A teak porch swing I ordered arrived with a manufacturing defect. Several holes for the swing brackets had not been drilled. And the instructions were extremely primitive.
Customer service offered to replace the defective parts. Or I could try to drill the holes myself, in which case they would compensate me $50 for my time and trouble and for the drill bits I would need to buy. I decided to do the latter.
But after several reminders and several months later, I have still not received the $50 compensation. The porch swing is pretty good. But the hassle and poor service has left a poor impression of this company.
In June 2013 I received the All Things Cedar GH20U Garden Hutch kit, price $298.US. This is a very simple (or should have been) small cedar tool shed. It is most definitely a "kit,"
nothing is assembled, and one receives cedar boards, 325 wood screws, and crude assembly instructions with very little detail.
Problem 1: I received two sets of right-side wall boards. The roof is sloped, the sides are not interchangeable. The outer face is finished, the inner face is not. Fair enough, mistakes in packing happen, but when I called customer support the operations manager couldn't understand what the issue was unless I sent him Pdf photos.
I sent him several photos. Via email he suggested that all I had to do was "flip the boards over." I explained that the roof was sloped and the boards were finished only on one side, they cannot be flipped over. I scanned a drawing from his own assembly pages with arrows pointing to what I needed, and he finally shipped the five correct boards. (Remember, I'm dealing with the Operations Manager.)
Problem 2: After building the sides, back, and door, I began to install the two boards that attach to the sides, upon which the door will be hung. All Things Cedar calls them stiles. For some reason the stiles had a tongue routed their full length, leaving only 3/8" to attach the hinges to, and, no way for the door to fit flush with the stile. So.....I sent detail photos of this to the ops manager, asking simply for some photos of how the hinges are to be attached. I received no photos or explanation, but they sent two stiles without the routed tongue, saying "the stiles are supposed to have a tongue, but to avoid further confusion we are sending stiles without tongues."
Problem 3: I installed the new stiles and was delighted to discover that the door was 5/8" too wide for the opening on each side. Another email to All Things Cedar, stating "Look, I don't want a refund. Just send me a detail photo of how you install the door hinges on the stiles that are routed."
No reply, no photos, nothing. I doubt that this hutch kit has ever been assembled by anyone at All Things Cedar in Lethbridge, Alberta. I suspect they're made and packaged in China and shipped to All Things Cedar. The company hasn't made any effort to prove otherwise.
I took a Skilsaw and ripped the 5/8" excess from each side of the door to make it fit. I also bought 3" hinges to replace the little 11/2" hinges sent with the kit. The door is 24" x 65"
and solid cedar boards, weight about 20 lbs. The hinges provided look like something for a jewelry box.
At no time has All Things Cedar offered any apology. I'm 65 years old, and have assembled a lot of mail order kits. All Things Cedar has easily the worst kit and worst customer service of any company I've ever done business with.
DJax Bethlehem, CT (Zone 5b) (1 review) June 3, 2006
I had a poor experience with All Things Cedar. Last summer I purchased a Teak patio set online. The table which, had much less padding than the chairs, arrived broken. Emails from their customer service were at turns; good, confused or defensive. They did offer me the choice to replace the table or return the entire set for refund. I’d ordered the set to arrive in time for a party, so I chose to just replace the table. This proved to be a hassle prone process. The company made arrangements with UPS for pickup with out consulting me on my availability and gave me conflicting information as to whether I should repack the table or not. When the replacement table arrived the finish was different than the chairs. I really didn't care to go through the return process again and the party date was coming up. Again, I chose to keep the set. Bad choice. Less than a year later the seat of one of the chairs, that apparently was not properly dove- tailed, has broken. I don't know about their Cedar products. But the teak, I received, while attractively priced, is poorly made. I would never order anything from this company again..