However, along with the blessing of a backyard comes the responsibility of one. To make our lives easier, my husband installed a battery-operated timer to water our small lawn and garden. In the six years that we've lived here, we've gone through two batter-operated timers. Our most recent one cost us $25, and it just stopped working recently. Not good considering how HOT it has been here in recent weeks. So, off I went to the hardware store to get a new one.
Since we don't have a big store like Home Depot, we usually shop at our local Ace Hardware. Yes, they are a tad more expensive. But, I have found that they live up to their name -- "The Helpful Place". They really do have wonderful customer service...and they do have an Ace Guarantee that they stand by. All I had to do was bring in the Ace brand water timer that failed and they exchanged it for a new one for free. I didn't need a receipt or anything and the woman at the store was really wonderful about it. No hassle. It was just a simple exchange.
Not only does Ace stick by their guarantee, but I've discovered a similar response with Jansport backpacks. I had a wonderful backpack from the college days that was in great shape except for the zipper. The thing just gave out. I held onto it because I remembered that it had a lifetime warranty. Since I paid $40-50, I wanted to see if they would stand by their guarantee. Sure enough, they did. I just had to wash it and mail it to them with a description of the problem. A few weeks later, they returned it to me as good as new. I had to pay to ship it to them (about $5) but that was much cheaper than buying a new one.
It really can pay to ask companies to stick by their guarantees. Don't be afraid to ask. The worst thing that they can do is say "No." And more often than not, they'll say "Yes".