Holiday Catalog

jewelers repair

  • How you could be unintentionally killing your jewelry...

    Like a new car, new jewelry eventually requires maintenance. This isn’t a suggestion, it’s a fact. When you love your jewelry, you wear it (as you should). When you wear it, you damage it. This fact is not so much about quality craftsmanship as it is about wear and tear.

    When you drive thousands of miles on your car, it is not the car’s fault the tires need to be replaced. The same concept can (and should) be applied to jewelry. Under elements of normal wear and tear your metals should last you the following number of years without requiring prong or shank maintenance.

    1. Yellow Gold – 5 Years
    2. White Gold – 8 Years
    3. Platinum – 20 Years

    This is under normal wear and tear. Below, I have created a list of activities that unintentionally kills jewelry. If you want to maximize the life of your jewelry and delay repair work as long as possible, please be (unofficially) advised to remove your jewelry when doing the following:

    1)      Cleaning:  Many cleaning chemicals contain chlorine – which is terribly harmful to most metals by causing porosity and weakening prongs and shanks. Even all-natural cleaning agents can do damage to jewelry. While they may not necessarily harm metal, they can damage most gemstones that have much softer compositional properties than diamonds. No, this does not exempt you from performing household chores! When it is time to scrub and disinfect your home, remove the jewelry on your hands first! Unlike your skin, jewelry does not heal and regenerate after chemical exposure.

    2)      Swimming: Just like with cleaning, more leisurely activities like, a soak in the hot tub or a quick swim before dinner, will damage your jewelry because of the chemical exposure.

    -Furthermore, when you swim (even in fresh or salt water) your hands are exposed to cooler temperatures. When your hands are cold your fingers constrict, when your fingers constrict your rings become loose fitting, when your rings are loose they fall off!

    3)      Yard Work: We have all had blisters from raking, weeding, chopping, stacking, digging, and/or harvesting. Am I right? We have all seen what yard work does to our hands (and muscles!), imagine what it is doing to your jewelry on a microscopic level. Over time, you will do damage that will bring your ring to our repair shop. May it be a broken prong, a chipped stone, or a missing stone, you will need it repaired, and it will cost you money.

    4)      Hiking: One of my best friend’s engagement ring was purchased from me. A month after the proposal, she texted me saying her platinum was terribly scratched (and it was!).

    The conversation went something like this:

    Her: “You said platinum was durable.”

    Me: “You climbed a mountain with your ring on.”

    Need I say more? (Sorry, Karis. I use your active lifestyle as an example on a regular basis.)

    5)      Sleeping: This is a big one. The biggest, really. Folks, take your jewelry off before bed. You’re not as delicate of a sleeper as you think you are.

    You may think you sleep like this:

    But you really sleep like this:

    When you toss and turn you are susceptible of snagging prongs in your blankets and stretching/tangling your chains. There is only so much of this that your jewelry can take.

    Eventually, something is going to give and it is going to either need repair or replacement.

    6)      Gym: Kudos to all of you who work out. Really, you put my couch-potato self to shame.  I never damage my jewelry sitting on the couch. Neither will you. You will, however, damage your jewelry at the gym. Whether you are pumping iron, practicing your left JAB, or using the rowing machine (all things, I have never done in my life) you are putting serious strain on your rings. Those of you wearing rings with stones are at the most risk. FYI: Activity that causes your ring to be pressed into your hand or against something else, even if it’s only at the bottom, will bend your ring. It may not be evident right away, but when your ring bends it effects the structural integrity of the tension holding your gemstones in. They will become loose and gold work will be required to strengthen your ring again. You may even chip your stones, requiring replacement. Yes, diamonds are the least likely to chip, but they can and will if under significant strain or impact.

    7)      Carrying heavy loads: If you’re like me, you hate making two trips out to the car to bring in groceries. To maximize your efficiency, I’m sure you carry all 17 bags and a gallon of milk into the house in one trip. This will bend your ring and snag prongs catastrophically. Reread the FYI from point #6.


    Jewelry is precious, delicate and valuable. While it deserves to be shown off, it deserves to be treated carefully to maximize its beauty and longevity. Please remove your jewelry before engaging in the activities listed above – they are the most frequent culprits of jewelry damage!


    When the time comes, and you need repairs, Day’s Jewelers has the most professional, talented, meticulous, caring, certified and accredited jewelers in the industry. I have had the pleasure of working with most of them, I trust and respect them completely. You will too!




  • Top 3 Appraisal Tips from a GIA Graduate Gemologist

    darcy2-resized-600.jpgDarcy Good started her career at Day’s Jewelers seventeen years ago.  Since then she has earned her degree from the Gemological Institute of America as a Graduate Gemologist and is now the full-time appraiser at Day's Jewelers in Waterville. Darcy often gets asked 3 basic questions before performing an appraisal and in this exclusive post she'll give you the tools you need before you head to Antique Roadshow or any other appraiser with your precious items. 

