$40 charge added to new PC sale due to 'necessary' BIOS flash, leads to underhand sales claims

Circuit City accused of selling faulty laptops

Reports have emerged that Circuit City is charging $40 to repair laptops it allegedly acknowledges are faulty at the point of retail.

The Consumerist reports that a customer of the chain, which is the second largest consumer electronics retailer in the US behind Best Buy, was told by the firm’s own-brand tech-specialists Firedog that his new laptop wouldn’t "work unless you buy this," referring to its in store set up service.

According to the letter the site received, the customer was told: "You’ll need to upgrade the system if you plan on using it for anything beyond surfing the web," before being offered upgrades for the graphics, hard drive and memory.

After refusing to buy any of the upgrades offered, the customer – who according to the letter is a computer purchaser for the company he works for – paid for the product only to notice a $40 surcharge from Firedog.

When pushed for a reason, the Circuit City sales associate told the customer the BIOS needed flashing, despite – according to the customer – Vista working perfectly well without it.

The Consumerist goes on to point out that if the BIOS did indeed need flashing, then the laptop was faulty before purchase.

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