Return of the Backpack

I got my backpack back from Jansport yesterday, and I must say that I am more than impressed with the quality of the repairs. In fact, I’d say that they went well above and beyond the repairs I sent it in for. In the letter that I included with the backpack when I sent it, the only repairs I mentioned were that it needed the main compartment zipper replaced, and I needed the straps replaced. The zipper had contracted the dreaded “zipper disease,” and the foam in the straps had compressed so much that it might as well not have been there anymore. (Provided, these problems had occurred after about eight years of continuous use, which I think is pretty damn good.) Not only did they fix these things well beyond my satisfaction, they also replaced the handle on the top of the bag, the zipper pull that had broken off the front pocket, and the fraying of the fabric on some of the inside seams of the bag. None of those things bothered me, but I am beyond pleased that their repair center apparently takes time to assess the returned bag for everything that needs fixing rather than just relying on what the customer tells them.

So, to get down to specifics, the zipper that they replaced the original with is a heavier-duty zipper than what was on the bag to begin with. I think that at some point in the last decade, they switched over to using these heftier zippers on all of their bags due to the propensity of the zippers like those on mine to get zipper disease. So, on one hand, the zippers don’t match anymore, but on the other hand, it’s a lot less likely I’m going to have this problem again. Also, the zipper pulls on the new zipper don’t have the spiffy ‘JS’ that the rest of my zippers have (and that the old zipper had), but again, I’d say that the minor aesthetics are a small price to pay for a fully-functional backpack. The zipper pull that they replaced on the front pocket, however, does match the old ones, and that is more important than the main compartment zipper pulls matching, as the one on the front is most visible. In addition, they tied new leather bits to the ends of the replaced pull and one of the pulls on the new zipper, so when it was returned to me, it looked more-or-less the way it would if I’d bought it new in the store (except mine has decorative patches on it :)).

I am also incredibly happy with the new straps. I honestly don’t remember the original straps being this nice. Again, I’m thinking that the straps have beein improved on Jansport bags in the decade since I bought mine. The foam is thicker and firmer than I remember the original straps being when my bag was new. The adjustment clips on the straps are different than the original ones as well — they have a more rounded profile. Again, likely a change/improvement in their bag construction. I also find the way that they replaced the straps to be interesting. I suppose that since they had to open up the top seam where the handle is to put in the new straps, they put in a new handle as well. The old one was just fine, in my opinion, though it was a little worn from having been used to hang my backpack from the latch on my locker in high school. What they did leave as original, however, were the lower mesh adjustment straps, which makes sense since there was nothing wrong with them, and they’d have had to take the whole bag apart just about to replace them. So their repair process is quality and efficient.

So, in short, I highly recommend Jansport’s warranty repair service for anyone who has a Jansport or Eastpak bag that needs to be fixed. Their turnaround is just about exactly what they say it is, the work is just about perfect, and it’s about as low-hassle as it gets. They don’t require receipts, product registration, proof-of-purchase…nothing. I am incredibly happy with it. I just can’t say that enough.

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5 Responses

  1. Paula says:

    Well yeah for Jansport. You rarely hear of great customer service anymore. They should hire you to do their publicity.

  2. Laura Madere says:

    Sorry I commented on the other page for some reason I couldn’t find this page. I am so happy you got your back pack back and it looks great! What an awesome company! I am going to send in my daughters and now I can let her know they will just fix it and she can relax! ha ha She just knows they either won’t fix it or replace it all together and she’d lose all her art work and memories for good. She’s a 17 year old artist so you can imagine her bag means as much to her as yours does to you.
    Thank you so much for sharing I did a Swagbucks search and found you. 🙂
    Have a great life!

  3. Hillary says:

    I’m glad you found my posts helpful! I would warn you that depending on the types of holes and/or other damage to your daughter’s backpack, Jansport may or may not be willing or able to repair it. (See their warranty FAQ) I would also recommend contacting them about their warranty service using this form with any questions that aren’t addressed to your satisfaction in their FAQ. If you don’t hear back from them in a couple of days, mail them again…don’t wait a year like I did! 🙂

    When or if you do send off your daughter’s backpack, be sure to include on the page of information with your contact info and description of repairs that you want them to return the backpack to you if it can’t be repaired. Otherwise they’ll replace it, and your daughter’s artwork will be lost!

    Good luck, and let me know how it works out for you.

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