Monday, March 9, 2009
7 News Features: Fix It or Toss It
From shoes to toasters, purses to golf clubs, we've become a throwaway society. But with a tight economy, many people are trying to make things last longer. Seven's Craig Stevens is showing you whether we should Fix It or Toss It.
WSVN -- Pinching pennies is becoming a top priority, and for many that means fixing the old and out with the new.
Pete Soto: "Under the circumstances, with the economy as things are, no doubt it really helps me out."
Julio Delgado runs the Shoe Rescue.
He has been in business 25 years and says he's never been so busy.
Julio: "We see doctors, lawyers. We see a whole bunch of different people coming in now."
Julio says he can fix just about anything that's leather.
Julio Delgado: "We do all brand names. We do Coach, Kenneth Cole, Cole Han, you name it."
From torn tennis shoes and worn out heels.
Norma Peak: "It's much better to keep your old shoes and have them repaired because you know they are comfortable, and you enjoy wearing them."
To purses, suitcases, wallets and even belts, instead of buying new, in most cases, he can fix it for less than $50.
Julio Delgado: "If you get a purse that you paid $600, $700, what's $40?"
Try closing the door on big spending when it comes to your home appliances. Even air conditioners can often be repaired for much less than buying new.
Bruce: "If the repair is less than 50 percent, I would say 99 percent of the time, they do repair."
Bruce Hoekenga of Mister Appliance says if the repair cost goes up to 70 percent of the value, it's probably time to toss it and buy new. But not everything can be repaired.
Bruce: "Ice makers in refrigerators, we don't try and repair those. We replace them if they go bad."
Same for your garbage disposal.
Bruce: "Most of the time, if we go out on disposal, we tell them not to repair because the labor repairing a disposal is going to be too much."
Even in sports like golf, people are fixing rather than tossing.
Alex: "Customers are deciding to repair or kind of refinish their golf clubs, so that they can save a significant amount, you know, roughly between $300 or $400."
Repairs are way up at Pro Golf of Miami. Golfers are even replacing spikes on their shoes instead of shopping for brand new pairs.
In general, the repair experts we talked to say, as long as you are likely to get a year or more use out of your shoes or appliances by repairing them. It's going to be worth fixing, instead of tossing.