Reduce, reuse, recycle: These principles of conservation should certainly apply to our outdoor gear, as well. And for all of the money we spend on our gear, it doesn’t make financial (or environmental) sense to replace it each season.
That’s why we can’t get enough of these repair/return policies from some of our favorite brands and retailers. This group is leading the charge when it comes to making an impact. Instead of pumping out product and focusing on the bottom line, alternatively they’re focusing on sustainability, and building customer loyalty.
Sure, the draw of a good sale or deal is a powerful one, but even more powerful is knowing that by repairing (or even sending back your gear for someone else to wear) you’re ultimately eliminating waste.
Here are some of our favorite repair, return and warranty policies in the outdoor realm.
REI’s Return Policy guarantees 100-percent satisfaction—if you purchase a product that isn’t cutting it, you can return it for a replacement or a full refund within one year of purchase. One caveat: This does not apply to outdoor electronics, which must be returned within 90 days.
KEEN offers a one-year guarantee against manufacturing and material defects. Additionally, if you’re simply unhappy with your footwear, the brand lets customers return product within 30 days of purchase.
According to their website, Patagonia’s Worn Wear program “keeps your gear in action longer through repair and reuse, and recycles your garments when they’re beyond repair.” Customers can trade in their used Patagonia gear, cutting down on clothing waste, and receiving a credit toward a new or used purchase.
The North Face Renewed program aims to stop the cycle of throwing clothing out by closing the loop, offering to share, resell, repair and recycle clothing to stop them from being thrown out. The brand offers their refurbishment program, which takes clothing, “whether previously worn, returned, damaged or defective, it’s inspected, washed and tuned up for your next adventure.”
Osprey’s All Mighty guarantee says that Osprey will repair any defect or damage on the products, no matter when it was purchased. Whether that was decades ago or just last week, the brand says if they are unable to provide a functional repair to the product, they will replace it.
Outdoor Research calls their warranty program the Infinite Guarantee—it covers all defects in materials, workmanship, or product failures for the lifetime of the product. However, this does not apply to normal wear and tear, natural weathering, or to products that have been used outside of their intended use.
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