AAAARGHH! Scammed on 2 smart locks! (a vent)

After lots of delay and flirting with the idea for months, I finally decided to pull the trigger on some smart locks for the house. After all, I just replaced my alarm system and integrated it with an Envisalink and got my Hubitat all working great with it...why not get some smart locks in the mix!

Ever the bargain hound, I had decided on Zigbee Kwiksets, and found 2 used ones on Amazon--one in "fair" condition, and one "like new." Both Zigbee.

They arrived today, two separate boxes, since they were coming from different used sellers. Just like I ordered, two brushed nickel 914 Zigbee boxes...

Open the first one up...Oiled bronze. And NOT EVEN a 914! It was a 914 CONVERSION KIT, which doesn't even have the freaking keypad! So, COMPLETELY wrong product in the right box---and it was put in there with no packing material or anything, so it had been rattling around in there getting beat up and scratched and marred to no end...just imagine all those metal parts--keys still in the lock, metal parts scratching the little plastic window over the battery. Total mess. Garbage, (and the freaking conversion kit is worth NEW what I paid for this thing USED! They're cheap! Because...NO KEYPAD.)

THEN I opened the second box...YAY! Looks good! I wouldn't say like new--there were a couple of dings on it, but overall, it was really nice, and I wasn't going to bother with a return over that stuff. After all, I paid for used. Anyway, I tried and tried, and the thing just wouldn't work. Problem after problem...wouldn't pair...
As I was trying to get the battery out, I accidentally pulled on the network card...THE FREAKING Z-WAVE PLUS network card! I double-checked the box: ZIGBEE. I double checked the card: Z-WAVE. What in the world?! So back it goes...

My theory is this: The first one--that's just someone hustling junk. Buying lots or returns or something...trying to sling it for cheap on eBay and Amazon. --And not a care in the world whether it works or not. Retail box? Open it up...product inside? Good. SELL IT. Disgusting. I have a side business selling things online as well, and one thing I've learned is to always, always be 100% forthcoming about any issues, and make sure the thing your'e selling works. I guess that karma doesn't come back all the time.

As for the second one: I think somebody helped himself to a little Amazon swap-a-roo. My guess is someone ordered the ZWave lock, was having trouble, and someone online told him to buy the zigbee card for it and swap it out. I've seen this advice given several times. "I bought one for $50 on eBay, and it's been perfect ever since!" they say...
So our friend decides, "I've already bought the lock...I don't want to have to pay extra for it to work right..." (and he sure doesn't want to wait a week for some schmo in New Hampshire to slow mail him one...) --So he just buys the zigbee lock on Amazon so he can get it same day Prime delivery, pulls the Zigbee card out, pops his Zwave card in, and back it goes...returned to Amazon under whatever pretense. --And whoever is checking this used product before reselling it doesn't know to pull the card in the thing and see if it matches.

People are just thieves. Makes me sick. I looked forward to installing these locks all day, and now I have to return them both (mega hassle), and I've paid full price for 2 new ones so I can be somewhat confident I'll get actual brushed nickel Zigbee locks this time. :frowning:

ah man thats really rough. sorry you had to go through all that hassle.

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here! let me make you feel a little better..
I bought a Nuki (and very good it is too)
however, living in the UK there are a few things that add to the cost a LOT!
if you can't do the work yourself, look elsewhere for a lock solution
the Nuki arrived with the Bridge, looks great and simple to fit..
problem 1 UK door handles fit proud of the door so the plate to mount the lock on doesn't sit on the door but on the handle, one quick pull and it will come off exposing your key..
OK make a wood and metal spacer assembly so it fits on the door proper great!
then there is the "Euro Cylinder" you need a special type of cylinder that will operate with both keys in! these are equal parts rare and expensive!
I ended up using a thumb release cylinder and machining the knob so it would fit in the lock.
then there is the issue of the lifting of the handle before locking the door (also, if anyone has "tried" the door while it is locked you often have to raise the handle before you can unlock it)
so you have to hunt high and low for a "Keylock mechanism" not quite as rare, but I had to order from Germany!
hoorar! it all now works (except the door sensor that because of the way the UPVC doors are made, you can't put the sensor magnet close enough) the extra bits cost more than the lock!
I still frequently don't know if the door is locked, and worse, if the door isn't shut, you also don't know. so you can lock the door while it is open!
smartlocks for reasonable money in the UK? dead in the water!
if I had have gotten a professional in, it would have cost me a couple of months wages!
this isn't Nukis fault.
this is a general lack of awareness of the UK and her weird ways!
$700 + hours of work, for one door?
it is the only door I will be fitting a smartlock onto LOL

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Ugh. Rough story on that one too.

