Products You Need to Buy Once
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50 Well-Made Products You'll Never Have to Buy Again

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Products You Need to Buy Once
yulkapopkova/istockphoto

Built To Last

Lifetime guarantees are increasingly rare in the retail world, but consumers bear at least some of the blame. A horde of online dumpster divers forced L.L. Bean to discontinue its lifetime guarantee after they raided secondhand shops for goods they returned for new gear. Customers sued, but the policy's reduction to one year of coverage remains in effect. A few years before that, a rapidly expanding REI made a similar change to its policy after years of abuse. It isn't that companies aren't standing behind their products: They're just getting a little tired of handing out goods to people who went on scavenger hunts for someone else's cast-off gear. Not every company has lost faith, however.

Zippo Lighter
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Zippo Lighter

Bradford, Pennsylvania-based Zippo has been making its trademark refillable, windproof lighters since 1932. Starting at $15, Zippo lighters come with a lifetime guarantee that ensures the company will fix your lighter every time it breaks down.

Le Creuset Cast Iron
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Le Creuset Cast Iron

As cookware goes, Le Creuset is not cheap. But it's covered by a warranty that remains in effect as long as the original consumer is alive. It won't cover abuse, burns, or gouges on a pot, but it will make sure that you never have to buy a new one because of a factory defect.

Cross Pens
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Cross Pens

Virtually indestructible and meant to last for generations, Cross pens can cost up to $320 and are given a full perpetual warranty guarantee. That means Cross will repair or replace any pen for any reason for the life of its owner. But ink refills, custom décor, fountain pen nibs, and other parts damaged from impact, unreasonable use, or obvious abuse are excluded.

Stanley Vacuum Bottle
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Stanley Vacuum Bottle

Stanley's been making these stainless steel containers since 1913, and they still keep liquid hot for 15 hours or cold for 60. They're also still covered by a lifetime warranty and will be repaired or replaced, whether costing $25 or $65.

JanSport Backpack
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JanSport Backpack

There's a reason why Jansport backpacks from the '80s and '90s are still on the backs of students today. The first is that, starting at $21, they're fairly affordable for families. Secondly, Jansport guarantees them for life, which means they'll fix it or replace it should anything go wrong.

Lodge Cast Iron
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Lodge Cast Iron

Cast iron is easy to use, easy to season, and easy to clean. Even if you let it go rusty, you can always scrub and reseason it. In fact, Lodge is so confident that it doesn't have a written warranty: It'll stand by its cast iron — from $35 grill pans to $90 woks — for life.

Leatherman MultiTool
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Leatherman MultiTool

There isn't just one Leatherman multitool. This Portland, Oregon, company has dozens to choose from, but backs each of its tools with a 25-year warranty that covers the primary owner, though not abuse, alteration, theft, loss, or unauthorized and/or unreasonable use.

Master Lock Classic Combination Lock
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Master Lock Classic Combination Lock

If a lock fails, probably the last thing you're going to be looking for is a new one — but if it fails without you losing all of the stuff it's protecting, and hasn't been cut or otherwise destroyed through abuse, Master Lock will send a replacement under its Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Buck Knife
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Buck Knife

The buck knife dates back to 1902, but the Buck Knife company has been around since 1945 and is in its fourth generation. Its "Forever Warranty" has helped retain customers by covering knives in case of defects or poor workmanship. If you used the knife (its gear starts below $20 but ranges up to $500) as a hammer, chisel, pry bar, or screwdriver, Buck will either repair it for a fee or get you a new one for 50 percent of the original price — at least, the first time.

Craftsman Hand Tools
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Craftsman Hand Tools

After selling exclusively at Sears for nearly 90 years, Craftsman is now part of the Black & Decker Stanley family. You've already seen Stanley on this list, so it shouldn't surprise you that many Craftsman hand tools — including screwdrivers, ratchets, wrenches, and hammers — get a full lifetime warranty. If it doesn't live up to your standards for any reason, take it back.

Land's End Clothing
Courtesy of landsend.com

Land's End Clothing

Land's End hasn't been owned by Sears for years, and it shows. Its generous return policy allows customers to send back an item for any reason if they aren't satisfied. But the clock is ticking: You'll get a full refund if you return within 90 days, but only get store credit or an exchange if you return later.

