Beyond disappointing, bordering on Fraud

Hello all,
Like many of you, I purchased a Librem 14. Mine arrived roughly 6 weeks ago and I had been using it for about one month until the laptop failed to charge. The charging issue has been brought up many times and has been documented by several users. Some have been able to catch it before it fully discharges, others have not. Some of those who have been through the RMA process with Purism have been through it multiple times.

Given the firmware which likely (nothing I have see guarantees this), is causing the issue was forked by Purism, the issue is theirs to fix permanently. Yet, somehow some users still have this issue.

I opened up a case with Purism and followed their RMA process to the letter. They give you a checklist, which I followed. Prior to doing anything, I asked the support rep if I could remove the SSD so that I could access the data. I was told I can. Per Purism’s own RMA checklist, it says to remove your data prior to sending the device in. Given that the device could not power on, and support knew this, I had to physically remove the SSD. I followed the process here

I had asked for a refund because I do not want to be one of the customers that has to wonder if the device is going to go through this same issue again and with some users, as mentioned before, they’ve been through it multiple times.

After patiently waiting, I was told that my refund request was denied due to the fact that there are scratches, dirt, and stains on the notebook. By Purism’s own support staff’s admission, there is no impact on functionality due to this. But they won’t do a refund anyway. Not only is this ridiculous, but it is also against the requirements companies must hold up in the EU (ref -

Asking your users to follow a process and then blaming them for doing so is counterintuitive and echos the spirit of companies Purism claims to be nothing like.

I was offered to have the motherboard replaced, which based on the previous issues some users are having, does not guarantee that the issue at hand is resolved permanently, since some users are clearly still impacted, some of them (oddly enough) even recurring.

Products must be reliable. Otherwise, I can go through the RMA process again and again with no end in sight. Is this really better than any other alternative?

I am not posting this to hate on Purism. In fact, I even had come to the conclusion that I want to support Purism in this thread.

But, no company that treats issues and it’s customers in this way is going to be around for long. From what I understand, Framework had a similar issue with the battery due to something going on in the BIOS and that update has resolved that issue (at least according to some of the users).

Customers should not be punished for purchasing your products. If anything, what I have learned through this process is that the Librem 14 is at best unreliable because you never know what is going to happen to it. Purism is going to ask you to do certain things and then when they feel like it, will come up with reasons to not refund you, even when they legally should.

Just to touch on the legally should part. If you ship to the EU, the EU considers you serving their market. This is why companies like Framework do not ship to all EU countries yet. And so, while this seems to be an oversight or lack of knowledge, you still should resolve recurring issues because it is smart for business so that forum posts like this (and others) don’t pop up.

I can always buy another notebook from a competitor, but at this point, I can pretty much kiss both my money and my laptop goodbye. Let’s see how long this post stays up. I am genuinely curious…


From (which you accepted before purchasing):

Return policy notes:

  • customer pays the return shipping
  • shipping costs are not refunded
  • Anti-Interdiction setup costs are not refunded
  • return request will be denied if not submitted within the 30-day period
  • return request will be denied if the customer does not reply to Purism within the 30-day period, even if communication with Purism has already started
  • return request can be denied if customer fails to ensure proper packaging of the device resulting in damage during transit
  • return request can be denied if device has signs of damage caused by a mishandle or misuse
  • return request can be denied if device was modified to temporary or permanently alter functionality or capability in any way (including but not limited to: permanent attachment of the screen privacy filter)

Let me know if you need the photos of the damage sent to you via email, I will not post them in public.


Given that the device could not power on, and support knew this, I had to physically remove the SSD.

This is simply not true, you DID not have to physically remove the drive, we thought you want to keep the drive and we approved this (its price would have been deducted from refund in that case).

You approved it. We are getting into semantics here. If the device does not power on yet you know I need to access the data, how else was I supposed to access it?

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Shouldn’t there be a difference between a refund due to the 30-day window and a refund due to a defective device (2 years warranty?).
If it is a warranty case, you should be able to get a repaired device. If that device fails again, you might have the legal right to get a refund. I am no legal expert, but I remember such a case from a few years ago, and the vendor had two attempts to repair the product (EU). After that, the buyer got his money back.
Of course, it depends on how much the device has been damaged by the buyer. I accidently dropped my L5 once on the street and it has scratches now. Luckily, the screen is undamaged. I don’t know if that did something to the internals, but the device still works well. However, dropping the L5 might limit the possibility for me to use the warranty. This is just theoretical because I really like the L5 and will keep it.


