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Monday, June 17 2019 @ 04:58 PM UTC

Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The "Ugly Brit" Situation

Expat TalesBy DON WINNER for - OK, here's the deal. There's this dumbass named David Venables, a 70 year old retiree from the UK (apparently.) He purchased a few LG air conditioner units from a store on Tumba Muerto. Then he used an AC technician to install the units, but the guy was not an authorized LG technician, so as soon as he touched the units he effectively invalidated the warranty or guarantee. As if that wasn't enough, he also asked the AC technician to modify the typical installation, and to mount external thermostats on the wall. When all of that didn't work and the units were damaged in the process, this guy tried to return them to the store. Predictably, they told him to pound sand. So what does he do? He drives up to the front of the store, smashes the units with an ax, records the whole thing with a video camera, and uploads the video to YouTube. And now the lawyers are involved on all sides. I have a strong feeling this David Venables guy is never going to be happy, anywhere. Maybe he should try Costa Rica? He thinks he's making some kind of a statement and he is - he's saying "I'm A Dumbass!" at the top of his lungs. Well done, idiot. You should know that within your own statements made on your videos, you basically confess to having invalidated the warranties. Ever heard of "personal responsibility?" Whatever, I'm sure you feel better blaming someone else. Good luck with that.

(For some reason it seems like the YouTube plugin stopped working. You can see this video by clicking this link.)

Copyright 2010 by Don Winner for Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The "Ugly Brit" Situation | 5 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The \"Ugly Brit\" Situation
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, September 07 2010 @ 08:09 PM UTC

I furnished my Panama apartment in Bella Vista with 5 LG air conditioners from Infox (the same store in the video) which were installed by an LG certified installer. They have worked fine for nearly a year. It is easy to find unqualified workers in Panama, but I can't imagine that anyone would actually hire someone not certified by the manufacturer to install something that expensive.

Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The \"Ugly Brit\" Situation
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, September 07 2010 @ 09:26 PM UTC
sounds like he should take it out on the technician, not the aircon company...
International numptee & Connoisseur of Stella Artois
Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The \"Ugly Brit\" Situation
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, September 07 2010 @ 11:24 PM UTC

I for one feel extremely sorry for that old man because almost the same happened to me with FRIOLIN SEGUNDO. I bought an air conditioner from them but they told me that "they do not do installations; they just sell the units". As a result I had to hire an independant installer. One month later the machine did not work anylonger. The installer said that the machine was still under guarantee but FRIOLIN SEGUNDO claimed that it was wrongly installed and therefore they did not recognize the manufacturer's warranty.

Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The \"Ugly Brit\" Situation
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, September 08 2010 @ 03:19 AM UTC

If you go to his youtube page he lists all his grievances over 3 videos. he is a man that has come from a culture where you generally can trust the advice you get from people you meet and won't be over charged or messed about, and he has moved to a country where you take your chances a lot of the time. He is also from a generation which would walk into shops and just ask for what he wanted and he would expect to get the service and advice he needed without problems. He would be told the right goods to buy and he would accept sales people at their word. But the culture he comes from also has a lot of cowboy builders and tradesmen, so he should know better.

To be fair, anywhere in the world you could be unlucky like he has been. including his country of origin. But he needs to take responsibility for himself and not be so trusting of people's advice and think more for himself. I can't help but have a little sympathy for him but he did choose Panama and he ought to know not to pay over the odds for things. His behaviour outside the shop is reminiscent of a british farmer that sprayed slurry over a building after a complaint fell on deaf ears. Sometimes old people just become very reactionary. There is probably room for a business out in Panama to provide lifestyle advice and management for the pensionados, if there isn't already.

Giving Other Gringos A Bad Name in Panama - The \"Ugly Brit\" Situation
Authored by: Don Winner on Wednesday, September 08 2010 @ 12:44 PM UTC

I Had A Similar Problem: A couple of years ago I was doing a remodel on a new apartment. I went to Do It Center and purchased all of the stuff we needed - a new large refrigerator, washer and dryer, on-demand hot water heater, and four Samsung air conditioning units. However, since the work was still underway in the apartment, the AC units sat in boxes in one of the bedrooms until we were ready to install them. I had my AC guy come over and do the work, and at that time we discovered that one of the units was damaged and not working. It could be repaired, but I tried to get a new one. Do It Center explained that more than 30 days had passed since i purchased the unit so they would not do an exchange or a refund. I tried to get them to change their minds but they dug in their heels and refused. Anyway, I eventually just had my guy repair the unit and it's been working fine ever since.

Use Authorized Technicians: I now know for new equipment and new installations it is critically important to use installation technicians that are authorized by that store or brand. If you don't then the manufacturers will use this trick every time to declare your warranty as invalid. If that happens, I guess you can go back to the store and chop your AC units up with an ax if that will make you feel better, but it won't change the company's policy. Once the unit has been working for a few years and the warranty expires, and for regular cleaning and maintenance, this becomes less important.