What will we miss Tomorrow?

I have a favorite towel.  It’s so old, I have no idea where it came from.  It’s super long, which is great for good wrapping coverage out of the shower.  And it’s really soft, like an old pair of jeans that you have worn everywhere.  A section of the towel is worn through, and my boyfriend has repeatedly commented that it’s outlived it’s useful life.  ABSOLUTELY NOT!  It still functions perfectly for my use.  I would be in favor of replacing the towel, but a search of the product name produced no results.  So I believe the company either changed names or went out of business.  Besides, who can survive making good products anymore?

Last year I purchased an immersion blender to ease with blending soups.  When it comes to kitchen items, I rely on the testing and comments by America’s Test Kitchen, I’m actually signed up through Cooks Illustrated to access their recipes and product info.  After extensive testing, they recommended the Kaloric Sunny Morning blender.  Later that year they revised the recommendation and I had a similar bad report to other people, after maybe 5 uses on soup the motor burned out.  I should have read the instruction booklet immersion-blenderdescribing the operating instructions and promptly returned the item.  You can’t operate the blender for more than 1 minute which must be followed by 10 minutes of rest.  That would require about 30 minutes to blend my soup completely.  So back to square 1 for research.

This time I thought to read the product operation manual online before purchasing.  Many amazon shoppers report loving their KitchenAid hand blender that lasted 7 or 10 years, and the revised test kitchen report also recommends that product.  After purchasing, I’m reading some reports of complications with the new model version of this blender.  No motor problems, but the connection of the motor to the shaft has a plastic piece that can break.  I hope this one lasts, but if not, I’m writing to KitchenAid and the Test Kitchen group.  The lack of descriptive information about the motor in all KithenAid info is a bit unsettling for me; if this one breaks, it appears that all major brands use the same plastic connection element so I will be struggling to find a suitable replacement.

It seems like all manufacturers are capitalizing on their past reputation of quality products to sell really cheap goods.  I don’t mind paying extra for reliable products from manufacturer’s like KitchenAid, Pella, Anderson Windows, etc.  But as we are learning in the building design, the products are cheaply made and do not perform well long term.  This certainly helps the economy, when people warranty_nuevohave to replace products every year.  But what is it doing to the environment, and our psyche that we can’t find anything of value.  No wonder we don’t want to spend a lot of money, we can barely stomach the issue of cheap stuff failing before their time.

Product warranties have very short lifespans, 1 year and sometimes 2.  In the world of building materials, even with a warranty you typically have to hire a lawyer to get manufacturers to own up to their responsibilities, and then spend a year arguing while the manufacturer blames anyone who even looked at the product for errors.

I read a post once of someone struggling through difficulties with multiple appliances.  We all struggle to find legitimate online consumer reviews.  Who can we trust?  Know any good repairmen to recommend?

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