So about 2 years ago, I purchased a chair mat (one of those plastic guys with tons of poking thingies). After I started using it for awhile, I noticed that my wheels were starting to dig into the chair mat and soon after that it began to crack. I’ve patched it with packaging tape, hoping to stop the crack from spreading, but new cracks formed. I thought, oh well, that’s part of its life.
However, when I was at Costco this past weekend, since I had an hour and 40 minutes to spare (my tires were being rotated and rebalanced), I walked every aisle and saw my chair mat. Apparently, these chair mats have a lifetime warranty and they’re NOT suppose to crack under normal usage on top of low/medium carpet. I’m pretty sure my carpet is medium, though I could be wrong. I guess you can consider sitting on a chair for long durations of time to be abuse and outside “normal usage”. So I jot down their website in my head (www.esrchairmats.com) and decided to check them out when I got home.
Like most things I jot down in my head, I tend to forget. It was only after typing up the previous CFL blog entry and talking about Costco which jolted my memory. I visited their homepage which states:
E S Robbins chair mats feature many patented innovations that make our floor chair mat products a world leader in quality standards. Our chairmats are protected by our No Crack guarantee and are designed for both hardwood and carpet applications. We are the industry leader in custom chairmat manufacturing.
Their Warranty Statement states:
E S Robbins Corporation Office Products provides a lifetime warranty on all the company’s chairmat products.* E S Robbins Corporation guarantees its AnchorBar®, Anchormat®, Crystal Edge®, Trans-Stat®, and No Crack® chairmats to be free from any defects in material and workmanship at the time of sale to original purchaser, and will not crack, chip, break or shatter under normal usage. The warranty only applies to the original purchaser. Should any product during the warranty period, in E. S. Robbins Corporation’s sole opinion, prove to be defective in material and/or workmanship under normal usage, E. S. Robbins Corporation will, at its option, replace the product at no charge (except as otherwise stated herein) provided that the product has not been subjected to abuse, misuse, misapplication, neglect, accident, disaster, alteration or modification.
So far so good…
I go to their Warranty Claim Form and notice 2 ridiculous things.
First, they’re asking for the UPC code, which is located on the sticker stuck to the chair mat when you first purchased it. Like most people, I discard that sticker probably the day I purchased it, which means I no longer have the UPC code. I guess I could jot down the numbers the next time I go back to Costco.
Second, A shipping and handling fee of $20.00 will be charged for all warranty replacements. What the !@#*? The chair mat only costs $18.xx at Costco. Why would I pay you $20 to mail it to me? I guess one smart way to offer lifetime warranty is by charging a ridiculous shipping/handling fee so that the warranty claim would never be exercised.
I could probably return this to Costco with no questions asked and get a full refund. I’m still contemplating on doing that. Next to these plastic chair mats, they had these nice wooden ones for $90, which look a lot more sturdier than this plastic chair mat. However $90 vs $20 is quite a big jump, though these stupid pot holes the chair has been digging into the plastic chair mats are starting to annoy me. Once the wheels go into a pot hole, it takes significant effort to push them back out.