Thursday, November 1, 2012

Tips To Try Before You Toss!

Several years ago, I bought a crock pot from a department store. I rarely used it because I rarely cooked and the lid latch was very annoying and unhandy. One time I had made Hormel chili dip in the crock, and the plastic part of the lid cracked releasing the two tiny metal pins that were holding it in place. I had a ton of dip in that crock and didn't want to toss it, so I spooned through all of it to find the two tiny pins. For the next year and a half, that crock took up space in our garage with all the little parts in a zip lock bag just waiting for a solution. The crock pot was several years old, I didn't have the receipt, and I didn't figure there was much hope for it. When we moved, Greg asked if there was a need to keep it. I told him to pitch it because I couldn't use it without a lid, and it was just taking up space. He leaned toward hanging onto it, so I inspected the bottom and found an 800 number. After spending just a couple of minutes on the phone with a very nice CSR, she informed me that a new lid was on its way. All I had to give her was the model #.  A week later, I have a new lid and it didn't cost me more than 2 minutes to make the phone call.

Back in 2001, my parents helped me purchase a digital piano. They had previously loaned me their upright, but with moving and wanting to use the piano at different venues, a lighter weight digital seemed like a good solution. The Clavinova has served me well for these 11 years, but a couple of years ago (about the time the kids started practicing on it) it started to develop some sticky keys. I figured it was because of the extra wear and tear. After awhile, it became frustrating to try to play, and having to practice for weddings with sticky keys was no fun. I checked with a guy from church who knows quite a bit about electronics, and keyboards in particular, and he didn't seem to think there was much hope for it. I knew it wasn't something that I wanted to spend hundreds of dollars on, since the whole piece only cost $2,000 eleven years ago. I called our local Clavinova dealer, and the owner informed me that Clavinova had done a keyboard recall because of faulty keys and that my model might be eligible. Within just a couple of days, he and another employee came out and removed my old keyboard and installed another from the factory. After he put it all back together, he began to play it and noticed some squeakiness in the pedals some excess stress noise, so he and the other guy flipped it over and tightened all of the bolts for me.  Works like a charm now!  And all for a $100 trip/labor charge. 

If you have something that isn't working quite right or has broken without abuse, check the product or the internet for a phone number and call the service dept.  I can't guarantee it will always work in your favor, but these two items made it well worth it for me to do a little checking!


  1. You wouldn't believe the money I have saved by calling the manufacturer. For example, a new exhaust manifold for my Honda Civic (they extended the warranty because of this problem; not bad for 130,000 miles and about 13 years old.) I called the Vornado heater place and got two free replacements because of recalls. Also, a hair clipper that stopped working after a very little time. Not to mention, sump pumps. Oh, I have learned that it pays to call the 800 number when things go wrong, esp. the expensive things. Have a good day. Enjoyed the post.
    P.S. Had to republish due to a typo...:)

    1. That's awesome! I remember when I had my first car - Honda Accord that I loved - there was an issue with rust around the gas tank. I took it in thinking it was gonna cost an arm and a leg, but it had been recalled (even though my car was about 12 years old) and they fixed it free. :-)

  2. Wow-- that's great!!! Def. something to remember for future "throw-aways". I guess once again the theory holds true, "can't hurt to ask....".

  3. Good for you, girl. That's so awesome you were able to get fixes for these little or no cost to you!


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