Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby AUbicycles » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:43 am

Cannondale seem to be playing games with their customers regarding the lifetime warranty. When you buy a bike and are told that it has a lifetime warranty it is a fair assumption that it has a lifetime warranty..... but no.

I was forwarded a copy of this Cannondale USA official response, the first two parts are excerpts from the warranty info.

Cannondale wrote:FRAMES: (frame, fork structure, swing arm): Cannondale frames (except frames for Freeride, and Dirt Jumping bikes, see below) are warranted by Cycling Sports Group, Inc., 16 Trowbridge Drive, Bethel, CT 06801 against manufacturing defects in materials and/or workmanship for the lifetime of the original owner.

Damage resulting from normal wear and tear, including the results of fatigue, is not covered. Fatigue damage is a symptom of the frame being worn out through normal use. It is one kind of normal wear and tear, and it is the owner’s responsibility to inspect his/her bicycle. See Section 5. and D.

We consider the case of your frame being part of the normal wear and tear (fatigue). Your frame is therefore not covered under warranty.


The gentleman affected (which is also covered in more detail in this thread on Cannondale Warranty) asks, rightly so, "So what do they cover?". I would like to say that I am surprised at the response by Cannondale, but this is not the first time I have heard this. Selling Cannondales with a Lifetime warranty is misleading if damage as a result of normal use is not covered. A 5 year warranty Realistic and acceptable.

When a buyer purchases a bike with a lifetime guarantee they are highly unlikely to read the terms and conditions or warranty information before purchase - in store a buyer accepts that the frame has a lifetime warranty which is generally understood to include normal usage. To demonstrate the point, Cannondale can state that every breakage is a result of fatigue and normal wear and tear - so the only situation that you could expect (or hope) that it was covered under the lifetime warranty is if it was never riden.
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by BNA » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:02 am

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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby warthog1 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:02 am

Cycling Sports Group are proving very effective in ensuring the slur "crack'n'fail" remains foremost in peoples minds when they think cannondale. Can't see this helping the future reputation of the brand :roll:
http://www.google.com.au/#hl=en&sclient=psy-ab&q=crack+n+fail&oq=crack+n+&gs_l=hp.1.2.0l4.1652.4839.0.8550.8.7.0.1.1.0.270.1707.2-7.7.0.les%3B..0.0...1c.1.ZC6B0qnMT68&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.&fp=77d97114e097c10e&bpcl=38625945&biw=1920&bih=920

It's stupid practice IMO and they need to sort it out as they make some really good bikes. That is going to be forgotten in the noise people make (rightly so) when they find the warranty is a shyster's document.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby AUbicycles » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:03 am

Yes, I have a link - and feel this deserves a new thread.

If you do a Google Search for Cannondale Lifetime Warranty there are plenty of cases of people getting warranty replacements, also for older bikes - so where exactly is the line drawn.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Nobody » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:21 am

From what I gather so far, the warranty would only suit serious cyclists who are going to wear out the bike in < 5 years (like TLL). They seem OK to replace after a short period of time, but the wording does allow them to effectively do whatever they want.

Better to buy a bike that is far less likely to need a warranty, than have to deal with these kinds of problems IMO.

[Christopher, please delete my previous post if you want. It's just noise now (like many of my posts). :) ]
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby warthog1 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 9:24 am

Nobody wrote: It's just noise now (like many of my posts). :) ]

Ditto :oops: well most in my case. But hey, I don't have as many as you :P
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby kirky92au » Fri Nov 16, 2012 1:49 pm

I can see how it is misleading, and yes essentially the warranty is all show no substance. You are still covered by Australian Consumer Law, assuming you bought it in Australia. I don't know how far you could get stating that:
ACCC wrote:A Major Problem:
  • An issue that would have stopped a reasonable person from buying the product or service if they’d known about it.
  • A product that is significantly different from the sample or description
As they are major problems, you can get a replacement or refund. I don't think it would be that far of a stretch to say that a "reasonable person" would be stopped from purchasing an item if the warranty was significantly different to what was describe. Also goes into the other point that you are only told about the "Lifetime warranty on their frames", nothing about normally wear is not covered in the lifetime.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:13 pm

Does Giant mention that as soon as you race one of their bikes it is void of warranty ( even if it is a race ready bike ) ... no, read the warranty.
Cannondale warranty is better than most.
"Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages¨... pretty misleading title as it does cover breakages.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Nobody » Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:51 pm

Reminds me of the sticker you get on some MTBs (I've seen one on a Cell MTX-R) that say something like "Not designed for off road use or stunting" even though they clearly look like MTBs. Eg:
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Nov 16, 2012 4:59 pm

I have a Lapierre cyclocross bike. It is designed to race. I was warned when I bought it that it had no warranty if raced... and that if I had a problem the rep would check local results to look for my name :roll: .

