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My Herman Miller Warranty Experience

February 15th, 2008 · 4 Comments

$250,000 Chair
I have had the chair pictured above for almost a decade. It’s a great chair, and I expect it will last another ten years or so.

A few months ago I plopped my 270 pound butt down in that thing and heard a horrible pop, accompanied by an uncomfortable drop onto the tensioning mechanism that holds the seat together. The seat pan had broken, snapping at the point at which it is cantilevered to the frame.

I wanted to cry – I call it my $250,000 chair because it is all I have left from a business venture in my twenties during which I squandered a quarter of a million dollars trying to be “smart”. I like to tell people I’d have been better off if I had acted like a typical twenty-something and bought a Ferrari or fancy skiboat instead of trying to build a consulting gig into a consulting company. Sigh. Long after the employees and clients have forgotten about me, I still had the chair, at least until it broke under the weight of my burgeoning backside.

I logged onto eBay right away and searched for Aeron seat pans. They were about $150, plus shipping. New chairs were pretty much the same price they had been when I first bought mine – about $700. I wasn’t happy, and my wife wasn’t happy about paying money to fix/replace the chair.

Though it seemed like a long shot, I decided to check out the chair’s warranty, so I went to the Herman Miller site and poked around.

Ten years, it said. I couldn’t believe it. Ten years? I read the fine print, expecting it to be prorated, like tire or mattress warranties. But it wasn’t. So I contacted the service center, and they sent me a box and a label. I sent in my chair, and, believe it or not, the very next day the chair came back with a new seat pan. THE NEXT DAY!

I couldn’t believe it. It must have cost at lest $100 to same day that chair to me, not to mention the cost of shipping the chair to them, which they had also covered.

I thought service and accountability like this were history, but Herman Miller and their service providers proved me wrong. Thanks Herman!


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4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 G Breeze // Mar 18, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Which Herman Miller Service center did you contact? My experience is unfortunately not echoing yours and I'm wondering if it's the service center I'm talking to.

  • 2 davidray // Mar 18, 2009 at 5:08 pm

    I wish I could remember G, but it was quite some time ago.


  • 3 Frank // Jun 16, 2009 at 4:16 pm

    Did you need to supply a purchase receipt? I ask because I just inherited one with a broken seat and I'd like to try

  • 4 davidray // Jun 16, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    Nope, not that I recall.

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