Monday, February 4, 2008

A Conundrum

Why is is that when an item you have had for many years finally breaks and needs to be replaced, that the replacement item doesn't last nearly as long?

Case in point #1. I had a little travel hair dryer that I think was about 10 years old when it finally kicked the bucket. I used this hair dryer almost daily. It may have even gone through a minor repair or two (via dh) before it finally burst into flames (or however it died). I went through about 4 hairdryers in less than two years after replacing "old faithful". The dryer I have right now - I purchased a couple of months ago - we'll see how long it lasts.

Case in point #2. When I married my dh he had a nice answering machine. It was the old "tape recorder" variety with a mini tape inside. I don't know if he bought it new originally - but that one was with us for about 10 years or so also before it stopped speaking to us. We tried out about 2 answering machines before we got our present one, which does not have the old mini tape - and it's still pretty mediocre.

Case in point #3. Our dish washer. We've had it less than 2 years. It's not broken thankfully - but I've noticed that that door has begun sticking. We haven't really investigated the problem yet so it may be something very simple - but the old dishwasher washed many a dish before we even bought the house that came with the dishwasher...and washed many of our dishes before it decided to retire. But other than it's injury that forced it into retirement (getting stuck on cycles) - there was no other problem with it.

Do you all have similar problems? An appliance big or small that you've had years of fun with, only to replace it again and again in a short time period??


Lynda said...

Oh yes! We were given a hand mixer with a puree stick attachment as a wedding present. (that was 20 years ago) - about 5 years ago the beaters died, but the puree stick still works. I have bought 2 more puree sticks since then.. both of them crap and I continue to hang onto the old one because it is so good. So far that mixer has been from Germany - to Turkey - to India - to Sri Lanka - to Australia and is now on its way to Egypt... Great post!

TJ said...

My hairdryer of many years did spark at me. So I asked on freecycle and recieved a used one. That lasted about a year, before it too sparked and smoked and died. I bartered this time. An older electric typewriter for a used conair hair dryer. I just can't make myself spend all the money on a new one because I know it won't last.

Now we had to give up our old phone with tape style machine built in. So I bought an inexpensive Uniden in 2004 with built-in, non tape answering machine. Hubby then left the handset on the back of my mom's car. One year later (after a good snowy winter) I found that handset taped to a bike-route pole a few houses down from my mom's. I recharged it, and it still worked, and better than the inexpensive replacement.