Consumer Complaints and Reviews
My husband and I recently moved into a new house and finished redoing the backyard when we wanted to add landscape lighting to the project. We are DIY people, so I decided to do a little research before plugging into the project. I did some googling, and ended up calling in to AQL. Chris was extremely helpful. He recommended a 12 volt system to save on energy and for a safer installation. He also pointed me to their copper collection because I live near the coast and wanted that vintage green look. After chatting with him I felt confident in the transformer, fixtures, and LED bulbs I purchased. My yard looks spectacular; couldn't ask for a better experience.
I called and talked to a Rep about the Under Cabinet Halogen Puck Lights. I ordered components based on our conversation. Then when I received the order it was not what I talked about with the rep. Now I expected a no problem return. They want to charge a 35% restocking fee even I call and spoke to someone about what I wanted to make sure I got what I needed and wanted beforehand so I wouldn't have to return anything. Their prices aren't any better than the big box stores, Lamp Plus or Build.com. Any of those places will happily take returns and refund quickly the full purchase price. This is why buying from a smaller company is not a good idea. They are happy to sell to a customer but if anything is wrong they wouldn't make it right. I wish I read the reviews 1st and I would have stuck to Lamp Plus.
I was so impressed with Chris the customer service rep at AQ Lighting that I did not do a proper price comparison before ordering. It turns out that AQ's prices are much higher than those offered for similar products elsewhere. Plus their online ordering is a bit strange where you have to submit your electronic signature and don't actually know exactly what your order cost until you receive an email confirmation from them, of course by that time the charge has already been processed to your card. Oh and yes they charge an insurance fee without telling you.
Anyway, when I realized my error (after business hours) I immediately emailed a cancellation request and phoned the next morning to confirm as I was not interested in paying a 30% restocking fee for a order that had not yet been processed. The next morning I received a response from Tom who assured me that the order would be cancelled and a refund issued. He was very accommodating and we had a pleasant conversation. I took awhile to receive my check but indeed, I received a 100% refund as promised. I am satisfied with the response by this company, just disappointed that their prices seems so out of line to the competition.
We ordered one undercabinet light, and were happy with it, then ordered five more to finish out the kitchen with a couple spares for the future. I rarely write reviews, but my wife and I were so excited about the quality of these lights. These fixtures are superior quality not found at the big box stores. They are made with thick metal and glass, not plastic. The glass cover swivels out for easy cleaning and maintenance. Mounting screws are built in and are the perfect size. Electric connectors are durable, easy to use push-ins that fit 12 and 14 gauge wire, requiring no twist ons. The size was precisely as they were advertised so they fit perfectly. It took me 10 minutes to wire and mount each one.
I was especially happy to find these, because I had pre-wired our kitchen undercabinet with 120v wiring for parallel installation (not series), with a dimmer, when I realized that it was difficult to find lights that met my requirements. These lights were perfect. They came with a transformer built in to power LEDs and also allow dimming. They come with a bright and a 'less bright' mode, but both modes are fine. The color of the light were the perfect white we desired. The thickness is less thick than other lights I looked at, so they don't protrude too low, so these fixtures can't be seen. Most solutions involved seeking out all the components necessary, finding a place to put the transformer(s), have no cover for the LEDs, and have funny colors, but these lights had everything built into one solid product.
The packaging was very professional, very secure and easy to open. The website also made the ordering process simple. I'm a web developer myself and found the ability to select the sizes and quantities needed very intuitive. When I called, concerned about other reviews on this site, a real person immediately answered even though it was mid-evening. I received the items in a timely manner and had no issues whatsoever with any step of the process.
Ordered undercabinet LED AQUC series lights 32" and 24" panels - shipped in 1 week. Got them. All great. Called office to confirm install instructions - talked to Brian (or Ryan) dont recall. Was good experience. Good guidance on how to link up the lights. Tried the panels - 32" was to be hardwired. The rest were to feed off it - was told all good, no problem to work it that way. Did electrical hook up (3 hrs into the project) - the downstream units not getting the power. Called back to the office. Talked again to Brian (or Ryan) dont recall - the story is 5% of units can be defective. Sorry for you. Bad luck of manufacturing, but nothing we can do...
