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Small victories

Happy Friday to all.  Weekend is almost here!

In the midst of my months-long job search and attack of multiple home-based projects that I’ve detailed here previously, I’ve also used some of my time to address a number of one-off needs for assistance from the makers of various items.  Looks like I’ve gotten resolution on many of them.  Here’s a sampling.

Right after I was displaced, I was cleaning my grill and discovered that my wet-dry vacuum motor was giving out.  So I bought another one, a good brand from a national retailer.   Six gallon capacity tank, attachments, pretty much everything you’d need.

The only problem was that most every time I picked this thing up to move it, the tank would come loose from the main motor assembly. The two were held together by clips and for whatever reason they simply would not stay clipped when the additional stress of picking up the unit occurred.

I e-mailed the manufacturer, and, unbelievably, was told that they recommended I pick it up by the bottom!  I did a bit of online research and found numerous instances of ad copy that noted a “convenient top carry handle” on this model.    I sent excerpts of these ads, and, wouldn’t you know it, they told me that there had been numerous complaints about this and they would send me replacement latches ASAP.  The replacements came with horrible directions, but I was able to replace them and now my vac functions as intended.

Here’s another one:  on an interview trip I was using my noise-cancelling headphones (if you travel by plane regularly and don’t have a pair of these, you MUST get some, particularly now that you can plug in and turn on music or video as soon as you board the plane!) and the mesh bag that Velcros to the back of the case had a complete zipper failure.  Luckily, I removed the contents of the bag (a spare battery) right before this happened.  But now I had no storage bag for adapters, batteries, etc.

I contacted the manufacturer via their online contact form, and in the meantime spoke with someone about an unrelated matter.  That person told me that, no, they don’t have replacements of that bag.  Oh, well, I thought.  Then a different agent responded to my online inquiry and asked for my headphones’ serial number.  I sent that and my address and they’re sending me an entirely new case, no charge.  Not bad.

One more and I’ll stop.  I bought a unique pair of eyeglasses several years ago.  Totally different from what I have traditionally worn, but they’re light, comfortable and pretty good looking.  The manufacturer gave a three year warranty and actually replaced the entire frame, custom to my head measurements, after some problems occurred with the original.  In any case, the current version of the frame has been fine until recently, when some whitish areas began to show up.

My optician no longer carries this line, so I attempted to contact the company, which is based in England.  I wound up having a lot of friendly correspondence with a woman who works for them there, and she eventually referred me to an equally helpful person in Chicago.  They first wanted me to send the glasses in to them, but since I don’t have a spare pair with my current prescription, I told them that would not work.  So finally they agreed to send me some “care cream,” which is a conditioner for the frame materials (they’re made of a high-cotton acetate, so apparently they require special attention).  I received it yesterday, and my glasses look about as good as they did when new.

I suppose that it’s been fortunate that I’ve had the time to deal with some of these issues, so it’s a good thing that these, at least, have turned out well.


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