Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

Thread: Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

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  1. #1
    DrD
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    Angry Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

    Lately, my AT4010-50E Eco-Drive has not been syncing with WWVB at night. I've verified the signal strength of the transmission using my ham radio and tried various placements in windows, etc. This watch usually only misses a nighttime sync once every few weeks from my dresser top. Also, after attempting an on-demand reception, it would fail and the second hand would begin ticking in 2 second intervals, indicating low battery, though the battery would test full charge at other times. Charging on a sunny windowsill for days made no difference.

    I sent the watch to Citizen in California for warranty repair (just under 5 years old) and they sent it back via UPS ground stating they received the watch "not zero reset properly" and that they recharged the watch and reset it. After a 3 week turnaround (including coast to coast UPS ground from their end) it came today and is no different than when I sent it to them. I called their service center and the friendly rep said the battery should not behave that way. They sent a ground UPS label via email for return to their service department in California. I'm not convinced this is merely a battery issue or a symptom of a larger problem.

    I've read nothing but good reviews of Citizen repair. This was not one of their success stories. Hopefully when my watch is returned to me this time, I'll have a good report.
    Last edited by DrD; February 23rd, 2018 at 19:19.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by DrD View Post
    Lately, my AT4010-50E Eco-Drive has not been syncing with WWVB at night. I've verified the signal strength of the transmission using my ham radio and tried various placements in windows, etc. This watch usually only misses a nighttime sync once every few weeks from my dresser top. Also, after attempting an on-demand reception, it would fail and the second hand would begin ticking in 2 second intervals, indicating low battery, though the battery would test full charge at other times. Charging on a sunny windowsill for days made no difference.

    I sent the watch to Citizen in California for warranty repair (just under 5 years old) and they sent it back via UPS ground stating they received the watch "not zero reset properly" and that they recharged the watch and reset it. After a 3 week turnaround (including coast to coast UPS ground from their end) it came today and is no different than when I sent it to them. I called their service center and the friendly rep said the battery should not behave that way. They sent a ground UPS label via email for return to their service department in California. I'm not convinced this is merely a battery issue or a symptom of a larger problem.

    I've read nothing but good reviews of Citizen repair. This was not one of their success stories. Hopefully when my watch is returned to me this time, I'll have a good report.
    I just recently had a bad experience with Citizen's repair center as well. That being said, maybe try to reset the watch, and then use an app to emulate the radio signal (the one I use is called Clock Wave). I have a watch that only receives the DCF77 signal from Germany, and I use the app to sync the time every week or so.

  3. #3
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    Also, I have the watch you're referring to but in rose gold. You made a good choice!

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  5. #4
    DrD
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    Update: The watch was sent back to COA on 2/23 and received by them on 3/1. They sent an email acknowledging receipt on 3/3. On 3/6 I received another email saying the watch needed a new movement and my total cost would be $158.68 including shipping and tax. I then called them, sat on hold for about 15 minutes, and had to explain several times that this watch was under warranty when they failed to fix it the first time a month ago and that there should be no charge. Eventually, they checked their records, agreed, and said it would be fixed for no charge. They then told me that the movement was back ordered and that it could be 4-8 weeks to receive parts. So, that would make it more than 3 months to get the watch repaired. I’ll post another update when something happens. I did get a survey from COA today asking how their service was....

    Update 3/14/18
    I contacted CoA to see if they could replace the bezel while it was there for service. The current one has several scratches on it. They wrote back today and said that the bezel is not a separate item and I would have to replace the entire case for $186.00 (it's titanium). I declined.
    Last edited by DrD; March 14th, 2018 at 21:32.

  6. #5
    DrD
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    Smile Re: Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

    Update:
    I was notified by COA on 3/22/18 that my watch was shipped back to me after its warranty repair. This was excellent news. The back-ordered parts and repair took only 2 weeks rather than 4-8 weeks quoted. It arrived today and looks great. Hands line up perfectly. There is a pressure test form in the box that shows the results of pressure testing after the repair. The time was off by 6 seconds or so and I sat it on the window sill and tried a manual sync. It showed a low signal strength and eventually failed after a few minutes or more. Afterwards it still showed full battery strength so I knew it had been repaired. I then tried the Clock Wave app on my iPhone and it worked! The watch showed a high signal strength and after a few minutes it showed a successful sync and the time was behind by exactly one hour. DST flag was set off so I adjusted it to on. Everything looks great now.

    In summary:
    Originally sent in on 2/2/18. Received back after second attempt at repair on 3/29/18. Movement/electronic module replaced. Pressure tested. Now seems to be all back in order. Total cost was just the first shipping cost to COA.

    I'm happy. :)

  7. #6
    Member lanjim's Avatar
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    Re: Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

    Quote Originally Posted by DrD View Post
    Update:
    I was notified by COA on 3/22/18 that my watch was shipped back to me after its warranty repair. This was excellent news. The back-ordered parts and repair took only 2 weeks rather than 4-8 weeks quoted. It arrived today and looks great. Hands line up perfectly. There is a pressure test form in the box that shows the results of pressure testing after the repair. The time was off by 6 seconds or so and I sat it on the window sill and tried a manual sync. It showed a low signal strength and eventually failed after a few minutes or more. Afterwards it still showed full battery strength so I knew it had been repaired. I then tried the Clock Wave app on my iPhone and it worked! The watch showed a high signal strength and after a few minutes it showed a successful sync and the time was behind by exactly one hour. DST flag was set off so I adjusted it to on. Everything looks great now.

    In summary:
    Originally sent in on 2/2/18. Received back after second attempt at repair on 3/29/18. Movement/electronic module replaced. Pressure tested. Now seems to be all back in order. Total cost was just the first shipping cost to COA.

    I'm happy. :)
    Congrats on the success.. I'm in the middle of an unfavorable experience with them as well. Way disappointing. They used to be so stellar. Hope mine turns out positive.

    Sent from my PH-1 using Tapatalk

  8. #7
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    Re: Citizen Service disappointment, AT4010 Eco-Drive

    They tried to get me to pay for a new movement in my European radio-controlled, sapphire crystal Nighthawk when all it needed (I thought) was a new stem and crown. They also could not repair the inner rotating bezel ring gear, they had to replace the entire titanium case at $155. I got the new case but I declined the new movement- when I received it back I was able to get it to work again simply by taking the stem and crown out (removing it entirely) and putting it back in. Then it worked perfectly fine! I work in a watch store, but had I not I would have took them for their word and gotten a new movement rather than try to fix it myself (and succeeding). I emailed them asking why they said I needed a new case when I was able to fix it without getting a whole new movement, simply by removing and reinstalling the stem and crown. No response..

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