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Thread: Repairing rather than throwaways

  1. #1
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Repairing rather than throwaways

    I did think of adding this to the thread on plastic but this is different enough to stand on its own, IMO.

    From BBC:
    https://www.bbc.com/future/article/2...voidable-waste
    France is making right to repair legislation and repair cafes more popular. It will be interesting to see how widely this approach spreads over the next few years. I would love to use my iPhone and Macbook Air without concern of built-in obsolescence.

    "The French capital hosts a dozen of these so-called "repair cafes" – free, monthly initiatives that allow local residents to fix household objects and electronics with the help and advice of enthusiastic volunteers. Pioneered by journalist Martine Postma in Amsterdam in 2009, hundreds of similar workshops take place across Europe...

    But significant amounts of that waste could be avoided through repairs. According to a study by the French Environment and Energy Management Agency, only 40% of electronics breakdowns in France are repaired. But surveys have found nearly two-thirds of Europeans would rather repair their products than buy new ones. Much like Imene's kitchen scales, French officials believe the current system is broken and needs to be fixed...


    In an effort to defuse this vast amount of avoidable waste, France's National Assembly last year voted to introduce an index of "repairability" ratings for appliances such as washing machines, lawnmowers, televisions and smartphones. In doing so, the French government hopes to increase the electronics repair rate to 60% within five years...

    Preliminary studies suggest the rise of repairs could have a huge impact. Analysis by the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), a network of environmental citizens' organisations in Europe, found that extending the lifetime of all washing machines, notebooks, vacuum cleaners and smartphones in the EU by one year would save four million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually by 2030 – the equivalent of taking two million cars off the roads each year.

    For those in the grassroots cafes of Paris, however, the reality of repairs is another world entirely. Lively chatter, the scent of fresh pastries and the clank of tools fill the room, with around a dozen of the repair stations occupied by participants.

    "They told me this couldn't be fixed," says Caroline, a local resident, waving a form from a manufacturer stating that her 20-year-old sewing machine is irreparable. "But we've identified the problem in a matter of minutes. Things work best when we take matters into our own hands."
    As Cicero said, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.”

  2. #2
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Wonderful trend; doubt manufacturers will be onboard. Planned obsolescence, don't you know.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    I would definitely rather repair my electronics.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Genius idea! We have taken advantage of similar "repair cafes" but they look like this: we tell our electrician neighbor or our roofer neighbor or our carpenter neighbor that we're going to pay someone to come and fix our roof/camper/light switch, and THEY say, "Don't do that!! I'll help you!" and they come and guide us through the repair and at night we provide some liquor and a good campfire and everyone's happy!

    But if you don't have the right mix of "volunteers" to give you the education you need, I think a repair cafe is a wonderful idea.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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    I just sleuthed around for 2 days on the internet and repaired my washing machine last night.
    I had ordered a part which I did not even need. I went to return it and Amazon did a returnless refund, which means I got my 10 dollars back and I can keep the part, in case I do need it in the future.

    We always buy the simplest washing machines and stoves so we can repair them ourselves. We repaired our stove in Michigan twice and our dryer once. The dryer is 10 years old.

    Not sure how old this washing machine is because it came with house, but we really like it when it works. We went to look at a used one on Craigslist while this one was broken, and it was older, smaller and not nearly as nice, the guy wanted a hundred dollars, and he had not used it in two years, so who knows if it would work anyway?

    On the other hand, we are trying to look on Craigslist or Habitat for a new stove since the one that came with house looks pretty awful.

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    One reason I dislike electronic controls on household machines (washer/dryer/dishwasher etc). Mechanical things are much easier to fix instead of replace. And around here, the small repair shops are all gone.

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    Senior Member Yppej's Avatar
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    Today I stapled together a couple pillows that had the stuffing starting to come out.

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    This is a great idea. So many European items, before the made in China craze, are well worth repairing.

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by early morning View Post
    One reason I dislike electronic controls on household machines (washer/dryer/dishwasher etc). Mechanical things are much easier to fix instead of replace. And around here, the small repair shops are all gone.
    Agree, electronic controls are the devil incarnate.

    Our neighbor in Hermann has just opened a small engine repair shop. The previous one went out of business two years ago. So I hope he does well.

    I bought a refurbished handmixer a couple months ago but the package thieves got to it before I did. I do plan to buy another one though.

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    A few years ago (maybe 5?) my DS in Minneapolis did an apprenticeship with a small company that repaired old electronics. He said he learned a lot and has helped him fix many things currently. We also try to buy things that do not have as many "gadgets" so, if possible, we can repair it. I hate shopping and am usually happy with what I have. I do not need new.

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