Monday, September 17, 2007

My Maui Jim Sunglass Repair Experience

If you own a pair of Maui Jim sunglasses, you may or may not be aware that they have a pretty kick-ass repair policy. What was your experience like? Tell the world about yours in the comments below.

My repair experience has been a positive one. So far, I've broken them three four times and only had to pay serious money for repairs once. The first two times, I must have still been under warranty and there were literally no questions asked; I just sent them in along with $8.95 shipping (as of 5/3/2013 it's now $10.00, but who cares), and they sent them back to me ASAP. The first time they repaired the broken piece, and the second time they replaced the entire glasses for free--bridge, temples, lenses... everything. AND they gave me a new case for them. All free of charge.

The third time, however, I received a call from Maui Jim and was informed that I was no longer under warranty since I bought them back in 2003. The bridge was bent beyond repair, so that would need replacement. $49.50. My lenses had pits and scratches in them and I could either do nothing, or they'd give me new lenses for half price. The temples were bent, too, but I learned those are always replaced free of charge -- "it's just something we do for the customer" to foster good relations, the service rep said. I think it's a great policy.

All together, it cost $79.50 to rebuild them into a brand new pair of $250 glasses.

Here's what I know about how they operate:
  1. If you break them and you're under warranty, send them in. My experience was that they repaired everything with no questions asked.
  2. If you're out of warranty, the bridge will cost you $49.50 as of this writing (9/17/07). Lenses sound like they are $60, as I was given half off and paid $30 for them.
  3. Temples are always replaced free of charge if they are damaged
  4. If you send them to Maui Jim without a case (i.e., you lost or damaged yours) it's possible they might send them back to you in a brand new case. UPDATE 4/18/13: I've later come to find out that not always is this the case. (No pun intended!)
  5. Fast turnaround time. Sent them out on 9/7/07, got a call from Repair Dept on 9/17/07 (10 days later) indicating my glasses were received, repair work would be done right away, and glasses shipped out tomorrow 9/18/07, taking about 3-5 business days to arrive. Total repair/transit time: about 2 weeks.
  6. Maui Jim Repair Department Caller ID was 309-691-3700.
  7. Much cheaper than paying retail of $249 for a new pair
  8. Repairing Prescription Sunglasses: Rx lenses that are damaged or need replacement should be returned to their place of purchase. Rx lenses cannot be replaced or remade through Maui Jim directly. However, if your prescription sunglass frame needs repair, you can visit their Repair Department's web page and, follow the instructions, and clearly mark "RX REPAIR" on the outside of the container.
EDIT 07/08/08: If purchased at Sunglass Hut, they offer a kick-ass additional "warranty," if you will. For the first six months, if you absolutely destroy your sunglasses beyond repair (run them over with your car, drop them down a garbage disposal, etc.), they'll give you a significant discount on a replacement pair, so long as you bring in the fragments of whatever's left of the old pair.

EDIT 05/28/09: Here's a link to their repair department.

UPDATE: 4/18/13: Damn! Broke them again! This time the temple snapped while I was taking them off (with both hands)... it seems that my particular style is prone to this kind of thing--you see, over time the temples develop small stress fractures and, as one might expect, they get worse the more you put the glasses on and take them off. Sent them in for repair again, so we'll see what the experience is *this* time! Hopefully they're just as good as I claimed back in 2007 when I wrote this post.

UPDATE 5/3/13: Got them back (no thanks to the Post Office ... technically they arrived on 4/27 but the Post Office held the package instead of re-delivering after they missed be because the package required a signature confirmation. Once again, Maui Jim is furthering my love for this company. My lenses had seen better days and while it was my temple that snapped, I joked around in my letter to them and asked if they had any spare lenses just lying around they were looking to get rid of, I'd love to be the one they donate them to. They did! And so, they continue to earn repeat business and referrals and free advertising from me as a Maui Jim advocate/evangelist. I'm so happy that Maui Jim hasn't lost sight of how to deliver WOW.

Monday, September 10, 2007

iPhone, therefore iAm

So I just got my new iPhone on Saturday September 8th. Man, what a joy this thing is to use. I will admit that there are a few shortcomings that have been covered by other sites. The first I encountered was that seemingly almost any iPhone case or cover that you buy is not dockable. (UPDATE: InvisibleShield is dockable, I bought one, and it's worth every penny.) Few are, and these few typically have the bottom-left and bottom-right corners chisled out of the case's design to allow dockability. Of course, you could get a screen cover to protect the glass screen, but after PC World's torture test, I'm not really sure if it's necessary.

A point to note: iPhone does not come with a native IM application. However, as of August 15th, is your one-stop shop to temporarily solve this mess until native apps arrive on the scene from either Apple itself, or other third-party developers and a little hackery. With Meebo, you use Safari to browse to the main page. Meebo detects iPhone as the browsing device, and delivers a specially coded version of its site that looks and feels like a native iPhone app. Pretty cool.

The only downside to this is that if you move away from that one "dynamic web page" of sorts (i.e., open a new browser window or switch to another application within iPhone), you have no idea whether or not you've received any IMs--although it appears you remain logged into the messaging client as long as you have an internet connection.