Will give you a free ship back label, but nothing else. Maytag doesn't give me a 30% discount if the fridge is bad - was the analogy that I was told. I said, "but you offer 10% discount for a review" - so get ready for an honest review, "but before I do that may I talk to Tom, your lead guy?" "No, I am where the buck stops, good luck getting to Tom." So I posted the review on their website, but the reviews are approved by the AQLteam, so I don't expect it to be posted. So here I am posting my review to other websites - Lets see if this leads to a better result. This company absolutely is not customer focused. If only 5% of items are defective, make the 5% happy to say you solved their problem, not just wasted their time. How hard scheduled are these people?!
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I do not recommend this company. We ordered light in May 2015. Had to return them. It cost $60.00 to ship back, a 35% restocking fee and it's October 2015, still fighting for the money they owe us. When you call them they just lie and bull crap you. I would highly recommend not to order from this company!!
I found a solar post cap that I thought would fit a true 6x6 post. At least that is what their website indicated. I ordered them even though the shipping was high in my opinion. When I got them I found they would not fit a true 6x6 post. Disappointed I contacted AQ Lighting and was told to file a claim via their claim form online. Poor customer service from the start. I filled out the online form. Several days later I was told that the items were dropped shipped and I needed to ship them back to the drop ship company and would be charged a 35% restocking fee! Are you kidding me? So I am out the restocking plus another $60 shipping because they came from Canada. There was absolutely no effort on their part to make this right even though their website is misleading. Not that it matters but I will never order from them again and would recommend no one else does either if there is any chance you will have to make a return. They should be ashamed of themselves. It cost $130 for me to find out the lights were not as advertised.
I ordered these lights for my kitchen undercabs. The representative seemed knowledgeable. I wrote down what he said - had a diagram of my kitchen. Price was high but they sounded good. I signed all of their waivers, ordered and paid for the lights. Took two weeks to get them as they were out of stock (and this was explained to me). After I ordered them, I continued to search online and found another set of LED tape lighting. The reviews were good, the price was extremely cheap. AQL charged me 280.00 without dimmers. Amazon, AVAWO charged me $50 and included dimmers. I figured "What the heck! Let's see what we get."
The Amazon lights arrived in two days. Finally the AQL lights arrived. Neither had instructions. I had my diagram from AQL. My AQL order appeared to be missing some items. Had to wait till Monday to call about it. When I called, they explained that the parts I ordered and paid for separately were in the sealed packet (looked like a kit). They charged me separately for the components in a kit. So now we are like a month out from the original order placed. I contacted my handyman to come install. I showed him my diagram - I showed him both sets of lights. He elected to install the Amazon $50.00 lights - did not understand the connectors that came with the AQL lights and just made his own.
I asked AQL why their lights cost so much more. They told me they could not vouch for the other product but felt their customer service would make the lights worth more. All in all, AQL probably has a decent product but we did not get the chance to find out as my handyman installed the much cheaper LEDs in June. To date, I have had no problems. I was able to return to AQL - unopened packages - minus a 35% restocking fee. Even with the 100 loss, I feel I came out ahead.
Received my outdoor lights just as I was told. I ordered the white lights and loved them. The whole process of the order went smoothly and perfect. Now I have a place for the warm white lights and I am going to order them next. I recommend this company to anyone who needs beautiful lighting.
When I called to order my under cabinet lights I explained that these were for Ikea Horizontal cabinets and need help to route the wiring. I sent a fax with pictures of the cabinets on the wall, electrical outlets etc and requested diagram of how to install what they would sell me. I was told that this would be sent with order. They did not do so and when I received the lights they were of different colors.. I sent them back and I had to pay postage. They sent me replacements which weren't correct but close. They also sent me a two page disclaimer which I had to sign exempting them from any legal remedies explaining that was their companies policy. Fool that I was not to pay attention to such an obvious sign.
I would strongly recommend that this company have a BUYER BEWARE tag put on their website. Their personnel were polite, but had no power to correct what is obliviously a piss poor management team. I ended up hiring a professional electrician at the cost of $200.00 to wire up my $485.00 do it yourself lights.
