Kitchen appliances have become so high tech, that manufacturers upgrade them every couple of years. That's great, until you need a part for that fridge or oven, and find that it is no longer made.
Jim Brett is frustrated. He needs a new cartridge for his under the sink reverse osmosis water filter.
But, he says "you just can't get them anymore!"
Brett paid more than $200 for the filtration system just one year ago, at his local Lowe's store. But, when he went back for replacement cartridges, he was stunned.
"They no longer had that system available, at all," he said.
At first, Brett thought his local Lowe's had just run out of the replacement filters. No big deal.
But then he discovered he could not find them anywhere. Sure enough, we checked and found the filter cartridges unavailable on either Lowe's or Culligan's websites.
Amazon appears to have some, though it turns out they have a two month wait.
"It just seemed like an organization like that, that they would have a little bit of compassion, since it has not even been a year since it has been installed," Brett said.
Many Appliances Parts Hard to Find
But, with today's high tech appliances updated as frequently as new cars, many become obsolete after just a few years.
Electronic panels are frequently changed, and the older one can become hard to find.
Two years ago, Christina Brown showed me her broken oven, with a control panel that was no longer made.
"It's only 6 years old," the frustrated homeowner told us. "I don't think it should be an antique."
So, what if this happens to you?
One solution: search online for "discontinued appliance parts" and look for supply houses that may be able to ship you the part.
Or get on eBay and search for parts to what are now known as "disposable" appliances.
Just beware that many parts on eBay are used, so be sure to get a guarantee with it.
We are happy to report that after we got involved, Lowe's offered to replace Brett's entire system with a new model free of charge.
Culligan, meantime, tells us if customers call their local "Culligan man", they can find discontinued filters for many of its older systems.
So don't give up, so you don't waste your money.
“Don't Waste Your Money” is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. (“Scripps”). John Matarese reports on deals and scams so you Don't Waste Your Money. "Like" his page on Facebook and follow him on Twitter @JohnMatarese.
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