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Thread: Wader Guarantee

  1. #1
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    Default Wader Guarantee

    Out of curiosity, has anyone had to put LL Bean's warranty to the test on a pair of Waders?
    From their website: "From kayaks to slippers, fly rods to sweaters, everything we sell at L.L.Bean is backed by the same rock-solid guarantee of satisfaction. It's been that way since our founder sold his very first pair of Bean Boots in 1912. Today we're proud to continue the tradition by offering quality products and standing behind them. Of course, we want you to be the final judge of quality. If you're not satisfied with your purchase, we'll replace it or give you your money back. It's that simple."


    I recently sent a pair of Orvis waders back to the company for a slow leak. After about a month, I received them back from the company with no note or repair. After my third phone call to their customer represenative, I was told that their "Orvis 100% Customer Satisfaction" policy does not apply to their waders...and that a repair wasn't possible since they were made overseas.


    It was upsetting to get this feedback from Orvis. For me, it was an expensive purchase. For the type of money that I paid for these waders, I guess I expected better problem solving on the part of their customer service.


    So this post isn't so much to gripe about Orvis, but to ask about LL Bean. I did call Bean, and they told me that if I wasn't satisfied, I could return them for repair or replacement. Has anyone on this forum bought/used/broke a pair of Bean waders and attempted to return them? If so, what was the result?

  2. #2
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    Default

    I know that simms have a warentee and will repair any leaks also dealing with cloudveil has been easy and they gladly replaced my leaky waders. Orvis waders are pretty nice if you need to strain pasta
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  3. #3
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    I have used simms waders for years and the only time I have leaks, it is because I had worn the waders out. I have had wading boots from simms that have prematurely failed and simms easily replaced them.

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    I got a pair of patagonias about tens years ago and they have replaced them 3 times without a flinch. Don't know much about LL Bean though...

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    Default Thanks for the feedback

    Thank you for the Feedback!

  6. #6
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    Holy cow! that sounds like a great warrantee. What was the problem that they needed replaced? I think after about three years with a pair simms they would tell me the waders are worn out. I do fish quite a bit and put a lot of wear on them so three or four years suit me.

  7. #7
    Member ptarmigan's Avatar
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    LL Bean asks no questions, best in business for customer service. Doesnt work, dont like it, whatever, send it back with no issues. BTW I think they might have finally got it right with their newest waders.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by akflyfisher View Post
    Holy cow! that sounds like a great warrantee. What was the problem that they needed replaced? I think after about three years with a pair simms they would tell me the waders are worn out. I do fish quite a bit and put a lot of wear on them so three or four years suit me.
    For the Orvis waders, the problem was a slow leak in the stocking foot. My greatest disappointment was not that they wouldn't fix them for free, but that they wouldn't fix them at all...I found this odd since I perceived that a repair wouldn't be overly complex/costly. At any rate, they have lost my business forever due to what I perceived to be the opposite of their customer satisfaction guarantee, not that I suppose that it matters to anyone but me...

    Next time through, I'll buy the $100 pair from Sportsman's, or go with the recommendations below.

    Thanks all again for the advice.

  9. #9

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    Well,

    In my experience - all waders leak due to normal wear and tear sooner or later. If they leaked right out of the box, or something obvious with the manufacturing like the seams coming off in a week - I would expect a replacement but not after a year or longer or even a few months of hard fishing/wading/hiking.

    I personally do not expect a lifetime warrantee unless you wear the fabric all the way through, waders leak way before then. Lots of puncture/wear causes. I just find the leaks with isopropyl alcohol and fix them with a little aquaseal. No big deal.

  10. #10
    Member bigcox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flying ties View Post
    For the Orvis waders, the problem was a slow leak in the stocking foot. My greatest disappointment was not that they wouldn't fix them for free, but that they wouldn't fix them at all...I found this odd since I perceived that a repair wouldn't be overly complex/costly. At any rate, they have lost my business forever due to what I perceived to be the opposite of their customer satisfaction guarantee, not that I suppose that it matters to anyone but me...

    Next time through, I'll buy the $100 pair from Sportsman's, or go with the recommendations below.

    Thanks all again for the advice.
    Dang....hearing your story made me never want to buy a pair of anything from that place. Thanks for the post.

    Fish On!
    You know your not catching any fish when you start talking about the weather...


    http://www.alaskansalmonslayers.com/

  11. #11

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    Patagonia`s is the way to go. they have the best warranty and waders are the best too. I`m very happy Patagonia wader owner.

  12. #12

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    I used to have a pair of "Orafice" waders. They leaked like a spaghetti colander after less than half a season. That was several years ago. They weren't even worth sending back after a while. Maybe they're better now, but they lost my business.

    My last pair of waders were L.L. Bean. They were the top of the line waders at the time and had the Kevlar inserts in the knee area. After a couple of seasons the reinforced knees tore some. This didn't cause leaks, but the fabric on the outside flopped around. The design was a bit odd too. Water would collect in the knee area and drain out slowly around your ankles when leaving the water. This took time and left you carrying around a quart or two of water in each leg for several seconds. Annoying to say the least. I sent them back once when they tore. They they sent a new pair "no questions asked". I called first they gave me a number to put on the box. To be honest I picked Beans over Simms the first time because I grew up in Maine and my sister used to work for them. I just retired the pair to the trash after about eight years they are kaput. I'd feel guilty sending them back now.

    With that said I just purchased a pair of NIB Simms G4 waders off ebay for 399.00. Many of my friends have Simms waders and they certainly seem nice to me. I doubt they are perfect though because they still sell them with a patch kit enclosed. If I get 4 or 5 hard use seasons out of the Simms I'll be happy.
    Last edited by AKGunner; 04-15-2009 at 11:39. Reason: Fixed a few spelling errors

  13. #13

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    4 or 5 seasons on a simms g4?

    Not unless you are standing still....the last guide I went with was on his fourth pair of G4 simms waders - that is - for 2008. This isn't a caution against buying them bcz they leak, that wasn't the problem.....he wore them out.

    I'm guessing he guides 150+ days a year.

    As far as buying waders anywhere, especially simms, which have - well - let's call it a "certain fit", my main caution is to try them on before buying. They don't fit everyone. They don't fit me, for instance, and I'm a "medium" in most outdoor clothing. Simms waders are tight in the leg and chest relative to all other brands of wader and the "king" sizes are not normal either. The stiffness of the fabric in the leg doesn't lend itself to comfortable fits unless the inseam length is perfect. Just don't like them. At all.

    No matter what you decide, I wouldn't decide on the basis of perceived "warranty". What a hassle. Sending waders away hither and yon, with shipping charges, and not having waders, for what you can fix with a tube of aquaseal and a small bottle of rubbing alcohol on hand. Not for me.

  14. #14
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    Default spaghetti colander! Ha!

    Quote Originally Posted by AKGunner View Post
    They leaked like a spaghetti colander after less than half a season.
    LOL!

    Steve - thanks for the advice on the aquaseal - I'll try it when I have a few moments...

  15. #15

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    stevesch,

    Hard use might be the wrong word for me. I used to guide but don't anymore. I just bought an ocean boat so I expect to use the Simms less than normal. I don't expect to spend as much time on rivers, streams, float tubing, etc.. 4-5 seasons w/only small, easily patched leaks would be fine.

    I like how the Simms fit. I buy them extra large for the layer needed on the occasional super cold day. Feet fit well too.

    If someone can invent a leak proof, reasonable cost, breathable wader they'd make a mint.

    Tight Lines!

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