ICOM VHF repair (cheap)
I bought an ICOM M422 new from Defender about 5 years ago. It started acting strangely a few months ago in that it would receive transmissions for a few seconds to a minute after turning it on and then it would not receive unless the squelch was nearly turned off. I was able to confirm that the radio was transmitting loud and clear. My dilemma was to fix a 5 year old radio that already had a RAM mic mounted in the cockpit or buy new. I called the main US ICOM facility in Washington and they said to send it in. To check the radio would cost $42 and they would tell me what the repair would cost beyond that plus return shipping. On their website I found another regional ICOM repair facility much closer. After speaking with one of their technicians, he told me that ICOM had a bad batch of filters and he was pretty confident that was the problem. Here is the kicker, he told me ICOM would cover it free of charge even though the radio was out of warranty!!!!! I mailed the radio to them and just got it back today, in less than a week, which is a miracle in itself here in the Islands...
Total cost was about $15 for shipping to them. They covered the return shipping.
One could look at this many ways. Why did ICOM's main location wish to charge me a minimum of $42 plus return shipping when a regional repair place didn't?:hothead If ICOM knew they had bad parts in an important safety device, why didn't they contact registered owners?:hothead You could also say that fixing a 5 year old radio (two years out of warranty) for free is very good customer service.
Bottom line, I'm happy to have my radio back and working for such a small investment. If you have an ICOM that is having similar problems, it might be worth a few calls and some postage.
Re: ICOM VHF repair (cheap)
I have an iCom M34 handheld that exhibited similar symptoms. I could not receive unless the squelch was set to 0. I believe that I purchased the unit in 2007.
I contacted iCom, and they instructed me to sent it in to their main repair depot. They also required authorization to charge my credit card for up to $82 (or thereabout). They returned it to me working 100% and classified it as an upgrade, and therefore covered under warranty. Total cost to me was shipping, or ~$7!
The radio worked very well from 2007-2012.
Re: ICOM VHF repair (cheap)
I had the same experience this summer with my four year old ICOM IC-M504 VHF transceiver. Under the advice from Hamilton Marine, I sent mine in to Williams Communications, Inc. in Tallahassee, FL (likely the same ICOM regional repair facility used by the OP). ICOM had a bad batch of RF filters in these radios - the repair was free, even though the unit was out of warranty. All it cost was one-way shipping to Florida. What a pleasant surprise!! ;)
Re: ICOM VHF repair (cheap) ???......... NOT SO
My IC-M422 was new in '09. Reception issue popped up this year (2015).
ICOM replacced the FI3 (or F13) filter on the main unit board.
They called it Warranty. No charge.
Fortunately, my loss of use did not occur at a critical time.
They should have called us. They knew.
I spent a lot of time validating my antenna system and bought a backup handheld before keying in on the ICOM.
ICOM is NOT a stand up company.
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