An Unexpected Save, and Warranties

I'm a klutz. There's no denying it. I regularly drop things. I regularly fall, often flat on my face. Of course, in large part this has to do with my poor proprioception, my body's ability to tell where I am in space. This is a sensory issue and is one I've had since I was little, and isn't going away any time soon. So it isn't really fair to call myself a klutz, because this isn't my fault, but that isn't the point of why I'm writing this.

The reason I'm bringing this up is, to put it simply, my phone gets a beating ib a regular basis. Either from my falling while holding it, or dropping it, or knocking it off something. I have had to replace my phone far too often because of a shattered screen, since repairing the screen usually costs nearly as much as a new phone, at least locally. I can't just go without a phone, or with a barely working one/with a shattered screen since I use my phone for work.

To try to get my phone to last as long as possible, I always use a screen protector. This works by adding an extra layer of protection to the screen, and taking the impact of a fall instead of the screen. Of course this doesn't always work, and sometimes the screen will break in addition to the protector, but at least it is better than nothing.

You can imagine that my screen protectors get pretty knocked up. And when the standard plexiglass screen protectors break, they generally shatter and can even give you glass splinters. There are times when you can just replace the screen protector and not the screen, but only if the fall wasn't that hard, and it didn't break the screen under the protector. Which has happened to me often enough.

About 9 months ago, my screen protector cracked, and I went to a store to replace it. While I was there, the proprietor told me that they recommended I get a silicon screen protector, as they do a better job of protecting the screen. I wasn't sure what to do, as the silicon protector was twice the price of the glass one, but they said it did a better job. (And it made sense that it would, as silicon is definitely more durable than plexiglass.) They tried to win me over by telling me that there was a one year warranty on the silicon protector, you just need to bring in the receipt. I told them that that was nice and all, but that wouldn't work for me since I always lose receipts and wouldn't be able to use it. "Just take a picture of it," they told me. "You can also bring in the picture of the receipt." Deal. I got the silicon protector.

To be honest, it did a much better job protecting the screen. I faceplanted quite a few times with my phone in hand, dropped it many more times, and still my screen held up. But then one day recently I face planted extra hard and the phone hit the ground from the corner, and that was a hard bang in the worst spot (because the screen protector doesn't reach all the way to the corner, and I think something physics related too, all the pressure being on one point instead of being spread out), and my screen had spider web looking cracks starting from the bottom corner corner (see the picture at the top). And of course the silicon screen protector was all scratched up too. 

Not long after that, the top of the screen protector started bubbling and peeling away (ostensibly from the fall) and I knew I needed a new protector. But I was really nervous and started looking at prices for a new phone, because in the past, when I had such a fall, with similar types of cracks, as soon as the plexiglass screen protector came off, part of the shattered phone screen came off with it as well, and I ended up needing a whole new phone. My son, Lee, told me that I shouldn't automatically assume I'll need a new phone, and it is very possible that I'd be able to replace the screen protector without the screen coming apart when I do so. Gingerly I attempted to peel back the screen protector while sending out a prayer that it wouldn't pull up bits of the screen as I did so, and fortunately it worked. With that, I was able to breathe better (no new phone! yay for not needing to spend that money!) and I planned on replacing the phone screen next time I was in the city.

A few days ago, I was in the city for a meeting, and after that I had planned to run errands. I was with my friend Babs, and she asked me what errands I was running, and I told her that I was going to replace my phone's screen protector. 

"Oh, you're going to use the warranty for that?" "What warranty?" I had no idea what she was talking about. Have I mentioned that I have a terrible memory? Thankfully I had Babs with me who does have a good memory, and happened to have been with me when I had gotten my screen protector before, and reminded me that I'd photographed the receipt to use for my warranty.

And so, when I went to get my screen cover replaced, I was able to take advantage of the warranty and get a new one for free. It was a totally unexpected save, since I had completely forgotten about the warranty, and would have paid for a new screen protector if not for myfriend. 

I see now why the silicon screen protectors work, because it definitely protected my phone much better than the plexiglass ones that I've had, and even with a bunch of nasty falls, the screen is still totally usable, even if there's a small spiderweb of cracks radiating from the bottom corner.

But now this taught me an important lesson. Because I have a bad memory, I need to have a place to keep track of all the warranties that I have. Taking a picture of it isn't enough, because if I don't remember that I have the warranty, I wouldn't remember to look for the picture. I use Google Keep on a regular basis and I think I'll now have an easily searchable (or pinned) note with a list of all my warranties and a link to a folder where I'll keep these pictures of them, so that I won't have to remember which things I have warranties for, and so I don't have to search through all my photographs to find the warranties even if I remembered them. (Thankfully Google photos let me search for receipts, and I was able to find it that way, but that doesn't always work so well.)

So not only did I save money now, I learned something important about myself and figured out a method that I can save money in the future as well. Awesome!

Do you usually remember about warranties that you have? How do you keep track of them? Also, anyone else really hard on their phone? What do you do to protect yours?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal

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