Point is all warranties have fine print, some more than others.
My Raceline frame cracked after 2 years, warranty I think... no, 5 years from manufacture date... I bought it as old stock :roll: .
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby jcjordan » Fri Nov 16, 2012 10:16 pm

toolonglegs wrote:Does Giant mention that as soon as you race one of their bikes it is void of warranty ( even if it is a race ready bike ) ... no, read the warranty. .

Mind you they never seems to enforce that one.

Through shop I worked at use to be a giant dealer and the never asked once if it had been raced. Even had one Huygens tell the rep to his face the crack happened during a sprint.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby damhooligan » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:42 pm

toolonglegs wrote:Does Giant mention that as soon as you race one of their bikes it is void of warranty ( even if it is a race ready bike ) ... no, read the warranty.
Cannondale warranty is better than most.
"Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages¨... pretty misleading title as it does cover breakages.


But thats the whole point of this thread.
As one costumer had a breakage, so it should be covered,but it was not covered.
:|

toolonglegs wrote:Point is all warranties have fine print, some more than others.
My Raceline frame cracked after 2 years, warranty I think... no, 5 years from manufacture date... I bought it as old stock :roll: .


Just cause the warranty has those 'fine' print, doesn't make it right, nor legal.
Misleading advertisemnet is illegal.
Selling a bike with lifetime warranty, without provding it when needed is a breach of contract, no matter what you put in your warranty.
You cant sell it with lifetime warranty, and then say in fine print, sorry dude, you do not have warranty.
That to me is illegal, or at least should be.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby damhooligan » Sat Nov 17, 2012 3:50 pm

AUbicycles wrote:Cannondale seem to be playing games with their customers regarding the lifetime warranty. When you buy a bike and are told that it has a lifetime warranty it is a fair assumption that it has a lifetime warranty..... but no.

I was forwarded a copy of this Cannondale USA official response, the first two parts are excerpts from the warranty info.

Cannondale wrote:FRAMES: (frame, fork structure, swing arm): Cannondale frames (except frames for Freeride, and Dirt Jumping bikes, see below) are warranted by Cycling Sports Group, Inc., 16 Trowbridge Drive, Bethel, CT 06801 against manufacturing defects in materials and/or workmanship for the lifetime of the original owner.

Damage resulting from normal wear and tear, including the results of fatigue, is not covered. Fatigue damage is a symptom of the frame being worn out through normal use. It is one kind of normal wear and tear, and it is the owner’s responsibility to inspect his/her bicycle. See Section 5. and D.

We consider the case of your frame being part of the normal wear and tear (fatigue). Your frame is therefore not covered under warranty.


The gentleman affected (which is also covered in more detail in this thread on Cannondale Warranty) asks, rightly so, "So what do they cover?". I would like to say that I am surprised at the response by Cannondale, but this is not the first time I have heard this. Selling Cannondales with a Lifetime warranty is misleading if damage as a result of normal use is not covered. A 5 year warranty Realistic and acceptable.

When a buyer purchases a bike with a lifetime guarantee they are highly unlikely to read the terms and conditions or warranty information before purchase - in store a buyer accepts that the frame has a lifetime warranty which is generally understood to include normal usage. To demonstrate the point, Cannondale can state that every breakage is a result of fatigue and normal wear and tear - so the only situation that you could expect (or hope) that it was covered under the lifetime warranty is if it was never riden.


The problem with cannondale is their interpretation of normal wear and tear.
I do not consider this normal.
You can not inspect a bike for fatique an inspection is pointless.
Its not the owners responsibilty to inspect this.
But it is cannondales responsibility to provide a frame that wil last a lifetime, as that is what the warranty suggests.

Cannondale needs to rename their warranty , or change their warranty policy.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby toolonglegs » Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:14 pm

My point is that it isn't only cannondale... I could give you examples of trek not honoring warranties ( even when it is a person selling their bikes ).
Giant telling clients they had driven into a garage with a bike on the roof even though they never had a roof rack... Etc etc etc.
Personally I have had very good experiences with cannondale Australia. Two frames replaced, one when i thought it would be a problem because I wasn't living in Australia anymore... But it wasn't.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Kenzo » Sat Nov 17, 2012 7:29 pm

toolonglegs wrote:My point is that it isn't only cannondale... I could give you examples of trek not honoring warranties ( even when it is a person selling their bikes ).
Giant telling clients they had driven into a garage with a bike on the roof even though they never had a roof rack... Etc etc etc.

