That is the question! The other day R happened to be cleaning at his job, and while he was, he was listening to music on his iPod. One of his coworkers approached him and asked him about it.
He explained that his iPod kept randomly changing songs while in his pocket, and he didn’t understand why. R asked him if he had his iPod locked, and his coworker looked puzzled. R explained to him that there’s a little switch on iPods that enables them to be locked, which means when the buttons are pressed, they don’t do anything. Thus, no random song changing.
R’s simple tip to his coworker may have saved him some money, as he told R he was getting ready to throw his iPod out! Are you kidding? A simple search on the web would have yielded him similar information. I couldn’t believe he would have gotten rid of it over a simple issue like that.
Unfortunately, things like this happen far too often. Simple solutions escape some people. They don’t want to bother going through troubleshooting, they just want their items fixed.
Fortunately for us, we can benefit from this! I’m sure many of you have encountered perfectly good items on Craigslist that had minor issues which could be easily repaired. Some people don’t think it’s worth the effort to make the small fix, and instead get an entirely new product. We get a discounted item and we learn something from the experience.
My goal isn’t to sound demeaning here. I am very lucky that I grew up with a dad who could fix everything. If something went wrong in the house, he was tasked with diagnosing the problem and finding the solution, which he did successfully quite often. I was kind of spoiled in that I could just point him to the problem and it would magically be working soon after that.
My parents never had the mentality of throwing things away simply because one or two things went wrong. They couldn’t afford to. They tried to make their dollars stretch by researching DIY solutions, and this mentality was passed down to me. If I am struggling with something, I always research how to fix it. I would be horrified to throw something out or sell it, only to find out later that a simple fix would have resolved everything!
For example: I’ve heard that a lot of people have issues with their Keurig machines pouring only half a cup (even when selecting the largest cup option) after some time of owning it. Keurig has an entire video tutorial on how to remedy the situation, so I watched it and learned what I have to do to hopefully clean out the machine.
Well, my aunt recently found out that my cousin had the same issue, and had returned it to Bed Bath & Beyond (she didn’t have the receipt) for a brand new one. She planned on doing the same. While I purchased mine there, I’d feel bad returning it when it would probably work just fine if I took the time to clean it. Machines require maintenance, after all. If I followed the directions and it still didn’t work, that’s another story.
I understand that not all repairs are easy or simple, and some can be dangerous, especially when it comes to automotive, electric, or plumbing. There were a few times where my dad had to call in the professionals after realizing something was broken beyond his means. All I’m asking is that you at least try to figure out the problem. You become more educated, and you’re also less likely to get ripped off. There are definitely professionals out there who take advantage of your lack of knowledge, and because some don’t know any better, they believe them.
In R’s coworker’s case, it was even just a matter of experimenting. I like to know what the buttons on my devices do, even if there are fewer now. Ignorance isn’t an excuse.
Do you research solutions online before throwing in the towel, or do you sometimes take the easy road? Do you know of anyone that doesn’t like to troubleshoot issues?