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Old 02-07-2009, 12:59 AM
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Extended Warranties and the Decline In Quality

I don't think that I'm alone in the belief that "extended warranty" offers are typically schemes that are a bad investment. I think I learned this from spending for those things on products I bought that never broke, like lawn mowers, washers & dryers, and luckily . . . the Mercedes . . .

However, in doing research on the iMac that wandered into the house with a defective LCD screen, and reading many of the posts and threads by Apple owners trying to get answers or responses from the company, I've seen quite a few posts by folks whose opinion that not buying the $100+ AppleCare extended warranty was foolish by these suffering consumers and "they got what they deserved."

It reminds me of two other situations, Apple's iPod battery debacle and Dell's "leaky capacitors" of a few years back. In both cases, the company tried to avoid confronting the issue, but consumers armed with attorneys and class action suits won either rebates for repairs or had the warranty period extended,

I beginning to think that an extended warranty will have to be considered on purchases in the future.

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Old 02-07-2009, 01:31 AM
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I personally avoid extended warranties like my ex-girlfriend(the plague). I have only considered them in the past for extremely high ticket items like the new truck I purchased 10 years ago.

The quality of consumer goods in this country has gone downhill fast in the 10 - 15 years. I avoid the new high-tech stuff because of quality issues. The last TV was 6 years ago when the new flats were the rage, I stuck with the tube workhorse Sony Trinitron. My buddy has had 2 flat screens in that time and his latest, at only 2 years old, requires the use of the remote to turn on because 3 of the buttons on the set itself refuse to function.

I could go on and on with examples of the trash that is on the market today. It seems like manufactures have forgotten how to produce simple quality products.

Seems like it is working pretty good for them. Here, buy this piece of junk and we will see you again in 5 years or buy this piece of junk and this pricy 5 year extended warranty and we will see you in 6.
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Old 02-07-2009, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 79-240d-project View Post
I could go on and on with examples of the trash that is on the market today. It seems like manufactures have forgotten how to produce simple quality products.
They haven't forgotten at all. When you said

Quote:
Originally Posted by 79-240d-project View Post
Seems like it is working pretty good for them. Here, buy this piece of junk and we will see you again in 5 years or buy this piece of junk and this pricy 5 year extended warranty and we will see you in 6.
You hit the nail on the head. This is has been the prevalent business model for the last 15 years or so when it comes to so-called "consumer durables". Build it just well enough to get beyond the warranty that we offer as the manufacturer. When it breaks in a few years, consumers won't repair it. They'll choose to replace it with a newer, flashier model with more bells and whistles. This keeps people going into stores to buy things, and keeps filling up garbage dumps with the detritus of our society. It dovetails in quite nicely with the move towards ofshore production of most of this stuff, which is cheaper not only because of reduced labour costs but also because of the less exacting manufacturing tolerances that are considered acceptable.

Welcome to consumer culture.
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Old 02-07-2009, 01:30 PM
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Call Apple. My MacBook was out of warranty, and they still replaced the casing that was starting to fall apart.
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Old 02-07-2009, 09:50 PM
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Most new stuff on the market today is junk, although some good things are still made you just have to pay for them. My Orvis fly rods have a 25 year warranty on them. If I break one I'll bring it back up to the barn where it was made in VT and they will fix it...even if it was my fualt...now thats standing behind your product!
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Old 02-08-2009, 01:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 79-240d-project View Post

I could go on and on with examples of the trash that is on the market today. It seems like manufactures have forgotten how to produce simple quality products.

Seems like it is working pretty good for them. Here, buy this piece of junk and we will see you again in 5 years or buy this piece of junk and this pricy 5 year extended warranty and we will see you in 6.
You said that so well! That is the very reason I would never want a oooo ahhhh brand new 100% electrical/computerized Mercedes-Benz or any new car for that matter. It's the sole reason I drive a 1970 220D
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Old 02-08-2009, 01:17 AM
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Originally Posted by 79-240d-project View Post
It seems like manufactures have forgotten how to produce simple quality products.
Manufacturers gave the consumer what he/she/it wanted. Most consumers don't want a product that you can say "She. Give you everything you want. Boom Boom long time.". Labor is expensive so when it breaks, you have to ask yourself if it is worth it to fix. People are more mobile today so they have less time to spare. Take the old Zippo. Who wants to screw with fuel and flints? Well, it is cheaper in the long run but people would rather throw the old and get the new.
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Old 02-08-2009, 01:24 AM
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Originally Posted by JordaanDMC-12 View Post
You said that so well! That is the very reason I would never want a oooo ahhhh brand new 100% electrical/computerized Mercedes-Benz or any new car for that matter. It's the sole reason I drive a 1970 220D
I haven't had any real problems with my 99 E300. Of course there are horror stories of a $80K car that didn't make it out of the dealer lot, etc, etc. My electrical problems in this car were traced to the PO who installed all sorts of electrical stuff poorly and the Xenon lights I installed. None of which were related to that car itself. Would I hesitate to buy a new car tomorrow? Probably because I don't want to take the depreciation. Other than that, would I take a 3 yo car? If the price is right. I like the creature comforts and I am not afraid of the electrical demons that give Luddites nightmares.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:55 PM
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If I can afford to replace it, I don't bother with an extended warranty.

Mail-in rebates don't entice me either....what a PITA.
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:16 PM
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If I can afford to replace it, I don't bother with an extended warranty.

Mail-in rebates don't entice me either....what a PITA.
I have heard of some people that buy a laptop say at $2000 and a $250 service plan. At the end of the 3 yrs, the laptop seems to get into all kinds of problems and after 3 repairs, has to be lemoned out.
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Old 02-09-2009, 05:03 PM
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I've had my JVC TV for, let's see, thirteen years. It's an elephant, weighs seventy-five pounds; once I set it in place wherever I move, it stays there. I've had one repair in that time, which came to about $200.

Replace it? With what? Where can I find a flat-screen TV with a decent size screen for $200? Every single one seems to run closer to $400 or $500.

I can buy several repairs for that kind of money. Sure, a lighter-weight TV would be nice -- but at $$$, I'm pretty happy with this one.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:42 PM
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I have heard of some people that buy a laptop say at $2000 and a $250 service plan. At the end of the 3 yrs, the laptop seems to get into all kinds of problems and after 3 repairs, has to be lemoned out.
Just noting the price changes over the years . . . it can be pretty hard to find a $2K laptop, except for the "bleeding edge" units like a fully decked out Air.
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Old 02-09-2009, 06:48 PM
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Just noting the price changes over the years . . . it can be pretty hard to find a $2K laptop, except for the "bleeding edge" units like a fully decked out Air.
Ah but so what? Say your new Laptop costs $1000, you can get the balance in say a dishwasher or washing machine, etc, etc.
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:22 PM
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I tend to stay away from them, to me they are a waste of money, if something is going to fail, it tends to do so before the warranty period is up. The Vizio TV we have in the living room had the power supply fail about a month after purchase, it is almost 2 years later, and it is working strong.
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Old 02-09-2009, 09:00 PM
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Its true in electronics that unless you reeeeally research for the quality products, or spend a ton to get the top of the line, its going to fail. Computer power supplies are the bane of my existence. I've had probably 7 fail in the past few years on my various computers. All of various overkill output capability and price ranges.

Eventually the throw-away society will have to end.

In Michigan thats in 21 years, thats how much landfill space we have left currently.

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