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Don't buy from So Cal Tropical Fish


whitrose02

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whitrose02

So I just got through the worst aquarium hobby sales experience I've had so I thought I would share to save some people from a similar experience. I'm in the middle of setting up a 70g mixed reef (we're transitioning from our 40br and a 20g tank in our bedroom) so we needed some hardware.

 

I ordered a set of JBJ ocean pulse wavemakers and a 800w heater from SoCalTropical and was happy to support a local company. I made my purchase through paypal. I received the proper "transaction complete" message through paypal, but suspiciously nothing from SoCal. Sometimes you don't get anything from the original vendor, so I decided to wait and see.

 

At 5 days, I messaged SoCal via the only contact information available on their website and I tried their store via a phone number I had to look up on google (it's not listed anywhere on their site). No answer to either method. Not even a voicemail on the phone number. I started to get concerned, but I thought I'd give it another week before filing a formal complaint with paypal.

 

2 weeks passed... still nothing. No email, no call, no message via paypal (despite the vendors claim later that she tried to contact me). Then at the end of 2 1/2 weeks, just as I was about to file a fraud complaint, a package comes in. I am relieved. I open it to find out they shipped ONLY THE WAVEMAKER! Unbelieveable... Worse still, there's nothing else in the box. No notice of delay of shipping, not even an invoice showing what order this is for? How unprofessional.

 

...but fortunately for me UPS requires a phone number from the vendor on the shipping label, so now there's a new phone number on the box I can call. I leave a voicemail explaining the time this has taken, the problem with the shipping, receiving absolutely zero information from them the entire time, etc...

 

4 more days pass. I should have filed a fraud claim with PayPal but what can I say, I'm too nice I guess. I called the new number and the store (from the google search) every one of those 4 days. Finally on the 4th day someone picks up the phone. She informs me that "she tried contacting me through PayPal" and the heater is on backorder. I tell her I've tried calling the store, emailing through the website, and calling the number UPS had all with zero response for over a month. She DOES NOT APOLOGIZE. She doesn't even feign apologeticness. She tells me she'll refund me through paypal if I "won't" wait. Um, yes? Give me my money back! Ironically - she has no problem refunding me via paypal... it takes her 20 minutes. So I guess perhaps she knows how to use paypal afterall.

 

So much for ordering locally - I picked up something from Amazon in 2 days! So - take it from me - don't order from So Cal Tropical Fish Outlet. They obviously don't know how to handle customer service, orders via their website, paypal, or really general common courtesy. It really is unfortunate, because I want to order locally, but obviously it doesn't work.

 

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Mr. Microscope

Dang! That sucks. You should send google that extra phone number for them. Thank you for sharing your experience.

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their phone number and address are listed at the bottom of their website, that you linked. Also included is the owner's Facebook

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  • 4 weeks later...
JavaJacketOC

This store is actually pretty close to me and I've been there a couple times. I was also informed by another reefer that the owner of this store is also the owner of Sexy Corals as Tenor stated.

 

Interestingly, if you look up the sexy coral website they have a boat load of fancy expensive chalices. It would probably lead you to believe that the store or housing facility that your $1500.00 (that's correct, fifteen hundred) 1 eye frag of "SCs' Dynamite Chalice" would be in pretty pristine condition but it's quite the opposite.

 

Of the 6 or so tanks with coral for sale almost of them are are riddled with aptasia and/or red cyano and I mean a lot. The first time I visited this store there was a very strong, unpleasant odor from one of his sumps (not a fish tank smell, more like a dirty diaper smell) that literally turned my stomach.

 

He has a lot of very nice stuff and from the looks of his various websites, it looks like he has made a name for his lineage...however I have forced myself to walk out of his store the 2 times I've gone there solely based on the condition of his tanks.

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  • 5 months later...

The phone numbers listed on the website and facebook contacts get you nowhere. I tried them both, then went to google. REALLY bad customer service.

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The phone numbers listed on the website and facebook contacts get you nowhere. I tried them both, then went to google. REALLY bad customer service.

 

Socal Tropical Fish sold the store to another person now. It's now called "IGotCorals".

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JavaJacketOC

Socal Tropical Fish sold the store to another person now. It's now called "IGotCorals".

 

I recently heard this and decided to pop in. The new store is still being established but is actually in great condition. I haven't bought anything from them yet but will be visiting again soon.

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IGOTCORALS is a great shop. Isn't the closest LFS for me, but I make my way there every week or two. Bryan is a good dude and sells his corals at awesome prices. Look out for when he has sales, which is quite often...almost guarantee you'll get something that day!

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