Why the Planet Needs You to Repair Your Broken Stuff

Consumers fight back against corporate planned obsolescence.

County Sustainability Group

Overproduction and planned obsolescence are the new normal. But fixing your broken things is a way to resist—and build community.


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4 thoughts on “Why the Planet Needs You to Repair Your Broken Stuff

  1. Serendipity or what? I spent my entire day, well almost, fixing “stuff” including an articulating hedge trimmer head by Stihl that was probably “still” on warranty but the hassle to get a warranty fix would have cost more than drilling a new hole to install a defective retainer bolt on the shaft. Some things can be fixed, many simply cannot – either it cost more to fix than to replace or no parts available. This is typically true of domestic appliances – they are made to fail, or as you say, planned obsolescence. One brand of power equipment to beware now: Husqvarna. Plummeted from top of the line to cheap crap.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Stuart,
    Are you reading my mind again? I spend my life cooking, cleaning, fixing things, and inventing things out of my array of tools and scraps. I have several pairs of shoes whose soles keep coming unglued from the tops. I’ve learned a lot about various glues and have found that Gorilla glue works well enough, but I have to keep acetone handy to remove the residue from fingers. The big trick in gluing a shoe is clamping it just right. I stuff the toe with toweling and use large rubber bands (from collard greens) to hold the sole and main part together. I hate shopping, especially for shoes, but I wear them out quickly, so have gotten the last few pairs from Goodwill.

    I’ve re-purposed old medical scrubs to make yard clothes, with thigh pockets and halter top. I’ve had these over 20 years and have patched them so often they’ve worn thin at knees and butt.

    I have several gas appliances, because we have frequent power outages and I prefer cooking with gas, but the newer ones came with digital controls. The digital controls on three of four have gone bad. What happened to manual controls and flint starts? If they work for butane lighters, certainly they would still work for gas stoves and demand water heaters. What kind of idiocy drives this trend?

    Don’t get me started on plastic joints at stress points, such as on metal lawn chairs. That stuff is dangerous and completely unfixable.

    I loved “The Waste Makers” and have reason to be reminded of it often. Thanks for yet another “me too” kind of blog.

    Liked by 1 person

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