All-Clad Cookware
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All-Clad Cookware

Cookware is going to take a beating even if you treat it right. All-Clad knows this, which is why it guarantees its cookware against defects for life. Granted, the warranty won't help if you scratch up a nonstick surface with a metal utensil or mar the outside with a scouring pad, but everything from a $57 fry pan to $1,500 set of copper pots is guaranteed to survive until you've cooked it into oblivion.

Shinola Watches
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Shinola Watches

Detroit-based Shinola wants to make it clear that its products, like the Detroit renaissance, are here to stay. Though it won't pay for shipping, it will repair or replace a watch at any time for as long as you own it. The battery, strap, and buckle aren't included, and Shinola advises sending in its $400 to $3,000 watches for maintenance every two to three years anyway.

Darn Tough Socks
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Darn Tough Socks

These socks made by Darn Tough in Vermont are guaranteed for life. Should anything take these thick, soft Merino wool socks out of action, they're covered and shockingly easy to return and replace. At $10 a sock or more, it's an investment, but it's also peace of mind.

Wusthof Knives
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Wusthof Knives

This iconic German knife maker doesn't want to have its reputation sullied by bad knives, which is why it will cover defects in material and craftsmanship throughout the life of the knife. If you want that lifetime warranty to stay in effect, But don't use a knife to pry open a container or cut frozen food.

DeWalt Tools
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DeWalt Tools

We could make a list of tool manufacturers alone that would fit the "for life" bill, but DeWalt is a bit different. For one, it guarantees that its carbide and masonry bits won't break or they'll replace them free of charge. Its multi-tiered warranty also covers mechanics' tools, which they will replace at any point without question. Its hand tools get a limited lifetime warranty that replaces or repairs defective items.

Escali Scales
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LupinePet Dog Collar
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LupinePet Dog Collar

A collar generally has a lot of staying power, but not if a dog chews it to ribbons. LupinePet dog collars start at $7 and include a lifetime guarantee. It won't cover you if your dog outgrows a collar, loses it, or simply makes it smell or look funky, but a policy that covers chewing can mean big savings for a household that's trying to train a dog.

Liberty Tabletop Flatware
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Liberty Tabletop Flatware

The "Made in the USA" label will get you only so far with consumers. Liberty Tabletop, whose stainless steel flatware sets start at $70 for four three-piece place settings, is made here, but also comes with a 25-year warranty that covers factory defects and normal use. Is that a "lifetime" guarantee? It depends on how old you are and how lucky you feel.

Briggs & Riley Luggage
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Briggs & Riley Luggage

Luggage is going to get banged up just by nature. But Briggs & Riley will always repair wear or damage under its lifetime guarantee.Granted, goods start at $55 for toiletry kits and $100 for small bags — and you have to pay for shipping on returns — but the company will also send a free repair kit.

Filson Goods
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Filson Goods

Since 1897, the Filson brand of bags, apparel, work gear, outdoor gear, and accessories has been based around being rugged enough to tame the Gold Rush and the western elements. That's given it great confidence in its products, to the point that its guarantee covers repair or replacement of every product it sells for the life of the product should defects, poor worksmanship, or even weak materials lead to its demise.

Davek Umbrella
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Davek Umbrella

Davek umbrellas range from simple compact totes ($40) to a $135 umbrella with a chip in the handle that can be tracked by phone within 30 feet and sends an alert with coordinates if it goes beyond that point. If a Davek breaks, the company will send a new one for free (minus shipping) and, should it go lost beyond your ability to get it back, Davek will sell you a new one for up to half the original price.

Duluth Trading Products
Courtesy of duluthtrading.com
Kobalt Hand Tools
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Kobalt Hand Tools

This is Lowe's longtime house brand, and many of its hand tools, garden tools, garage organization tools and other non-power tools get the brand's Lifetime Hassle-Free Guarantee. Basically, if you have a problem with the tool, just take it back to the store for a free replacement. No questions asked.

