Thursday, August 15, 2013

The "W" Word

"Yes, my bike has a kickstand on it, and the little foot at the bottom of the kickstand fell off, so my bike fell over onto a post and it dented the top tube.  I'd like it considered for..."

I'm thinking, "Don't say it.  Don't you dare let that fucking word escape your lips..."


Goddamnit.  Even when the claim is legitimate, I hate the W-word.  There has never been a positive discussion around the warranty of a product, unless you shop at good ol' REI, in which case you could return an item they've never sold, or because you change your mind, or because you're a douchebag, or if you have a SRAM product, in which case they seem to have a shotgun approach to quality control, in which they anticipate a 50% return rate and plan accordingly.  I've heard Campy had a no questions asked warranty policy in the good ol' days as well, but I'm gonna corral this before it turns into a full blown, no holds barred, back when people had ethics, retrogrouchathon, but it does illustrate what a warranty is for, and what it is not for.

Read most warranties, and you will come across the following or something similar:  "This item is guaranteed for X years from date of purchase against defects in materials or worksmanship." 

Don't get me wrong.  I believe in protecting consumers, which is what a warranty is supposed to do.  That's where the clause, "defects in materials or worksmanship" come into play.  What that says is, "Hey, if we fucked this up, we'll make it right.  Mea culpa." 

What it does not say is, "Hey, we'll replace your shit even if it broke because you were any or all of the above: stupid, willfully ignorant, abusive, unlucky, and/or negligent."  Take some responsibility for the care and upkeep of your shit.  Pay attention to it, or make friends with people who will. 

And always, always remember: SHIT HAPPENS.

No comments:

Post a Comment