I don’t usually write posts about things like this but, the experience I had when I purchased a treadmill from NordicTrack was extreme enough, that I want to recount it. I hope by doing so, I can save you a lot of money and grief. If you’re considering buying anything from NordicTrack, Proform, Weslo, or any other company managed by Icon Fitness, I don’t want you to be cheated like I was. Go with a company that’ll stand behind their product.
My experience is a long one as it lasted seven months. To summarize it, let me tell you it was the worst buying experience I’ve ever had in my life. With that said, let me tell you what happened when I bought a treadmill from NordicTrack.
I love running but, since my sons were born, it’s been a lot harder for me to get out and get a good run in as often as I’d like. Last year, I seriously started considering buying a treadmill, but I have limited space in my home and they’re not cheap!
I started looking into some of my options, just to see what price range I was looking at, and it wasn’t long before I came across Nordictrack’s website and saw their treadmills. I especially loved the folding ones because of the limited space in my home. I quickly decided that if I were to get one, the Commercial 1750 is the treadmill I would go with.
NordicTrack’s treadmills have all kinds of amazing features. They have fans on the treadmills, platforms to hold your weights, built in workouts with famous paths you can run with the treadmill inclining and declining as needed and so much more! They pretty much look like a dream treadmill for a crazy good price considering everything you’d get.
The treadmills I’d run on in the past looked archaic compared to the NordicTrack treadmill.
I looked at one treadmill review site after another, and every single one promoted the Nordictrack treadmills as the best you could buy for your home.
To top it off, Jillian Michaels is pretty much the face of the brand and I’d seen advertisements for years with her showing how incredible their incline trainer is. I didn’t think Jillian would allow her face to be on a product that wasn’t outstanding.
Finally, I decided I would get one and, when the Black Friday sale came, I called Nordictrack and bought the Commercial 1750 on credit through Fortiva which is the company they use now to help people who can’t pay for the treadmill up front to finance their purchase
The customer representative I talked to was very helpful and genial and the receipt for my purchase was sent to my email within 10 minutes.
I was so excited! I’d been thinking about purchasing that treadmill for months up to that point and now it was finally coming.
I waited, excited, to get an email about when the treadmill would be shipped out. However, two weeks later, I still hadn’t received a single email from Nordictrack. I went back to their website and saw that next year’s model had just been put on sale for $100 more than the one I’d just purchased.
The upgrades were pretty substantial so I called and asked if my original purchase had been shipped yet. The representative I spoke to said it hadn’t, but was being prepared. I asked about upgrading it to the newer model and he quickly approved it and said yes, we can do that for you. Five minutes later the receipt for the new model was sent to my email.
Again, I waited almost a week with no word or email from Nordictrack on whether my treadmill had been shipped out. Anytime I called the customer support line to ask about it, I waited on hold up to 30 minutes until I had to hang up. Emails I sent asking about when it would be shipped went unanswered.
Wondering what was up, and starting to feel uneasy, I started looking into Nordictrack again but, this time looked up customer complaints.
What I found horrified me. I’m not kidding when I say I found hundreds of complaints from Nordictrack customers.
I found out that some of the features I’d been most excited about, (the built-in workouts that the treadmill would incline and decline on its to replicate popular outdoor runs), couldn’t be used without paying a monthly subscription fee.
It can’t really be called a monthly subscription fee because they require you to pay for a full year up front and it adds up to several hundred dollars. To make things even worse these features were very buggy and many customers stated they were lucky if it worked half the time and Nordictrack refused to refund them for the purchase.
I found dozens of other customers who stated that not only had their treadmills been shipped weeks after they’d been promised, but they’d arrived broken or the team who they’d paid Nordictrack to have assemble it had no clue what they were doing and built it wrong rendering the machine unusable.
When these customers notified Nordictrack of the defective treadmill, the customer support representative they spoke to asked the customer to take apart the machine and diagnose the problem themselves and, based on what they found, replacement parts were sent out and the customers were asked to repair the treadmill with no help from an expert.
Nordictrack refused to send a treadmill technician out until the customer had tried and failed to diagnose it and repair it themselves. Oftentimes even if they did send an “expert” out the technicians were unable to diagnose the problem as well and ended up ordering wrong parts.
I read story after story and dread began to fill the bottom of my stomach. What was I supposed to do with a 300+ pound treadmill if it came in that state? I read dozens of stories from people whose ordeals lasted more than a year before they finally just got rid of the treadmill and took the hit to their pocket.
I decided I would cancel the order as soon as their offices opened in the morning. I pulled up my email and typed in the tracking number to see if it had shipped yet because I knew, if it had, there would be a significant restocking fee to pay to return it. To my relief, the treadmill had not yet been sent even though it’d been almost three weeks since my initial purchase.
The next morning, I called Nordictrack’s customer service line and, after waiting on the phone for over 40 minutes, I finally got someone on the phone to talk to. I asked if my order had been shipped out and the representative on the other line said no it had not yet, but that it should ship in the next day or two.
I breathed a huge sigh of relief and asked that the order be cancelled and said that I no longer needed it. The representative asked why and tried everything he could think of to get me to reconsider. He even offered to give it to me for a couple hundred dollars off what I’d initially paid.