Timbuk2
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Timbuk2

Timbuk2 bags made their way from bicycle messengers to boardrooms as their utility and durability caught the attention of an increasingly casual workforce. A lifetime warranty covers defects in materials or workmanship; abuse, normal wear and tear, accidental damage, and cosmetic damages such as scratches and stains aren't covered. It's a bike bag: It's supposed to look a bit mean.

Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Pillow
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Sea to Summit Aeros Premium Pillow

Starting at about $30, these inflatable travel pillows are built for the long haul. They're also protected throughout your travels by a lifetime warranty against defects and shabby workmanship. While you have to have your proof of purchase, Sea to Summit will repair or replace any pillow you haven't simply worn out.

Pactimo Alpine Thermal Jersey
Courtesy of pactimo.com

Pactimo Alpine Thermal Jersey

Cyclists are hard on their gear, and $140 cold-weather jerseys are bound to see some tough conditions. But should one fail due to a manufacturing or material defect, Pactimo will replace or repair it for no charge for the life of the jersey.

Cariloha Bamboo Products
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Fortified Bicycles
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Fortified Bicycles

Fortified specializes in anti-theft bicycles and gear, so everything from $749 bikes down to $69 lock-on light sets fall under the company guarantee. If you lock up your bike and it or its secured accessories are stolen, Fortified will ship you a new one for the cost of shipping and handling.

Dewit Garden Tools
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Dewit Garden Tools

Made in The Netherlands, Dewit Garden Tools come with a lifetime guarantee. If there's an issue with defects or workmanship, it'll provide a free replacement to the original buyer with a receipt. Be forewarned: Even small tools such as a hand trowel start at $20.

Mini Bili Children's Clothes
Courtesy of houseofbilimoria.com

Mini Bili Children's Clothes

It's a lifetime guarantee, and the products are guaranteed against defects and poor workmanship for life, but they're also children's clothes — which means they're designed for almost immediate obsolescence. Buy one of these pieces from the House of Billmoria, though, and you can return it for a 30 percent discount on new clothing when your child outgrows it.

Fisher Bullet Space Pen
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Fisher Bullet Space Pen

Paul Fisher made the first pen to work in zero gravity, and it went up to space on the initial Apollo mission in 1968. That pen is in the Museum of Modern Art today, but the Bullet and the AG-7 replica are not only available, but guaranteed for life.

Patagonia Clothing
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Patagonia Clothing

Patagonia has made its reputation through clothes that live up to its namesake, a South American region known for its rugged near-Antarctic climate. It doesn't matter if you're buying a pair of $629 waders or a $7 headband: Patagonia's "Ironclad Guarantee" states that "If you are not satisfied with one of our products at the time you receive it, or if one of our products does not perform to your satisfaction, return it to the store you bought it from or to Patagonia for a repair, replacement, or refund." Even wear-and-tear will be repaired for a small fee.

Camelbak Hydration Paks
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Camelbak Hydration Paks

Those backpacks of water that you take on bike trips, hikes, and to certain outdoor concerts should be the only ones you'll ever own. Camelbak's "Got Your Bak Lifetime Guarantee" won't cover the wear and tear you put on your bag, but it will protect it from manufacturers' defects and shoddy workmanship.

Solo Stove Campfire Stove
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Solo Stove Campfire Stove

Solo Stove produces a number of high-efficiency portable camp stoves and fire pits ranging between $35 and $105. Users who aren't 100 percent satisfied with a purchase for any reason can get a free pre-paid return label for any order shipped within the lower 48 states. Send it back within 30 days for a full refund complete with shipping costs. Return it later, and you'll get store credit and a bill for shipping.

Goughnuts Dog Toys
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Goughnuts Dog Toys

Dog toys are made to be chewed and, under normal circumstances, aren't the kind of thing expected to last forever. But Goughnuts has built its brand around safe, chewable dog toys and has implanted a red "Chew Toy Safety Indicator" in each to let you know when they become a hazard for your dog. They'll provide a free replacement, but you're expected to kick in an extra $7.20 for shipping.

SunGod Classics2 Sunglasses
Courtesy of us.sungod.co

SunGod Classics2 Sunglasses

SunGod sunglasses are supposed to stand up to rigorous athletic tests. As a result, the company offers a lifetime guarantee that will repair these typically $100 items free of charge if they break. But "break" does not cover lens scratches, wear and tear, loss or theft, alteration, misuse or abuse.