Are you tried charging your L14 by using Power Delivery if boot?
What EC version L14 had?
Did you have the L14 connected and charging all time when it stopped working? Or did you only charge the L14 when the battery was empty?
Purism already released an EC version(1.6) to extra protect the L14 board for Charging Failures.

I have no reason to check now or during the issue as by that time, the power had completely discharged. I have seen that there are solutions, but if so, it seems (speculation), like new Librems are shipping with this issue. If so why? Also, why are some users having recurring issues?

And, even if what I wrote is completely wrong, I feel like the current state of the issue leaves a lot to be desired in terms of transparency. They say it is fixed, but why is this an issue that some customers still deal with?

At this stage, no matter the outcome, there is no way I am going to buy any Purism product again.

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Your issue outcome will be fine, very best experience one you can get around (including EU member countries) but please continue to understand that Purism support Team is there for you (in order to repair product that you purchased from them, directly as they manufactured it) and not the other way around, talk to them (not to us). They will fix your purchased product (from Purism) under very particular RMA process that we, as Forum members, do not know much about and cannot help any further (other than by saying that we understand you well or telling you that you, please, need to understand someone else).

P.S. If you send them back undamaged product (but you didn’t) I might guess that Purism would send you back brand new Librem 14 with the very same specifications, perhaps even the very next day, but this is, as written, just my wild guess.


I would also add the question “why does Purism never address these issues publicly, as every company does?” You know, to reassure potential customers?

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Which companies do it?


Google, Nokia, ASUS… Lenova… you know. Those companies do.

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Google doesn’t respond publicly to an overwhelming majority of user posts on any of their platforms.
Here’s evidence of Nokia not responding to users on their own forum

Here’s Asus saying in 2017 that they will give updates on feedback they requested, 5 years later still not responding to said feedback

Lenovo forums are full of posts that don’t have public responses from Lenovo.

And before “well they can’t respond to everything” or “that’s not the same type of thing they’re not responding to” my point is simply that Purism is on par with the rest of the industry in responding to some things publicly some of the time. Not everything gets a public reply and not all conversations should take place in public.

And to the original point, Purism does respond to some of these things publicly, on their schedule not on your schedule. They tend to get the facts together before speaking and with regard to individual orders tend to prefer to have that conversation with the individual. This can be seen as trying to hide their mistakes but could also be seen as trying to avoid publicly shaming or embarrassing their customers. I’m sure there are examples of both situations and I’m sure the same could be said of nearly every company.


This review above discouraged me from buying one. The hardware issues are definitely on Clevo (manufacturer) and Purism can’t do much about it. System 76 (Purism using their coreboot) also gets it from them and customers frequently report problems. What is actually in Purism’s control is customer service. Your experience is painting a bad picture of it. Also, you have to keep in mind that a small company like that can’t afford the same return policy as the big players like Lenovo. You can see it in their own terms and conditions when checking out.
Unfortunately, that’s the price of supporting little guys trying to make a difference. For the same configuration, you pay more for sub par hardware and taking on a bigger risk with warranty and returns.
I’m rooting for their success and want to support them by purchasing on their products, but i just can’t afford taking chances with their hardware yet

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Purism laptops are not manufactured by Clevo. See @MrChromebox’s comment here:


At the moment so far i have found NO evidence that Purism uses Clevo, but System76 does use Clevo.
I have a L14 and everything work good, to me it is the best gnu laptop on market.
There are some issue but Purism it doing very good job to fix it all. We need to understands Purism that it is a small company and they not have much traction like big bad corporation.

I don’t know why i assumed that. In any case, the fact that they are not in charge of the build quality remains the same.

I guess i was wrong on that specific manufacturer. Still, my point was that they can’t control quality of hardware. And the hardware is inferior to ThinkPads or other brand in the same price range.

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Absolutely none.

Are we are talking about a major problem that affects the trust that a customer can have in the product that a company sells?

Anyway… We have evidence of several laptops that have problems with battery charging. Other with keyboard keys that don’t work properly. Even if they confirm that a quality control is applied, I find it hard to believe given the number of new problematic cases that appear. I am not rich. I can’t be asked to throw 2500 canadian dollars on a laptop, when I can afford a Lenovo Carbon X1 for about the same price… Come on Purism. Offer a REAL premium laptop. Or give us some hope.