Giant said that or the bike shop said that?
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby find_bruce » Sat Nov 17, 2012 7:33 pm

toolonglegs wrote:My point is that it isn't only cannondale... I could give you examples of trek not honoring warranties ( even when it is a person selling their bikes ).
Giant telling clients they had driven into a garage with a bike on the roof even though they never had a roof rack... Etc etc etc.
Personally I have had very good experiences with cannondale Australia. Two frames replaced, one when i thought it would be a problem because I wasn't living in Australia anymore... But it wasn't.

And your point is absolutely on the money - Avanti is yet another. Marketing departments sell bikes based on lifetime warranties and then bean counters get involved to reduce exposure & they will weasel out of it however they can.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Philipthelam » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:12 pm

find_bruce wrote:
toolonglegs wrote:My point is that it isn't only cannondale... I could give you examples of trek not honoring warranties ( even when it is a person selling their bikes ).
Giant telling clients they had driven into a garage with a bike on the roof even though they never had a roof rack... Etc etc etc.
Personally I have had very good experiences with cannondale Australia. Two frames replaced, one when i thought it would be a problem because I wasn't living in Australia anymore... But it wasn't.

And your point is absolutely on the money - Avanti is yet another. Marketing departments sell bikes based on lifetime warranties and then bean counters get involved to reduce exposure & they will weasel out of it however they can.

Your right, a lot of the times they try to make up excuses/blame the rider so they don't have to honour the warranty.
I suppose the difference here is that Cannondale advertises a "lifetime warranty" even when they say that anything that happens after 5 years is due to normal wear and tear.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby warthog1 » Sun Nov 18, 2012 1:55 am

It is dishonest to trade on a lifetime warranty that is designed to instil confidence in a product and then call failures a result of normal wear and tear. Don't call it a lifetime warranty if you deem that lifetime to be 5 years. Call it a 5 year warranty if that is what it is. I'd be having a loud whinge to whatever consumer organisation I could find if they used that line on me had I bought the bike new and looked after it.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Marty Moose » Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:52 am

I know two people who have broken cannondales both not covered they now they don't own them. I would not buy one for that reason Giant wrty is fantastic often an up graded product.

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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby usernameforme » Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:35 pm

Marty Moose wrote:Giant wrty is fantastic often an up graded product.


I've been a victim of that :D
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby AUbicycles » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:55 pm

From an unverified source I am informed that Cannondale will honor the majority of claims. It is fair enough as well to have terms like 'original owner' which is reasonable. But because there are exceptions and some claims that seem reasonable are knocked back - this is a problem.

Quite simply, clarity is required, the obvious one is to trash the lifetime warranty and make it a five year warranty - A lifetime warranty is attractive but in terms of brand reputation and sales - keep it reasonable and any lost sales will more than likely be covered in savings where after 5 years they are not liable to replace the bike.

I like Cannondale as a brand, I rode a lovely Evo SuperSix earlier this year, have always been a fan of the Bad Boy which for urban cycling (at least overseas) was innovative, love their concept bikes and have silent respect for The Lefty fork. An alumnium CAAD 6 I was riding occassional expired when the owner was riding and the chain stay sheared at the dropouts. They weren't the original owner so it was a case of bad luck but it was also over 5 years old so not unreasonable to accept material fatigue and failure.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby queequeg » Wed Nov 28, 2012 1:30 pm

I didn't buy a Cannondale as my new bike because of this issue, especially after I had two Trek bikes replaced under warranty in two years, and the damage was what Cannondale would call fatigue. This is because the alloy tubing sheared completely through above the weld line on the seat tube/bottom bracket join. I was not going to risk that so I bought a frame that has a real lifetime warranty policy.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby im_no_pro » Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:25 pm

My 2c:

There is a lot of sayings about assumptions, many of them apply in this instance. One assumption is by lifetime they mean the owner's lifetime. They mean the bike's lifetime (whilst its owned by the original owner). Second assumption is lifetime warranty = replacement no matter what. I would dispute that.

In terms of whether its misleading/deceptive conduct or not the reasonable person test would need to be applied. I ask you this question: Would a reasonable person expect Cannondale to replace their worn out bike? Same same but different: If you were offered a lifetime warranty on your new car: would you ask Toyota to replace your car after 15 years because you had driven it 300,000km's and the engine bearings were shot?

