Built-in obsolescence is the practise of making products that break. The benefits for the companies making these products is obvious- consumers need to buy products sooner- so they make more money. This is something that big brand manufacturers are doing all over the world. Industries such as the motoring, mobile phone, computing, kitchen appliance and home entertainment industries are some of the more notorious culprits, but it is really any company that makes something that is now thought of as essential- so they can be sure that you’ll come back.
Modern fridges are a really good example of built-in obsolescence. A fridge built in the 60’s lasted 20-30 years on average. Compare that to a modern appliance which lasts a maximum of 10 years and you begin to see the extent of the problem. We have better technology, more know-how and advanced manufacturing techniques- yet our fridges are lasting for a fraction of the time. Proof if proof were needed.
This is annoying… to say the least.
But there are somethings you can do.
First- pick a make and model that can be repaired easily. Accept that whatever you buy, no matter how well you look after it- it is going to breakdown. You can limit your costs by making sure that the product your buying can be repaired without having to send it back to the maker- who have a vested interest in you buying a new model.
Next- find an independent, local repairs company you can trust. One of the things that the manufacturer is hoping will happen is that you will keep asking them to repair the product, at a higher rate than necessary, thus raising their revenue per unit.
If you follow these 2 simple pieces of advice, you can beat the system and limit the amount built-in obsolescence is costing you.
Say for example you live in Seattle and you are in the market for a new refrigerator. Spending on refrigerator repair with the maker is inevitable and expensive. Unless, before purchasing- you speak with a local refrigerator repair company. An independent refrigerator repair company will be able to tell you what model to buy that can be repaired cheaply, avoiding the need to buy a new refrigerator or to get it repaired by costly in-house teams.
Things to look for in a refrigerator repair company (or indeed- any repairs firm) are: properly trained technicians, fast response, 24/7 response, customer testimonials and a 100% guarantee. If you live in Seattle- check out this refrigerator repair service.
This is a great way of supporting local, independent business and of keeping outgoings to a minimum. Of course, it isn’t just fridges. Luckily, this simple method of beating built-in obsolescence can work for loads of different essential. Getting a new mobile? Check with a phone repair store for models that have screens that can be repaired cheaply and easily. When your essential gadget dies before its time- it doesn’t need to be the end.