Saturday, April 9, 2016

The Sliding Door Company's 5-Star Reviews?

I'll admit it - I've been guilty of ignoring The Sliding Door Company's glowing 5-Star reviews on this blog for the most part. There is some real comedy going on - sprinkled in with the fraud of course.  We saw on our Complaints page how Sheryl Hai-Ami gave 5 STARS to the company - her husband is CEO and she is PRESIDENT!  But hey - 5 Stars is 5 Stars right?  

It makes me wonder if all the 5-Star reviews are what they appear to be.  Let's have a look at a few shall we?

The first thing we can do when looking at the 5-Star reviews is eliminate any that were placed before the installation of the product.  These people have no idea what they are in for during the 12 weeks between the time they placed their order and the installation of their order, which may or may not arrive in the correct size and color and may or may not be complete.  Let's have a look at a couple of these:

There are many to choose from - but picking one page at random... from Costa Mesa  

  • Lynn O.
  • Corona, CA
  • 5.0 star rating4/6/2015
    I have not received my barn door yet, but the process so far has been fantastic. Mari  has provided excellent customer services.  She has gone above and beyond to answer my questions and help with designing my door. I look forward to my door arriving, I know it is going to be beautiful!
    The reviews below don't even mention actually buying anything.  The 5-Star reviews are helping The Sliding Door Company's rating on Yelp, however.  Notice how many of them sound like they are actually ADVERTISING for The Sliding Door Company?  What's going on here?  Are these actual customers or shills?

  • Grant K.
  • Los Angeles, CA
    5.0 star rating
    1 check-in
    The team at the sliding door company were very helpful and friendly! Definitely recommend checking this place out if you are looking to remodel or just add in sliding doors to your home and want to keep your door game strong.

  • K B.
  • Fullerton, CA
    5.0 star rating
    Visited the show room for the first time today.  The displays are awesome and Kym and Maria and very helpful and knowledgeable of the products!  Highly recommend The Sliding Door Company if you are looking for unique, good quality and fashionable sliding doors!!

  • L. E.
  • Laguna Beach, CA
    5.0 star rating
    The 5 Stars I have given are for Kym George, the account executive at The Sliding Door Company! Her customer service skills and knowledge of the product TOPS! If you want to understand the product, ask for Kym. She is the best!!!!!
  • Below, David B admits he's reviewing the product from the showroom.  He seems very concerned about the negative reviews.  Seriously?  He dropped into the showroom and can now cast all the negative reviews in a bad light, while giving the Sliding Door Company a 5-Star rating?  Yes, seriously!

    • Costa Mesa, CA
    5.0 star rating2/15/2013
    Nice clean lines, and the hardware seems to be of high quality.  This place is worth a look if you are going contemporary in your remodel or office.  I'm a little surprised by the few bad reviews here, as everything was well built in the showroom, and the Yelp reviews in other cities have them consistently at 4-5 stars.
    Another thing I notice when reading 5-Star reviews is the mention of the sales person by name.  Customers of TSDC products rely on their sales person heavily during the sale, but still... for many of these shady 5-Star reviews, I think it wouldn't be out of the question to suggest sales people are getting friends in to post positive reviews in order to boost their own sales and to direct customers to them.  

    The One-Star reviews are about the product, the installation and the service, not about the sales experience (with a few exceptions).  There's no "incentive" to post a negative review but there are certainly incentives to have shills post positive hollow reviews of a great sales experience or how much product knowledge a particular salesperson might have.

    UPDATE:  A reliable source has reported that TSDC has been offering some type of "coupon" to people who will post a positive review.

    Here's a fresh review describing how The Sliding Door Company works to remove negative reviews.

    Hanna Y.
    Midland Beach, Staten Island, United States
    1.0 star rating 6/9/2016
    Super shady company. Run for the hills!!! After a horrible experience with Joe the sleazy salesperson, Dahlia the "customer service manager" stepped in to assist. What a joke! She promised to assist; however, that never happened.  She was more concerned about me removing my negative Yelp review and offered assistance in exchange for the removal of the review. That was her main objective. Save yourself the headache. This company hires fly by night scammers whose only goal is to scam you out of money & it is evident that Ethics and integrity means nothing to this business. AVOID AVOID AVOID!

    I stumbled upon an article about "The Yelp Bill" - something in California that is intended to protect consumers from companies who have tried to intimidate their own customers over product reviews.