I again stated that I no longer wanted the treadmill and asked that he cancel it. I could hear the reluctance in his voice as he said that he would and I asked him about the restocking fee. He clearly told me that no, my treadmill hadn’t even left the warehouse so there would be no restocking fee.
I hung up and felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulders and that I’d dodged a bullet. Boy, was I wrong.
The next day I got an email stating my treadmill had been shipped and was on its way to my home. I called NordicTrack again and waited on the phone for a while before I could talk to somebody about it. Finally, when I did, I explained the situation and was assured that no I wouldn’t need to pay a restocking fee because I’d canceled the order before it ever left the warehouse.
I hung up and, three days later, I checked the status of the Order and found that it was still on its way to my house. Frustrated, I called NordicTrack again. The last thing I wanted was a 300-pound treadmill left on my porch that probably wasn’t going to work.
This time the woman I spoke to was extremely rude and told me, if I wanted to cancel my order, I would have to pay a restocking fee of $300+. Upset, I told her exactly what had happened and that I’d already been told I wouldn’t have to pay the fee because I canceled it before they shipped it out. I didn’t know why it had shipped right after I canceled it. I felt like somebody had put a rush on my order as soon as they heard I didn’t want it so they could at least get the restocking fee out of me.
The woman I talked to refused to listen and told me she could cancel the order but I’d have to pay the fee. After talking some more, she finally said maybe she could help me out and give me a $100 discount on the restocking fee. Disgusted, I told her I wasn’t paying a restocking fee for something they’d purposely shipped right after I canceled my order.
I insisted that my order be canceled and she finally agreed to do so.
Over the next couple days, I saw that the treadmill was still on its way to my house and I made several more calls to Nordictrack. Each time was the same. I waited anywhere from 30-60+ minutes on hold to talk to somebody and, when I finally got someone, I was told by some representatives that yes, I still had to pay the restocking fee. However, I was told by other representatives that of course I didn’t have to pay the fee because they could see I’d requested to have the order canceled before it ever shipped.
Despite all this, at the end of December, I got a call from a local delivery company saying they had my treadmill and they wanted to know a good time to drop it off. I told the woman on the other line that I’d tried numerous times to get my order canceled and all my requests had been ignored. I told her I did not want the treadmill and to send it back to where it’d come from.
She agreed to do so and it was finally sent back to the warehouse.
I was relieved it was finally over.
In early January, I got a statement from Fortiva stating my account was now open and, I had 12 months to pay the full price of the treadmill. Upset, I called Fortiva and explained the situation. They said they would contact Nordictrack about it.
I called NordicTrack as well and, by this point, I couldn’t tell you how many countless hours I’d wasted on hold to talk to a representative at NordicTrack. When I finally talked to someone I was told it would take a couple weeks for the refund to be issued.
Fortiva put my account on hold when I told them this and said they would open a review on my account and I didn’t need to pay anything until the review was completed.
It took a month before the refund was issued from Nordictrack even though it’d taken all of five minutes to bill me initially. When the refund was issued, it was for the price of the treadmill minus the restocking fee so it still said I owed the $300+.
Angry and frustrated, I called yet again and was told the fee would be taken off and paid.
A month later it was down to $200 and I called Fortiva about it. They stated they couldn’t get through to NordicTrack’s customer service line and, if I didn’t want to have to pay it, I needed to call NordicTrack.
I tried yet again and failed and seven months after my initial purchase, I was told by someone at Fortiva there was nothing more they could do and Nordictrack refused to pay the remaining $200. They lifted the hold on my account and started applying insane late fees. I was sick and tired of the whole thing and felt like there was nothing I could do, so I ended up paying the whole thing.
NordicTrack is by far the worst company I’ve ever dealt with in my life. I’ve never talked to a customer support team who cared so little about their customers, the quality of their products, and who were downright dishonest in their dealings. They do anything they can think of to cheat their customers out of every penny.
I went back to the treadmill review sites as well as treadmill reviews on YouTube and, I started noticing that none of them ever get on the treadmill and run to show that it works. They all just turn it on and let it run when nobody is on it.
I also looked on my local classifieds and was shocked to find that in a 30-day time period there were more than 500 treadmills, ellipticals, incline trainers, and other pieces of exercise equipment from NordicTrack, Proform or Weslo put up for sale. No other brand of treadmill came close to those numbers. I had a hard time finding a single brand besides Icon Fitness brands that had more than 10 treadmills put up for sale in a given 30-day time period.
At any given time since then that I’ve looked, there are always a couple hundred up for sale. That many people in a 100-mile radius don’t just decide to sell a good quality product at the same time. This is another sign of just how bad their equipment is.
My own ordeal took 7 months to be resolved and believe it or not, I was one of the lucky ones. I’d read stories that were much, much worse from customers who had actually received their treadmills.
I can’t believe Jillian Michaels lets her name be used to promote products from a company as dishonest as NordicTrack, but she does even though the complaints have been there for years and they aren’t getting better.
Have you purchased any equipment from Icon Fitness or are you considering it? Do you know anybody who went through a similar experience or do you have questions for me? Please let me know by leaving a comment below!