Shopping can feel like a treadmill that no one can climb off. Didn’t we just buy a pallet of paper towels at the warehouse store last week? How does one cocker spaniel eat enough for an entire pack of wolves?
Of course, groceries and perishables need to be replaced often. However, pricier items require more-judicious shopping. Buying more paper towels won’t break the bank, but no one wants to shell out for new cookware every year.
Here’s a look at several items that are built to last, many of which have a lifetime guarantee or warranty.
Note: Although we chose products with some of the best warranties and guarantees, always read the fine print before handing over your hard-earned cash. Some warranties have restrictions.
1. Le Creuset cookware
Grandma used Le Creuset cookware, and you can follow in her footsteps in the kitchen. The colorful enameled cast-iron dishes require a steep outlay, but wedding showers and outlet stores can help curb that cost.
The company’s famous limited lifetime warranty says it will replace defective cookware free of charge.
2. JanSport backpacks
Who uses backpacks most? The same two groups of people who don’t take it easy on backpacks — school kids and campers.
Find a classic JanSport backpack, and your pack of choice might take your kid from kindergarten through college, or haul your camp gear from Alaska to the Everglades. If it ever breaks down, JanSport’s lifetime warranty says the company will fix or replace it.
3. KitchenAid mixers
KitchenAid mixers remain among the creme de la creme of wedding registry gifts. Brides and grooms add them to the roster hoping an uncle or aunt with a fat wallet will feel generous.
KitchenAid stand mixers come with a one-year warranty. But from experience, we can say these mixers last well beyond that. You may not have to buy a new one ever — which, sadly, makes it tough to justify splurging when that new, perfect-for-your-kitchen color comes out.
4. The North Face gear
Most of us aren’t facing a perilous mountain climb. But when we do want to climb or hike or otherwise commune with the great outdoors, we want gear — from duffel bags to tents — that gets us through.
The North Face guarantees its products are free of manufacturing defects for the expected life of the product — not your lifetime. The company notes that some of its sleeping bags are over 45 years old and going strong.
Note that footwear has only a limited one-year warranty. Sometimes shoe win, sometimes shoe lose.
5. Kryptonite bike locks
Your bicycle is no good to you if it gets stolen. Kryptonite bike locks were named for the one thing that can stop Superman in his tracks — just in case the Man of Steel turns to the dark side and goes on a Schwinn-stealing spree.
We’re not sure Kryptonite bike locks would actually stop a superhero, but the company does offer a lifetime warranty and optional anti-theft protection. You must register for this protection; it’s not automatic.
6. Briggs & Riley luggage
Briggs & Riley luggage isn’t cheap, but once you buy one of these bags, the company’s lifetime repair guarantee even covers damage caused by an airline. You have to pay to ship the company the bag you want fixed, but it will pay to send it back to you.
7. Zippo lighters
Zippo lighters have lit up American history and pop culture since the company’s founding in 1932. They’re referenced in song lyrics and movies, and even “Mystery Science Theater 3000” episodes.
The company promises that its Windproof lighter will work, or they’ll fix it for free — even if it’s 50 years old.
8. LupinePet collars
Doggone it, Rex chewed up his leash again and Fluffy shredded her collar into a feather boa!
9. Big Green Egg grill
Read the details carefully, though, as it explains what is and isn’t covered. Materials and workmanship on all ceramic cookers are covered for as long as the original owner owns the grill. So, get cooking!
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