I brought my laptop to a repair shop in Beijing and I think they're trying to scam me. Need advice.

Encendi

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Oct 30, 2011
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So my laptop (Lenovo y410p) has been having issues since March or so, mainly with the discrete graphics card. I took it to a repair shop in the US before I left for Beijing but they couldn't fix it before I had to leave. So yesterday I finally had some time to take it to the hardware district.

Anyways, I find a place and they took a look at it and said my graphics card was dead. They said it'd take a day to fix and charged me 850RMB (~$140 USD). Well, I figured it wasn't too terrible of a price considering they were replacing the graphics card. They said they'd call me the next day.

So today, I waited until the end of working hours and they didn't call me so I called them. They tell me that the motherboard has been having issues. They offered to replace it for another 500RMB. At this point alarm bells are going off in my head. After haggling for a while they offered to do it for 300RMB but they'd keep my old motherboard. So I'm thinking about why they want my old motherboard if it's having issues? I tell them that I'll just take it as is and hang up. They call me back a few minutes later and say they'll try to fix my motherboard for free but it'll take 3-5 days. I accept since I really don't think I have anything to lose.

The pressing issue is that I heard from my coworkers that shady repair shops will often take out parts and swap them for off brand or malfunctioning components. I'm planning on bringing a flash drive and running some diagnostics, but I'm not sure what programs I should use and what I should be on the lookout for.

I really want to trust them but frankly their behavior has been extremely concerning. What do you guys think?
 

ESPclipse

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May 27, 2014
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Really depends on what problems you are experiencing. If the laptop is getting old and gets hot, then you may actually be experiencing hardware failure; not to mention Lenovo doesn't often assemble their devices with the best hardware. If you are just seeing BSODs on the occasion, then the issue may just be software related.
 

geofelt

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Your instincts are right.
If your cpu is permanently attached to the motherboard, they would take your cpu also.
Get your original specs to document what cpu you bought. Bring a printout with you.
When you pick up the unit, look at the windows properties to verify that you still have the same cpu, gpu, and ram.
I don't know what recourse you have in China, but your co workers can help there
 
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