You know, it's getting harder and harder to get a used bargain these days. It seems like almost every single time, I get burned by some kind of scammer. I'll give the benefit of the doubt that some of these people aren't scamming me directly, but are passing along (knowingly or unknowingly) the result of someone else scamming.

Bought a used ecobee. "No stands on the senors" it said. --no backs either, it before to tell me.

Bought an Almond 3 to flash my peanut plugs... Received an Almond 2015, A FAR inferior and less valuable router.

Bought a "like new" photo booth that came with a power supply that was in no way a proper fit or powerful enough to actually operate it, and the seamless white was grimy as anything.

I feel like it didn't used to be this way. I've always been thrifty, don't mind if something is a little scratch-n-dent for a good deal. But it seems like everybody's out to get one by somebody these days.

I'm trying to figure out a way to include a note inside this zwave lock warning the next buyer. Because I'm sure it's gonna go right back up for sale as soon as I return it. (And believe it or not, the installation process is quite different between the zwave and zigbee model--beyond just which include mode you attempt).

Thanks for letting me vent.

hi mate! my Nuki was new LOL
I suppose I should add just to make you smile,
last year I sold a camera on eBay (DSLR) it was better than described, and I threw in a couple of lenses too!
I clearly stated all that was included in the photo was all that was included
I specifically mentioned that there was no original box, or instruction book.
so a day after it arrives, he mails me to say "thanks for the extras but where is the instructions" I explained again, that I didn't have them, but in the end, I downloaded and printed them, and sent them to him (over 400 pages!)
FOC he then started a dispute with eBay, because (and you couldn't write this cr*p) " the mains plug was a different colour than the one in the listing" it might have been (it was a standard figure 8 lead, I think I threw a new one in the package) eBay blew him out of course. but really that isn't the point!
I have bought a huge amount of HA used and mostly it has been OK
it's all luck LOL
I hope yours improves soon!!

And this is why I get POed when people joke about/use the "Amazon loaner program". Because people often do crap like this. Well, that, and it is morally and ethically wrong as well even when you don't tamper with the product, but I digress.


I would call Amazon and complain. If these were used and sold by independent sellers, they will more than likely refund you the money. They may not even care if they get the items back.

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Agreed. I just take it as a joke, but it's funny because everyone knows what you mean, and we've all probably been tempted. (not to steal, but to take advantage of the same day "borrow" situation.) I think Best Buy used to have a huge problem with people ordering things online, then going to the store to grab one for a few days while they waited on their shipment. I bet that slowed way down as same/next day shipping became so pervasive.

I've definitely already talked to them, and they said they are going to investigate this sale/seller. I am returning the items though--have no use or desire for some abused, beat up, wrong color wrong product. Funny thing is, the one that's in decent shape--just the wrong radio--was an Amazon Warehouse deal! --Which is another reason I feel like it was a borrow/swap and return situation. Somebody got free shipping, got it quick, didn't even peel the film off the shiny plastic parts, swapped the card, convinced themselves that the item is still fine, just has a different card, not a worse one, and that someone could be happy with it...

If, on the off chance the person who did this (or has ever done this) is reading this (and that wasn't my intention, but I've seen people recommend fixing problems with this lock via swapping to a Zigbee card), please let this be the final word on it: You wasted hours of a fellow enthusiast's time with this. Sure, that lock is great for someone. If I wanted ZWave, I'd be very happy with what I got. But the dishonesty on your part about what's actually inside that box really isn't AMAZON'S problem. --It's mine. And possibly the next person's. (though I'm going to fold up a printed note in the quick start guide warning them that they are at least the 3rd owner, and the radio is ZWave, not Zigbee, and that Amazon has been made aware of this).



I feel for you. Its terrible to get all juiced to receive parts for a new project only to be deflated.

However I wouldn't give up. I've been buying used items on eBay and have had very good luck. I only purchase from those with 100% reputation (or close).

