damage is usually tolerable.
Home Depot handled these past few experiences quite well. Freight deliveries are always stressful. Sometimes I don’t get a delivery phone call, sometimes deliveries are dropped off without warning or inspection for damage, and other times there’s this back and forth when something arrives with functional or structural damage.
The frustrating part is that freight damage usually stems from human error and could usually be avoided. Proto tool boxes that I ordered from Zoro arrived twisted and crushed. A Husky box from Home Depot once arrived with significant damage to the top, as if several tons of product were dropped on top. A workbench I ordered from Amazon was left in the driveway with parts sticking out of the box. A band saw I ordered from Rockler arrived with structural components speared through the box and bent.
Home Depot processed my recent post-delivery quality complaint return with little hassle, and today’s refusal, refund, and replacement order went easier than I expected.
I’ll cross my fingers that the replacement delivery goes smoother.
At the least, these couple of experiences with Home Depot has me less stressed about the what-if parts. What if it’s damaged? What if I need to refuse or return a delivery? That they make this part easy improves a typically nerve-wracking experience.