    "From time to time we hear about businesses that are so afraid of what their customers might say about them that they sneak clauses into consumer contracts designed to forbid their customers from saying anything bad about them on sites like Yelp. Some of these contracts even threaten fines or legal action. These types of non-disparagement contracts not only seek to intimidate potential reviewers away from sharing their honest experiences online, but also threaten to deprive the public of useful consumer information." 
    "A five-star rating for a business who had used one of these clauses to simply scare all negative reviewers into removing their comments wouldn’t really represent the experience a consumer could expect to have at that business in our opinion."   
    "AB 2365 makes it explicitly clear that non-disparagement clauses in consumer contracts for goods or services in the state of California are void and unenforceable. What this means is that individuals writing online reviews in California are now further protected from those bad actors who hide jargon in consumer contracts in attempts to prohibit you from posting reviews — positive or negative — online."
    Notice that this only applies to California at the time of the article (September, 2014). 

    Wednesday, April 6, 2016

    Adding A New Digit!

    Our blog visit counter is getting full... We are going to have to add another digit today!
    The Sliding Door Complaint Blog's New Digit
    10,000 views.  Who would have guessed when we started this blog less than seven months ago, that so many people would be interested in The Sliding Door Company's failures?  

    It doesn't hurt that this particular company is representative of companies that behave at their worst!  Today, people are outraged at businesses when they put profit above safety.  And let's be clear here, that's EXACTLY what The Sliding Door Company does every single day.

    This blog has demonstrated their dishonest sales tactics, their mistreatment of customers AND employees - and their failures in almost every aspect of business ethics.

    So having achieved this milestone, where will we go moving forward?  

    Well, of course we will continue to expose The Sliding Door Company's fraudulent business practices - and we have a lot more to expose so please stay tuned.  But I think it's also time to get more federal and state agencies involved in this case and to reflect to readers how this involvement transpires in the real world.  In my case, the evidence points to a conspiracy to hide safety defects in The Sliding Door Company's products - involving family members.  

    Additionally, the evidence suggests that Human Resources department manager was completely inept and acted against me to save her own job.  Evidence also suggests she involved an unwitting independent investigator in a crime.  But we will get to all that soon.  And while it is important to me, people aren't interested in my case as much as the overall product safety issues I have been exposing.  So with that in mind, we move forward exposing product safety issues, product fraud, contract fraud, engineering fraud and more.  

    Join us in SALUTING The Sliding Door Company (and companies like them) and the fine work they do.  We added a new digit - just for them!

    Monday, April 4, 2016

    Documented Use of Counterfeit Structural Bracket

    Swing Door Installation Video

    The link above is to a video of the installation of a Sliding Door Company Swing Door product.  

    At 0:20 of the video, we see the installer applying a counterfeit Simpson Strong-tie.  

    TSDC's engineering documents call for this one: 

    Not the same - at all.  So, clearly they don't follow the documentation an engineer has prepared for them.

    At 0:44 the video cuts away because the installer realized there was no room for his drill to fit into the space he left himself.  Planning - even when making a sales tool video of an installation - doesn't enter the process.

    Notice - no stud finders are used in this process.  Too expensive to supply installers with the equipment to find the solid blocking they are required by contract to install into.

    By the end of the video, we can see that this is a commercial installation and that the swing door does not meet the ADA kick plate requirement.  

    In this video, The Sliding Door Company has documented yet another bad installation - and in the process demonstrated that they use the counterfeit brackets in commercial installations, that planning isn't taken into consideration when installing a system, and that ultimately, the installed commercial system doesn't pass ADA.

    Good Job!

    Sunday, April 3, 2016

    Sliding Door Company Video Documents Bad Installation

    Here is one of The Sliding Door Company's YouTube Videos

    The Sliding Door Company is very interested in making sales.  The above video is a promotional sales tool intended to show a typical sliding door installation.  Here's an image from the video:

    Oh no... What happened here?  

    I count five switch plates on this wall in the area that the sliding doors will cross (the installer is in front of one but it is visible in the video).  The one he is standing in front of is a light switch.  There are two switch plates that are to the left of his left arm.  On the bottom left is an outlet.  The installer even plugged his tools into it.  So if someone plugs something in there, it could be torn out of the wall if someone opens the door from the opposite side.  A comment to the video pointed this out.
    "I noticed a power plug between the 02 doors, if someone opened the door from outside and a cable is plugged, this will cause an issue. "

    Another person noticed the issue that we have already discussed on this blog - stepping over the track.
    "You have to step over a track when walking into the next room or closet. Not good."
    And ultimately - what did the customer end up with?  Two sliding doors that create a big black frame around five switch plates on a wall.  The customer can't even cover up the upper switch plates with a picture.  Have they added value to their home with this ridiculous sliding door installation?  You decide.

    I understand that sometimes their installations might not go that well... but are those the ones you want to advertise in your promotional videos?