Without doubt, reliability is the one feature you need to have on every piece of equipment in your facility. If your line is shut down and you’re paying through the nose for repairs, it doesn’t matter if your your new piece of equipment is the greatest invention ever. And nothing tells you a product is dependable and well-made like a strong warranty.
But how can you be sure you’re getting a great warranty and therefore a great product? Here are some questions to consider:
IS IT SIMPLE?
Beware multi-page monstrosities! You know to read the fine print, but all other things being equal, the more clauses a warranty has and the more complex the language, the more outs the manufacturer is putting in. No one needs three pages to say “If it breaks, we’ll fix it.”
IS IT TOO SIMPLE?
There’s nothing wrong with a warranty that boils down to something like “1 year on everything.” But some components are supposed to last longer than and/or are more important than others, so give some thought to whether the warranty should be multi-tiered. For example, we warranty our entire product for two years, but warranty all ultrasonic generator components for five years and our Vibra-bar® transducers for ten years.
WHEN DOES THE WARRANTY PERIOD BEGIN?
Watch out for warranties that guarantee the product from some point well before you can use it, such as from the date of manufacture. For example, say a company sells you an off-the-shelf unit that is warrantied from the date of manufacture. In that case, your coverage began before the off-the-shelf unit reached the shelf, and possibly months or years before you even ordered it! Look for warranties that begin when the product is shipped or delivered.
DOES IT COVER THIRD PARTY COMPONENTS?
Your warranty should definitely include a clause which mentions coverage for parts of the unit that were provided to the manufacturer. This clause will usually take the form of a guarantee to transfer the third parties’ warranties, but the important thing is that it’s in there. If it isn’t, you could find large portions of your machine—including vital components like transducers and generators—are not covered.
WHAT REMEDIES ARE AVAILABLE?
Every manufacturer sets parameters on what they’ll do to remedy a problem; it’s a perfectly logical practice to protect them from unreasonable demands and costs. But be on the lookout for remedy clauses that don’t necessarily require the manufacturer to repair or replace the part and get you back on track.
ARE THE EXCLUSIONS REASONABLE?
Virtually every warranty has some logical exclusions, but look this clause over carefully. If a manufacturer is saying they won’t pay in an instance that is either somewhat likely and/or completely in their purview—such as the failure of a transducer they manufactured—it indicates they’re not certain about their product’s dependability.
ANY OTHER QUESTION YOU WANT TO ASK!
We’ve all heard the old saw, “the only stupid question is the one you didn’t ask.” If you’re unclear on anything in a warranty, ask away. This will not only give you the information you need to make a good decision, it will show you what kind of customer care you can expect from the manufacturer. Are they forthcoming or cagey?
What is our warranty like, you ask? We were already describing it as “industry-leading” for years before we decided to lengthen it. As mentioned above, our world class 10-5-2 warranty backs our Vibra-bar® transducers for ten years, our ultrasonic generators for five years and all other components for two years.
You can be certain we’ll deliver a reliable product and stand behind it. If you want to learn more about how some of our customers used these highly reliable machines to reduce costs and deliver a cleaner product, click here to learn about Ushers Machine and Tool or download a copy of our case study, Ultrasonics to the Rescue, showing the results seen by Componex.