The rep on the phone showed attitude right when I pointed out that the covers were not included on outdoor fixtures that I received. When I tried to order $10 small covers I was hit with an $18 shipping and "well you should've read the description carefully". When I asked about returning the order was told: "Absolutely, but you will be charged a 30% restocking fee". Not sure if the rep. was an owner or staff, but given the other reviews here it seems a culture within the company.
I bought some wondering barn lights with red shades for my garage. First, they came three weeks late, much like the other reviewer said...it was in stock merchandise and didn't get shipped for three weeks. I was happy with the color and shine, and had an electrician install them in October 2012. In January 2013, I noticed the red shade was totally faded and almost powered. I thought maybe it was because of the winter we had. However, the other shade and gooseneck was still shiny and gorgeous. I figured I would wait and try to hose and wipe the discolored shade and gooseneck once the weather improved. Well, no luck, and now the other gooseneck is all powdery.
I called the customer service department and asked how long the paint should stay shiny, etc. They told me years and years. Then I explained how some of mine faded and look Pepto-Bismol pink after only five months. They told me to fill out a claim form online. I did, and now am being told that I need to send these lights back and swap them out for a smaller style, or have them repaint mine. The guy emailed saying they will fade still. What the hell. And...I have to pay for shipping, which is not cheap.
If I would have known this, I would have not spent $350 on lights. I recommend you go to Home Depot or Menard's or Lowe's and order lights from them. They are cheaper, and you'll probably get better service. I didn't listen to the reviews before buying, and wasted money on crappy product.
I have purchased outdoor garden lights. For most, 5 out of 6 filled up with water. The LED bulbs burned out. They would not replace the bulbs at their expense. At $20 a bulb, it adds up. I also purchased fountain lights from them. 1 out of 3 filled up with water. I am not happy with their products. I will not use them again, since I feel their product is inferior.
I tried to discover why my lights had not arrived one week after them being ordered, so I called customer service who (less than graciously) informed me that my fountain/pond lights (an in-stock item) would not be delivered for an additional week, that I would have to wait at least two weeks for an in-stock item to be delivered. Apparently, it's nicely hidden in their shipping information and "Ms. Gracious" coldly informed me that I could have to wait for up to a month. I, thus, will decline to conduct business with this company in the future.
This is in addition to our reply below. We, at Affordable Quality Lighting would like to explain our side. As educated adults, we all know that there are two sides to every tale. Mr. ** and his company, Michigan Maintenance Supply is not providing an honest posting. We have been told that Mr. ** has done this to several companies online. Therefore we feel it is time to expose Mr. ** in hopes that he does not continue his pattern of defrauding honest companies. As a reminder, we have had no prior complaints since our grand opening in 1974. Mr. ** and his company filed complaints with the BBB and American Express. These two organizations are a neutral party. And as we all know, they are also long established and very reputable. These two organizations (BBB and AMEX) both denied Mr. **'s claims. They both came to this conclusion after they investigated Mr. **, his company, his history of complaints and more importantly the facts of this particular claim.
We did not sell any product to Mr. ** and his company blindly. We faxed him the details of the order, detailing prices and items. We also faxed him our terms and conditions of sale. Both faxes were reviewed, signed and faxed back to us by Mr.**. Nowhere on any of Mr. **'s documents did we ever note the items are UL listed. We offer many UL Listed and non-UL listed items as many items do not require UL and some jobs do not require UL. However, we offer both thus leaving it up to the customer to choose. Mr. ** chose the non-UL units knowing his project would require them. Mr. ** hoped that he can cut corners, save money and hope the inspector would not catch them. Well, his plan to deceive the inspector failed and now he wants to return used fixtures to us which we do not have to do since they are now used and were not damaged or defective. And Mr. ** signed off on them and their details prior to our shipping them.
However, in order to continue to demonstrate our 35 year old pattern of exceptional customer service we offered to take the loss and provide a refund. Guess what, Mr. ** has not returned them. Wonder why? Well instead he files false claims in hopes the AMEX would have provided a refund and he would keep the installed items, not to mention an additional bonus of trying to extort "labor" money from us in addition to keeping the items for free! And the only way to pull this off would be to file false claims against us in hopes of clouding AMEX and the BBB. Well Mr. **, the BBB and AMEX did not buy it. And we did not as well. We threw you a curve when we offered a refund but wanted the items back. You were also thrown another curve when AMEX and the BBB denied your claims.
