Thursday, July 17, 2008

Planned Obsolescence ~ R.I.P Rotary Tool

From Wikipedia:

Planned obsolescence is the process of a product becoming obsolete and/or non-functional after a certain period or amount of use in a way that is planned or designed by the manufacturer.[1] Planned obsolescence has potential benefits for a producer because the product fails and the consumer is under pressure to purchase again, whether from the same manufacturer (a replacement part or a newer model), or from a competitor which might also rely on planned obsolescence.[1]

For an industry, planned obsolescence stimulates demand by encouraging purchasers to buy again sooner if they still want a functioning product. Built-in obsolescence is in many different products, from vehicles to light bulbs, from buildings to software. There is, however, the potential backlash of consumers who learn that the manufacturer invested money to make the product obsolete faster; such consumers might turn to a producer, if any, which offers a more durable alternative.

Planned obsolescence was first developed in the 1920s and 1930s when mass production had opened every minute aspect of the production process to exacting analysis. END QUOTE

Today my Black and Decker Rotary Tool but the dust. Poor little gal she served me well for about 7 months. I did put a lot of miles on her but still was surprised she kicked the bucket.

I had this happen with my Dremel. With the Dremel I called the company and was able to get the inner replacement part that wears down with use. That saved me from throwing it away and I kept the dremel as a back up when I got the Black and Decker. So no sweat- I will just order the part from B and D right? Nope- they don't make them. The rep does tell me though that I can get a replacement since I have had it less than 2 years if I read her the serial number on it, To my surprise it was made in 2005 and must have been on the shelves for 2 years as I bought it in 2007. So, no replacement parts and no warranty coverage.

Basically I have an item that now must go in the landfill. Kind of sad...


BlossomingTree said...

Very informative post. How frustrating though to find out your rotary tool had been on the shelves all that time. Or was it purposely held back before being put on the shelves? Hmmm...

Dreaming In Colors said...

Can't you dismatle the Black and Decker and use the parts in your projects and then recycle the plastic and metal at a recycle center?

WalMart is famous for warehousing stock for months and years and then when you buy it the warrenty is dead before you use the item.

Keys and Memories said...

Great idea dreaming in color- I am notorious for not throwing my tools away so I will add it to the pile until I can get an idea :)