United By Blue Bags and Jackets
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United By Blue Bags and Jackets

Founded in 2010 and based in Philadelphia, this company removes a pound of trash from oceans and other waterways for every item sold. In the interest of not creating more waste, it has customers register its bags and jackets and repairs anything short of general wear and tear. If there's a flaw, it'll fix it.

Benchmade Utility Knife
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Benchmade Utility Knife

This Oregon City, Oregon, knife maker stands by its products, which range between $100 and $430, and won't let a knife die easily. Not only will it replace or repair it for free if it is defective, but cleaning, oiling, sharpening, and adjusting services are part of that warranty.

Dakine Packs And Bags
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Dakine Packs And Bags

Outdoor company Dakine won't cover every product it makes with a lifetime warranty, but it will repair or replace packs and bags ($25 to $475) found to be defective within the scope of normal and appropriate use within their lifespan.

Eddie Bauer Gear
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Eddie Bauer Gear

Every item Eddie Bauer sells comes with a lifetime warranty. If you are unhappy with a product for any reason, just return it for an exchange or refund.

Feetures Socks
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Feetures Socks

The lifetime sock guarantee is really catching on. Once an item deemed disposable, socks are getting some extensive, liberal warranty protection. Feetures, for instance, will let you trade in old socks ($13 to $18 for pairs) for new ones at any time for any reason if you aren't satisfied.

Fiskars
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Fiskars

Fiskars believes it makes some of the most durable tools and cutting implements around. But if a Fiskars product proves defective at any time during its life (as one of our sets of loppers did), Fiskars will repair or replace it (as it did with ours) at no cost under its lifetime warranty.

Hydro Flask
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Hydro Flask

You only have 30 days to send back a Hydro Flask if you feel it isn't up to snuff. But if it actually breaks down on you and it isn't your fault, the lifetime warranty will provide repair or replacement at any time during the life of the product, with costs of most items between $20 and $40.

North Face Gear
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North Face Gear

The North Face likes to brag about how some of its 1973 Superlight sleeping bags are still in circulation, which makes having a lifetime warranty against manufacturing defects all the more important. Damage caused by accident, improper care, negligence, normal wear and tear, or the natural breakdown of colors and materials over extended time and use aren't covered. Its footwear isn't either.

Orvis Jackets
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Orvis Jackets

Orvis says its product guarantees date back to 1856, which makes this iconic outdoor company one of the first (and few) to stand by a 100 percent guarantee. If you don't like a product or have an issue with it, return it at any time for a replacement or a refund. It isn't 100 percent free — you're on the hook for refund shipping — but it isn't laden with a bunch of caveats, either.

Outdoor Research
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Outdoor Research

This is some high-end outdoor gear, and Outdoor Research's Infinite Warranty has to do some heavy lifting. While it will repair or replace items with defects or shoddy worksmanship, it draws the line at swapping out expensive gear after normal wear and tear, mishandling, accidents, defacement, or sale from non-authorized dealers.

Rainbow Sandals
Courtesy of rainbowsandals.com

Rainbow Sandals

There isn't a greater vote of confidence from a sandal maker than offering a guarantee that covers their stuff until you wear a hole through the sole. That's what Rainbow Sandals considers the end of your sandal's lifetime, and it will repair or replace defects up to that point. Including boots, the company's product line costs between $28 and $100.

Xicar Cigar Accessories
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Xicar Cigar Accessories

Cigar cutters and lighters are status pieces, and Xicar wants you spending more time flaunting them than fixing them. If your product fails to live up to expectations, just send it back and Xicar will repair it or replace it under warranty.

Peugeot Salt And Pepper Mills
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Peugeot Salt And Pepper Mills

This is one "lifetime" warranty for which it pays to read the fine print. Yes, the mechanism of this French company's salt and pepper mills are guaranteed for life. But the bodies are only guaranteed two years from the date of purchase for electric versions and five years for manual mills. Considering their sets start at about $30 apiece, and can cost as much as $210, that difference in coverage can get pricey.