5 Things I Break that Cost me Money…

…and what I try to do about it

broken glass

Today’s post comes to you from Anne of Money Propeller:

There are some things that seem to have a death wish when they are around me. I don’t know what it is, but boy, can it really get expensive sometimes! Breaking some of these things is just an annoyance, but for others, it gets expensive quickly.

When you break things, the costs are in more than the initial item’s cost. There’s the initial, “oh crap, I broke it” emotions, the frustration that you now have to clean up the mess, or deal with the breakage, the decision to replace or not replace the item, the researching (in some cases) on what you are going to replace the broken item with, the time to go to the store and order the item, come home, unwrap it, clean the new one and finally be done.  That’s a whole lot of wasted time, emotion and money.

Here are 5 things I break that cost me money:

  1. Wine Glasses

This is a big bad doozie.  I think it is written somewhere that a wine glass must break once per year. When we had IKEA wine glasses, this was just a pain. Now that we have Riedel and Orrefors glasses, there is also a cringe due to the cost (and the annoyance of cleaning up shattered glass that finds its way halfway across the house!).

Here’s the catch: I tend to break glasses the next day. Yes, you read that right. Most of the time, I can’t blame the contents of the wine glasses for their shattering. I often break them while cleaning up. Generally, knocking them over when I’m reaching for something else.

The Solution?

Dirty wine glasses go in a line along the back of the counter. That way, I’m not reaching over and around them to grab other dishes or things. It’s not perfect, but it’s a tiny, tiny change that can save me up to $50 a pop!

  1. Sunglasses

When I was a teenager, I accepted that I would spend around $100 on sunglasses every year. I had a favourite style of Ryder sunglasses that ran around $50. The hinges weren’t fantastic at being bent backward, most sunglass hinges aren’t, and I had them with me constantly. I discovered early on in my life that my blue eyes are quite sensitive to sunlight and that sunglasses were a simple solution.

When I wasn’t wearing those sunglasses, I’d hook them on my shirt, for storage, or through a necklace.

  1. Bike Inner Tubes

You’re probably thinking, “Anne, bike inner tubes are disposable, why are they on the list?” This is to share an experience with you, where slight misuse of an item can cost you money.

Downhill bike tubes are about $12 each. For a while, my spouse was getting a flat tire every single day of downhill biking. It was starting to get extremely frustrating. Being halfway down a trail, with a flat tire, is a pain and by the time you get to the bottom, go to the tools, take the tire off, etc. it’s at least an hour’s project.  Not fun.

$24 a weekend in bike tubes also isn’t fantastic. Then one day, we learned that my spouse should keep the PSI toward the higher end of the range. It turns out, when my spouse bought the bike, our friends who suggested a PSI, were suggesting numbers that worked for them. They were all pretty small people, definitively smaller than my spouse. Well, it turns out inflating the tires an extra ten PSI stops them from popping.

Since learning that, only one bike tube has ruptured. That’s saving us at least $100 and several hours, a summer, all for a few more pumps!

  1. Digital Cameras

This is one that really gets pricey.  Currently, I own three digital cameras. I know that seems excessive! I have a propensity to drop digital cameras, usually, on concrete.  They are not very good at being dropped on concrete, let me tell you. I’ve also been walking a few inches in the ocean and had one big wave come and soak my waist. Another time, on the same trip, I took my camera sand boarding.  You can imagine how well that went. The same camera survived all of that, but just barely.  As soon as I was settled, I ordered a new one.  One where the lens could protract and retract, and the screen displayed on more than half.

Thankfully for me, cameras have been getting tougher! My latest point and shoot is “shockproof” and waterproof.  I’m hoping that means it lasts a lot longer than its predecessor, which sits in a drawer.  The panel pops off the last one, after I dropped it on the very last day of a nearly 3 month trip.

  1. Tupperware Containers

Do you know those ziplock twist-and-lock round containers? I love those things because they seal so well, making them perfect for fruit salad and the likes. Unfortunately, those hard tops are very prone to cracking. Most recently, I had one shatter on me when I knocked it out of the freezer by mistake. That particular one contained an ice cream topping made up of ground nuts, chocolate and coffee.  It did a grand jb of getting all over my kitchen.

My spouse also does a fantastic job of leaving lunch containers of the trunk of the car for an extra day or two.  Now, that doesn’t seem like it is very long, but when it is the dead of summer, mold starts growing in a second. Often with those containers, I don’t even bother opening them, they go straight to the trash.  (Normally, if I am throwing one out for mold or because it is broken, I rinse it off and put it in the recycling.)

I don’t quite have a solution yet to my Tupperware problems, but boy do they cost me money!

Let’s also not talk about that one week where I shattered a bottle of BBQ sauce on the floor and two days later my spouse dropped a homemade jar of salsa. There was definitely something in the air that week!

Do you have a propensity to break things and say “Crap, that cost me money!”?

Anne loves to travel, even if it means having to buy new cameras on occasion. She also has a love of bagels with thick cream cheese, and her two blogs (and counting!) Unique Gifter and Money Propeller. Come hang out with her on twitter @ugifter, she’s on there a lot.

14 thoughts on “5 Things I Break that Cost me Money…”

  1. Shannon @ Financially Blonde

    I don’t necessarily break tupperware; however, I am convinced that there is a tupperware black hole in my house, we always seem to have mismatched tops and bottoms no matter how hard I try to organize them. Also, we used to break wine glasses all the time until we switched to the stemless glasses, now we have a lot less breakage drama where the glasses are concerned.

    1. There’s something about them eh? I only have two types of square ones, and two types of little round ones, and there are never the same quantity of tops and bottoms, but at least they are very interchangeable!

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  3. Digital cameras were on my list too. I really don’t use them anymore, but I seemed to go through a lot back in the day. Another item for me is blenders. It always seems that either something goes wrong with the motor, I I drop the top part and it either chips, or once the whole things shattered and yes, it seemed to fly into every part of the apartment.

    1. Oh no, that would have been a crazy mess! I managed to chip my new food processor about a week after owning it, too 🙁 The column bit slipped out when I was putting it away and the corner chipped on the floor.

    2. I hear you on the blenders, Tonya! Even though I’ve experienced the cheap ones breaking down so easily, I still can’t bring myself to spend a lot on a Ninja or one of those top brands.

  4. Kara @ The Daily Whisk

    I’m with you on wine glasses. I have four glasses I think…each a survivor from a different set!

    1. Anne @ Money Propeller

      Haha, at least you don’t need wine charms, everyone’s glass is unique 🙂

  5. Digital cameras always break for me as well 🙁 I used to think I was buying low quality ones but they are so expensive either way. So I just gave up and started using my cell phone camera which is still pretty good. But a waterproof and shockproof digital camera is definitely something I should look into. Thanks!

    1. Thankfully the prices on cameras have come down substantially in the past decade. The waterproof one I bought was just over $200 last spring, I think, and there were other options that were less.

    2. The camera on the iphone today is really impressive! I have a cheap Nokia phone, and the camera quality is sadly lacking.

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