MAKE YOUR MONEY GO FURTHER
Repeatedly purchasing commonly used items can be a frustrating waste of money and time. Sometimes it's worth paying more for a high-quality product with a reputation for durability, and a warranty that spans years or a lifetime. Here are 25 items that are built to last.
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A trusty backpack always comes in handy, and it pays to find one with a classic design that can withstand daily abuse. Jansport sells its backpacks (starting at $18) with a lifetime warranty. The company will repair or replace a pack that breaks down, or issue a refund.
LE CREUSET COOKWARE
Le Creuset sells lifetime-guaranteed cast-iron cookware, including its iconic Dutch ovens (prices vary by size and color). For a less expensive option, look to Lodge enameled cookware, which has a similar lifetime warranty. Both companies cover defects in material and workmanship with normal household use and repair or replace defective products free of charge for the lifetime of the original owner.
SADDLEBACK LEATHER BELT
Low-quality belts can wear out and crack, but Saddleback Leather Co.'s Four Stitch Belt ($95) comes with a 100-year warranty. The belt is made from full-grain leather and marine-grade thread, and comes in four colors.
DR. MARTENS BOOTS
As the name suggests, leather boots ($180) and shoes ($155) from Dr. Martens' For Life collection are guaranteed for life. Unlike many warranties, this guarantee covers not only materials and workmanship. The company will repair or replace a worn out product.
RÖSLE CAN OPENER
Can openers can be picked up for cheap at grocery stores and drugstores, but poorly made ones rust and dull easily. German kitchen-products maker Rösle sells can openers (starting at $42) that are guaranteed for life.
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L.L. BEAN APPAREL
L.L. Bean sells all manner of clothing for men, women, and kids, from shorts and T-shirts to winter coats and blue jeans, all with a lifetime satisfaction guarantee. The store is known for letting customers decide for themselves whether they're "unsatisfied" at any point and furnishing replacements with no questions asked.
PRATICO KITCHEN CUTTING BOARD
Low-quality cutting boards often don't make the grade, but Pratico Kitchen's bamboo cutting board ($23 on Amazon) has a "no-hassle" warranty that guarantees it will last for life, or the company will replace it. What's more, it doubles as a serving tray.
It's easy to break or wear out glass dishware, but it's possible to find dishes that are designed to last. Classic white Corelle dishware starts at $25 for a 12-piece set (four three-piece place settings). The break- and chip-resistant dishes are dishwasher, refrigerator, microwave, and pre-heated oven safe and come with a three-year warranty.
LUPINE DOG COLLAR
A long-lasting dog collar can save a lot of cash in the long run, especially for pups that like to use collars as chew toys. Dog collars from Lupine (starting at $6) feature a lifetime guarantee that applies even if the dog chews them up. They come in a variety of colors.
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Liberty Tabletop's 18/10 stainless flatware (starting at $50 for four three-piece place settings) has the makings of a long-lasting product. The flatware comes with a 25-year warranty against manufacturing defects and is made in the United States.
Sturdier than their plastic or wire counterparts, solid wood clothes hangers are a closet staple built for a lifetime of use. Ikea offers an eight-pack in a choice of black, white, or natural for $5.
Disposable lighters are frequent purchase that can be replaced with a refillable Zippo lighter. The windproof lighters (starting at $15) come with a lifetime guarantee: Consumers can send back a Zippo that no longer works and the company will fix it for free.
Leatherman's Wingman multitool ($40) in timeless stainless steel features 14 tools and a blade designed to open with one hand. This infinitely useful tool comes with a 25-year warranty: If it breaks, the company will repair or replace it, no questions asked.
PEUGEOT SALT AND PEPPER MILLS
A quality set of salt and pepper grinders can have cooks seasoning up a storm for years to come. The grinding mechanisms in all of Peugeot's highly regarded mills (starting at $32 on Amazon) come with a lifetime warranty.
Escali's clear glass bathroom scale ($40) has a lifetime warranty that covers defects in material and workmanship. The scale is designed with an easy-to-read digital display and turns off automatically to preserve the battery.
Fry pans get plenty of use and take a lot of abuse, so it pays to avoid nonstick coatings that could flake off and spend a bit more for quality cookware. All-Clad's stainless tri-ply 12-inch skillet with lid ($107 on Amazon) is dishwasher-safe and comes with a limited lifetime warranty. A more affordable option is cast iron, which requires maintenance, but the Lodge 12-inch skillet ($37) comes preseasoned and ready to use. Both are American-made.
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DARN TOUGH SOCKS
For socks that can really go the distance, try Darn Tough's lifetime-guaranteed socks for men, women, and kids (starting at $15). A variety of colors and patterns for work and play are all made in the United States and guaranteed for life. They can be returned for a replacement or full refund at any time.
BRIGGS & RILEY SUITCASE
Even well-made luggage rips or loses a zipper or wheel eventually, but Briggs & Riley suitcases (starting at $300) come with a lifetime repair guarantee. The company fixes luggage for free, even if an airline caused the damage. The customer is responsible for shipping, but the company pays for return shipping and has authorized repair centers around the world, as well as free DIY repair kits.
Starting at $26, Stanley sells lifetime-guaranteed vacuum-sealed thermoses. Made of stainless steel, these durable containers keep liquid hot for 15 hours and cold liquids iced for 60 hours.
KOBALT TOOL SET
Renters and homeowners alike benefit from having a basic tool set handy for quick fixes around the home. The 22-piece Kobalt household tool set ($50 at Lowe's) comes in a tool bag and features a hammer, wrench, scissors, tape measure, saw, screwdriver, knife, and three pliers. Under the brand's lifetime hassle-free guarantee, the tools can be returned for a free replacement, no questions asked.
TWEEZERMAN BEAUTY TOOLS
Tweezerman offers free sharpening for its tweezers, scissors, and nail clippers (starting at $7). If the implements are damaged from normal use or can't be sharpened, the company will replace them for free.
Although they cost more than corner-store umbrellas, Davek umbrellas (starting at $49) feature an unconditional lifetime guarantee. Just be sure to buy through an authorized dealer and register the product online. And, of course, there's no free replacement if you accidently leave it somewhere.
NALGENE WATER BOTTLE
Nalgene water bottles (starting at less than $10) are famously durable. Most are made from high-density polyethylene or Tritan, a BPA-free, recyclable plastic, and feature a leak-proof guarantee.
Wooden toys for kids can be safer and more durable than plastic playthings. Plan Toys sells a variety of toys designed for newborns, toddlers, and preschoolers made from rubberwood (starting at $2.50 on Amazon).