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August 1, 2010
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September 16, 2010

Why didn’t my part last?

Being a computer retailer, we sell a multitude of parts. We sell monitors, keyboards, RAM, hard drives, optical drives, processors, video cards, sound cards, wireless cards, power supplies, flash card, USB memory sticks, and on and on and on and on.

We produce 0% of the parts we sell. We buy parts from the manufactures, and we sell it to you.

The manufacturers who build the products include a warranty on their products. There are a few different types of warranties explained in great detail here. When we sell a part, we pass on that manufacturers warranty to our customers.

Recently the manufactures have been lowering their standard warranty. For many years it was 1 year. We all knew any new part came with a 1 year warranty. The days of the 1 year standard warranty are gone. Not only have they reduced the warranty, they have also instituted policy that makes it so that the end user has to send the part back to the manufacturer for warranty repair or replacement. While this doesn’t seem like a big change, i assure you it is very significant.

If you buy something from your local retailer and it breaks, you will take it back to where you got it. You will walk in with your receipt and defective item and expect an off the shelf replacement. The recent manufacturer policy changes makes it so that you can’t take it back to the store where you purchased it. You have to send it back to the manufacturer. That is much more hassle than returning it to the place of purchase. Many will not bother, and just buy a replacement.

My theory is, the retailer (us) has a 99% chance of sending that defective part back to the manufacturer. The end user (you) has a 50% chance of sending the part back. Less returned parts equal more profits for the manufacturers. That slight policy change probably saves them millions.

We go to great lengths to sell parts that have the best “value”. We value our parts based on warranty, reliability, track record and price. We spend generous amounts of time researching parts before deciding what to sell to our customers.

Even with that, sometime parts break. We hope they make it to the 1 year mark. If it does have a problem within 6 months, we’ll send it back and get a replacement for you. If it goes out after 6 months, you will have to send it back for a replacement. Not that we don’t want to send it back for you, they will not accept it from us after 6 months. Each manufacturer is different, but most of their policies seem to be headed that way.

I wish stuff would last. I wish you could buy something and not have to worry about having to replace it any sooner than 5 years. I hate not being able to take it back to the place of purchase.I hate replacing things i just bought period!

I know why things are cheaply built and don’t last these days. Price moves sales. It is proven that a $4.85 item will sell faster than a $4.95 item. Eventually the company making the $4.95 item goes out of business because nobody will buy their part. Either they cut corners and find a way to sell it for $4.80 or they go out of business.

Then we are stuck with the cheaply built $4.85 part.