I'd say no. Not reading the warranty information is the same as not reading the 14 pages of terms and conditions prior to clicking the next button for iTunes or whatever else. It's your decision not to read it, you cant blame the company given they provided you with the information. They cant make you read it (unless its a bank, then you have to sit there and listen while they read it to you).
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby Nobody » Thu Nov 29, 2012 10:36 pm

im_no_pro wrote:There is a lot of sayings about assumptions, many of them apply in this instance. One assumption is by lifetime they mean the owner's lifetime. They mean the bike's lifetime (whilst its owned by the original owner).
It appears to be that way, but since their bike's lifetime with Al or C have a lot to do with fatigue due to number of stress cycles, it starts to look like, "How long is a piece of string?". That is why Christopher has been saying they should specify a time.

im_no_pro wrote:In terms of whether its misleading/deceptive conduct or not the reasonable person test would need to be applied. I ask you this question: Would a reasonable person expect Cannondale to replace their worn out bike?
It appears (to at least me) to be misleading to the inexperienced who don't know that their frame has a limited life span due to fatigue.

im_no_pro wrote:Same same but different: If you were offered a lifetime warranty on your new car: would you ask Toyota to replace your car after 15 years because you had driven it 300,000km's and the engine bearings were shot?
But we aren't talking about engine bearings being worn out, we are talking about the chassis cracking across the middle.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:04 am

you could say Trek says the same thing...
Trek Limited Lifetime Warranty

Trek Bicycle Corporation provides each original retail purchaser of the bicycle a lifetime warranty against defects in materials and workmanship in the bicycle frame and rigid fork when purchased from an authorized Trek dealer. The warranty on the Diesel DH frameset is limited to one year. Trek Bicycle Corporation likewise warrants all original parts on the bicycle, excluding suspension forks and rear shock absorbers, for a period of one year from the date of purchase. Suspension forks and rear shock absorbers shall be covered by the stated warranty of their original manufacturers. Paint and decals are warranted for one year. This warranty is expressly limited to the repair or replacement of a defective frame, fork, or defective part and is the sole remedy of the warranty. This warranty applies only to the original owner and is not transferable. Claims under this warranty must be made through an authorized Trek dealer. Proof of purchase is required.

A warranty registration card must be completed and received by the Trek Bicycle Corporation before a warranty claim may be processed. This warranty covers bicycles and components outside the United States only if purchased through an authorized international Trek distributor or Trek dealer within the country of purchase. The warranty does not cover normal wear and tear, improper assembly or follow-up maintenance, installation of parts or accessories not originally intended or compatible with the bicycle as sold, damage or failure due to accident, misuse or neglect, or modification of the frame, fork or components. Trek Bicycle Corporation shall not be responsible for incidental or consequential damages. Some states do not allow the exclusion of incidental or consequential damages, so the above exclusion may not apply to you. This warranty gives the consumer specific legal rights, and those rights may vary from place to place. This warranty does not affect the statutory rights of the consumer. All photos, illustrations, colors, weights, and specifications contained in this catalog are based on the latest production information at the time of publication. Trek reserves the right to make changes at any time, without notice, in colors, materials, equipment, specifications and models. Any variations in colors shown may be due to the reproductive variations of the printing process. Photos may include non-U.S. equipment. Some models may be shown with optional equipment. Off road bike weights based on medium or 18 inch frame size. Road bike weights based on 56cm frame size. ©2001 Trek Bicycle Corporation. All rights reserved. Trek and the Trek logo are registered trademarks of Trek Bicycle Corporation. Nike and the Nike swoosh are registered trademarks of Nike, Inc. Cycleops is a registered trademark of Graber.


Buy a frame and it cracks 5 years down the line due to normal stresses of riding... not due to defects in materials and workmanship etc etc. Basically the same as Cannondale's limited warranty says. I had 3 Gary Fisher ( Trek ) frames replaced in one year due to bad design so I am not complaining. Just saying don't kid yourself that if 10 years down the track your Trek cracks that it will be an automatic replacement.
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Re: Cannondale Lifetime warranty doesn't cover breakages

Postby warthog1 » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:30 am

Nobody wrote: bike's lifetime with Al or C have a lot to do with fatigue due to number of stress cycles .


I don't think you can narrow it down to any frame material. I think it is more down to light weight/lack of material. Light steel frames are also known to crack/split. I have a cheap carbon/aluminium Azzurri that has been crashed multiple times and travelled ~40k kms, even has a small chip out of the clear coat on the trailing edge of one of the carbon fork legs where something when through the spokes and hit it. Not a problem rides as well as it did when it was new, but it is heavyish for a roadie, so has more material to resist breaking.
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