On Amazon I've not purchase a lot but when I did I stayed to the top one or two listed. But if the item is important (as a lock) I usually go for the new one as the warrantee is sure to be valid.

As zarthan said. I would go back to Amazon and be sure to tell them the item wasn't even close. I believe with enough of this type of negative feedback, the vendor will be dropped.


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I wouldn't bet the person who swapped the radio is the type that even cares. I was in HomeDepot one day at the service desk and a front door in a box was leaning against the counter. I was in a conversation with the sales assistant who mentioned the someone purchased a new door, returning the old door in the new door box. I guess the associated who accepted the return did not check the box. My point being, there are folks out there who don't think like you or I and don't give a damn about others.

Part of the problem is Amazon itself and how they deal with returns. If someone returns something and it is a commodity SKU, and not obviously damaged, it just goes into a pile that they pick from for any seller of that item. Zero way to track what customer ripped off a vendor. So it is really passive encouragement to the end user.

I have never bought anything used for my Home Automation, yet I still get used items. My original Wink was "new" and had to be factory reset as it was already assigned to an account. By the time I got it working, I just kept it. Bought a new RGBW Sengled bulb that I didn't open until after the return period and guess what.... single color bulb.

It really never used to be this way. New was new and used was used. Now new is opened and used is worthless.


New is opened and used is worthless...Well spoken!

Your Wink hub reminds me of my Ecobee...
When I mentioned the sensors above, that was one auction. I bought the actual thermostat separately. Just like yours, it was claimed to be "Brand new, never used."

The description went into great detail about how it was bought for someone else, was opened just to make sure it was in the box, never taken out, never installed, because they determined that it wasn't going to be compatible with their system. Tons of details about how it was never touched, never used.

When I got it, it was in great shape, but it had obviously been used. Hooked it up, and it had 3 months of logs and alerts on it, and was still actively tied to a homekit account.

So yeah...I guess "used for 3 months before we decided we didn't want it" means exactly the same thing as "never taken out of the box, only opened to see that it was in there." Mmmhm.

I once bought an exhaust fan at Home Depot...decided to buy the cheap fan and the upgrade kit for that fan with the more powerful motor.
But then when I got home, I realized that someone else had bought the upgrade fan, upgraded their fan with it, and put their old original fan in the upgrade fan box and returned it. Makes me sick that people are out there just getting away with this stuff. :rage:

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Yeah, that is BS. People that do something like that intentionally deserve a severe ass whipping.


Unfortunate I can't give you more than one like for that!

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I'll pile on


@rickyturner @Gnant @bjcowles @JasonJoel

I don't have a home automation related Amazon return sold as new, but I have something way more disgusting.

Two years ago, my garbage disposal died, and I decided to buy the Insinkerator Evolution Compact disposal. I bought it new with the cord kit (not Amazon warehouse; the vendor was

It arrived two days later in box that looked new and was sealed. Inside, the cord kit was ok, but the disposal itself was completely wrapped in Saran (not heavy plastic). There was an incredibly foul odor when I unwrapped the Saran. The damn thing had a bunch of partially ground up food inside the disposal. It had apparently jammed.

It got sent back. Amazon offered me 2 months free on my Prime subscription by way of "compensation".

Edit - the story ended with me spending half as much and installing a disposal purchased from Costco.

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AAAAH! NO! Unreal. How TF?

As an outsider, from a country where Amazon is nothing but a thing from the US, I say I see a red line in all these stories. It starts with an A and ends with mazon. :crazy_face:

Non the less in the Netherlands we also have such a holes who try this. But fortunately this country is so small I can drive everything in short times to make sure the product is good and have a face to face with the seller.

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Speaking as an Amazon vendor, the solution I have found is to simply package items in a way the packaging must be destroyed to open. Then all items are deemed unsellable and are automatically sent back. We then know who returned it and no switcharroos for the next customer on down the line. Saw a thread a while back where Hubitat received a Smartthings in one of their boxes as a return. Thought that spoke volumes.


None of this is a recent development. Almost 60 years ago my mother worked at a Kmart. She told me about people buying things like tents or canoes in the spring and returning them in the fall. Obviously used, they were accepted and money cheerfully refunded. It was policy.

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