Sonsio - ONLINE BUYER BEWARE!
I bought a Nokian tire from tiresbyweb.com in August 2014. I paid an additional $20.25 for a Sonsio "Defender" road-hazard warranty.
In March 2015 I hit a pothole that destroyed the tire--"sidewall trauma" was the diagnosis of the local Goodyear shop that installed it.
I called tiresbyweb, where a rep advised to first file a claim with Sonsio, then order a replacement tire. The warranty document says customers can file a claim by phone, fax, mail, or by email. I called Sonsio's toll-free number, 866-592-5072.
After more than 20 minutes on hold, I reached a human being. She told me that the seller's rep was wrong. To process my claim, they'd need both my original receipt and a receipt for a replacement tire.
I was also told that they couldn't process a claim with just my name, phone, and address—that would require a "stamp" number from the original receipt.
So I ordered a new tire, and a new warranty. The total came to $160.93. I also asked tiresbyweb about the "replace first" requirement. Their rep said they'd never heard about that, "but maybe Sonsio changed their policy."
After I received the tire, I took it to the Goodyear shop, which charged $25 to mount it and balance it. I asked them to describe the damage and write the tire's DOT number on the receipt so I could provide it to Sonsio.
Then I dug up my original receipt, found the "stamp" number, and called again. After another 20-plus minutes on hold, I was told that Sonsio still didn't have enough information to "complete" my claim. I was told that could only be done by a tire store that had the tire in its possession.
The warranty documents don't say any about that--they say only that "tires that require replacement must be made available for inspection if requested by the administrator."
I read the description of the damage from the installation receipt. I offered to fax it or scan the installation receipt for them. I offered to send them the tire itself. I offered to deliver it to a location of their choosing.
All those offers were rejected. I was told I had to take the tire to the Goodyear shop, and tell THEM to call Sonsio. Their phone reps don't like to call out, I was told, because their priority is to answer all those callers on hold.
Goodyear's only investment in this is the $25 I paid I told them to mount and balance the replacement tire. I told the rep that I wasn't going to ask them to tie up their business line for 20 minutes on hold. I'd "delivered the tire for inspection," and if they wanted a report, they could call Goodyear. I said I would give them four days to do so before escalating my complaint.
That was on Thursday, April 2. It's now Tuesday, April 7. Sonsio still hasn't contacted the shop, or me.
Goodyear doesn't want my demolished tire behind their counter. And I'm out $186, three trips to the tire shop, a couple of hours on the phone, and another couple of hours documenting this history.
Sonsio sells warranties through online tire sellers, but it requires inspection by a brick-and-mortar store to make a claim. Yet it takes no responsibility to arrange or pay for that inspection.
Do I feel ripped off? You bet I do!
Reason of review: Warranty issue.
Monetary Loss: $155.
Preferred solution: Deliver product or service ordered.
I didn't like: Not paying legitimate claims.