Our president has personally spoken to Mr. ** several times to no avail. We will gladly provide all documents from the BBB, from AMEX and from Mr. ** proving our side. Mr. **, what can you provide? It seems all Mr. T. wants is to live his life deceiving companies, city inspectors and now consumer affairs. Lastly and to address Mr. **'s false UL claims: UL has never asked us to remove their name or logo from our site. We continue to work with UL and proudly post their logo on our site (with their permission), where we clearly note to look for the UL logo for UL Listed items.
You have posted a fraudulent claim against our company without even contacting AQL for confirmation. Mark disputed this charge 5 times with American Express. They had a thorough investigation to find in AQL's favor. We have signed documentation. Then Mark sent this fraudulent charge to the BBB. Again, we prevailed and the fraudulent claim was removed. Please call me as soon as possible. We would like these false accusations removed immediately! We can provide invoice signed by Mark ****. The invoice contains the item that your cardholder confirmed he wanted to purchase. We can provide the Terms of Sale as signed by Mark, it clearly states our terms and conditions and the responsibility of the purchaser.
We can provide the website page verifying and clearly states the socket is UL Listed. Mark confirmed he saw this page provide for him but avoided the context in which UL was written. This is an outdoor fixture and we do sell thousands a year, that being said our website is very clear that every city and state has their own codes and the cardholder is responsible to investigate what is approved for their area. We can also provide a letter from Mark's electrician stating that he’s a certified master electrician and that he is licensed in the State of Michigan. He claims to be very experienced. We are inclined to believe him. He installed 16 fixtures. He installed all 16! I find it odd such a highly qualified master electrician would install fixtures in his licensed state that does not meet code.
Mark continues to change his claims and states that the fixtures do not meet their city codes. We are absolutely okay with that statement but he could have returned them! Now, his new statement is that they were not installed but he sent us photographs of all of them installed. Your cardholder contacted the President of Affordable Quality Lighting and after your cardholder had all of the fixtures installed he wanted to return them. Your cardholder claimed that he would return the fixtures as new. We can provide the email sent to Mark stating the following verbal agreement the President of AQL and Mark had. In good faith, the President of AQL authorized the return and told him he would receive a credit once the fixtures were returned and inspected.
The President even put this in writing! We never heard from your cardholder again except for this continued harassment! We’ve already been award victory with American Express for 5 times and the BBB! I am sorry that your Mark does not wish to pay for the merchandise in his possession. We disagree. If you purchase the merchandise, we ship, you accept, you pay. It’s a simple concept and it’s insulting that you are allowing this fraudulent claim without contacting the firm he's attacking for verification.
I was a victim of a bait and switch scam. On A.Q.L's web site, it said (and I have a print out of this) the lights I purchased are UL Listed and for outdoor use. I received the lights and had a few of them installed. The electric inspector for the City Of Warren Michigan stopped by and said that they must come down as they are unsafe and not UL Listed.
I called Tom at A.Q.L., he told me that they were listed and that he could not understand how the stickers with the UL Listing was not on them. Tom said that he would send them to me in the US mail ASAP. No UL stickers and the letter, he said would also show that they are UL Listed arrived. I called UL they told me that this light are not UL listed. UL had AQL remove UL listings and its Logo from all pages on there web site.
I tried to get my money back from Tom, he said no way. So I am just out of $1,788.43 plus freight back and forth two times (approximately $149.00 ) and the cost of the electrician. The economic cost was $ 3,937.43 as I had a electrician install them only to have them removed and then install real lights.
I filed a complaint with Consumeraffairs.com and Tom himself (the president of AQL) responded promptly and courteously. Tom replaced the transformer. He addressed the problem fairly and I am satisfied with the resolution. I wish to withdraw my complaint and thank you for assisting me with this.
These people sold me a defective product which they refuse to replace unless I pay additional money to ship the product back to them and pay to have the replacement shipped to me. I did not get what I paid for. I have already paid for both the product and the cost to ship it to me. They took my money and failed to send me what I purchased and paid shipping on: a working transformer. I paid an electrician to install this and lost additional money because the part he came to install didn't work.
Affordable Quality Lighting Company Profile
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