Another impressive Customer Service experience: Stages Cycling
I love posting positive customer service stories–especially these days when customer service seems to be an afterthought for many companies.
Garmin is a company that really gets the importance of service after the sale, and they have always impressed with their excellent customer service.
Jaybird is another company that stands behind their products, and provides great post-sale support.
Recently I had occasion to contact Stages Cycling about an issue I was having with my power meter, and I came away extremely impressed. First, a little backstory…
I’ve had my Stages power meter since March 2014, and it’s performed nearly flawlessly since I first bolted it up. The only problem I’ve experienced with my power meter is a known issue with the stock battery cover: there are 3 small plastic tabs that are prone to breakage. If even one of the tabs is broken, this can lead to water intrusion and signal cutouts due to poor battery contact. The first time a tab broke off, I called Stages and they sent me a couple replacements at no charge.
Eventually, though, both of those replacement battery covers suffered from broken tabs. I’m always very careful when replacing the battery covers, but the tabs are just super weak and break over time.
So I called Stages, and they informed me that they now have improved battery covers for first generation power meters. I was sent a couple of these new battery covers at no charge. The improved battery covers I received are supposed to be stronger, and far less prone to breakage as compared to the stock covers. Also, note that the latest (second generation) Stages power meters come with an improved design, which includes a different battery cover. The second generation battery covers are not compatible with first generation power meters. You can read more about all of that here.
This brings me to the point of today’s blog…
Recently while on a ride my power meter cut out. I’d just replaced the battery, so I knew a failing battery was unlikely to be the problem. I stopped and checked the power meter, and I could see that none of the battery cover tabs were broken off. I put the battery back in and closed the battery door. The power meter came back to life for a couple minutes, only to die again.
When I got home I went ahead and replaced the battery with a fresh one (by the way, I buy these CR2032 batteries in bulk on Amazon–inexpensive, and excellent quality!) After replacing the battery the power meter seemed just fine: on the next ride there were no issues.
Unfortunately on the second ride after replacing the battery the power meter refused to work.
My power meter is out of warranty, and I thought there was a very good chance that I was looking at an expensive repair. Bracing myself for the worst, I picked up the phone and called Stages.
I was quickly connected to a support representative, Lane, who was extremely friendly and helpful. I explained the issue I was experiencing, and I also informed Lane that my power meter was nearly two years old and out of warranty.
Lane replied, “It sure sounds like a battery contact issue. I’d like you to please send me a couple of photos, as there’s a good chance I can help you get this resolved remotely. If not, though, we’ll be happy to repair your power meter at no charge.”
Obviously Stages was under no obligation to make such a generous offer, and I sure didn’t expect it! That goes way beyond good customer service.
So I sent Lane the photos he requested, and his trained eye quickly spotted something I’d overlooked: a very small bit of broken plastic tab (from an old battery cover) was lodged in the power meter (click to enlarge):
Lane asked me to remove the bit of plastic, and also perform a very minor modification (PDF format) to improve battery contact.
Since performing these two steps my power meter has performed perfectly.
I thought I would be looking at days–if not weeks–without my power meter, as well as an expensive repair bill. Thanks to Lane, I was back up and running in a matter of minutes. Further, had a repair been required, Stages was willing to perform those repairs at no charge.
I want to thank Lane and Stages for providing awesome customer service, and an excellent product. If you’re in the market for a power meter, Stages not only makes a great product, they stand behind it with top-notch service and support.