    1. What does an appraisal cost?

    This is the most common question surrounding appraisals. Unfortunately quoting an accurate cost can be difficult because the fee depends on several factors.  First, every stone must go through an identification process.  For instance, diamond and moissanite will test the same on a diamond tester.  It is imperative to distinguish between the two.  Ruby and red spinel look the same; education and experience are necessary to make the separation.  Assigning a value to jewelry with large stones or custom jewelry, often times, requires research.  These are just a few of many examples.  Appraisal fees are usually between $45 and $200.  The appraiser you choose can give you a better idea of what an appraisal of your exact piece may cost.

    At Day's we offer free verbal appraisals to give you an approximate value. If you decide to have an official written appraisal for insurance or other purposes, the fees start at $40 per item and are adjusted from there depending upon the number of stones and research it will take to complete the appraisal.

    2. Why should I get an appraisal?

    Insurance Purposes: We work very hard to buy the things that are important to us. We insure our homes & cars because we know that it would be very difficult to replace those things if lost, damaged or destroyed. The same goes for our jewelry. Once a person has an appraisal, he or she can insure their jewelry by adding it to their homeowner’s policy for very little expense. Over time, our jewelry appreciates in value so it is important to have appraisals updated too.

    Selling: Perhaps you have a piece that you no longer wear. The sentimentality of jewelry can change when a relationship ends or styles come in and out of fashion. A appraisal will not only give you a benchmark for insurance purposes but it will also give you a suggested value if you are looking to sell the piece. An appraisal from a Gemologist you trust will give you the tools you need to negotiate the best price when you sell.

    3. How long does an appraisal take?

    How long an appraisal takes depends on the piece itself. I am able to determine an approximate value in a minute, but it can be a complicated process to complete an educated assessment. There are several value factors that need to be assessed when grading diamonds and colored stones. Every stone must go through an identification process and sometimes additional research is required.


    Have additonal appraisal questions?
    Ask Darcy at


  • New Head vs. Retips

    Most jewelers suggest that you bring your jewelry in every 6 months to be checked: cleaned, tightened up - like a spa treatment for your jewelry.

    However, sometimes when a ring is brought in for inspection it may be recommended that the item needs work done to it to help preserve the item.

    prong_setting_bnFor example, on a ring we do retips. What is a retip?: building up and "repairing" the pegs of metal holding the diamond (the prongs).  The prongs start to show wear and retipping them will bring the ring back to safe and stable condition.

    Retipping is something that will generally last for six months to a year before more wear begins to occur again.

    An alternative to retipping is putting on a new head. What is a new head?: A new head is when you replace all of the prongs that are holding the stone in place with new ones.

    Doing this is a long term fix; it can add another five to ten years to the ring. There are different options that can be done for a head that will also give more security and add to the  life span of the ring. For example, doing six prongs vs. four will add more security to the ring because you are adding an additional two prongs. Another option is doing gold or platinum for the head. Platinum will typically last twice as long as gold.

    These are just some of the things that might be found when having your jewelry inspected. This is why we suggest doing it every 6 months. Should you wait too long, you could risk ruining the jewelry or worse, loosing a stone. This can happen with normal wear and tear.

    Wearing particular pieces of jewelry is a great way to express your own personal style, and remember the special moments in your life. In order to make sure that your jewelry remains a part of who you are, and continues to keep your memories and cherished moments alive, it must be properly maintained.

    Always be sure to talk to a service specialist or goldsmith, they are there to assist you in making the right choices for your jewelry and what is best for you.


    Rebecca Bonney, Assistant Manager
    Auburn, Day's Jewelers 

    Learn more about Rebecca




  • What Does a Jeweler's Warranty Cover?

    rsemi3518_1After 20 years in the jewelry industry, one thing has never changed:  The confusion consumers have when it comes to warranty coverage.  It is really no surprise, however, as each jeweler decides what they will warranty on their own.  Multiple jewelers equal many different warranties.  Yet, despite this, there are some common items that appear in virtually all warranties.

    1.  They require the jewelry be inspected.  Virtually all jewelry warranties require the guest to return with the jewelry either annually or semi-annually so the item can be inspected for security of the gems, claps, ear nuts and the overall wear condition of the piece.  Most (but not all) jewelers will tighten any loose stones or make minor adjustments to the jewelry at this time at no charge to you.  Skipping the inspection generally voids the warranty.  Some jewelers, like Day's will reinstate the warranty upon making a current inspection of the jewelry.

    2.  You are responsible to keep the paperwork showing the inspection was completed.  The majority of jewelers do not keep records of what they have inspected.  As a rule, you will be given a form or folder that has a space for the jeweler to sign off that the inspection was completed, the date, and who did the inspection.  You should store any such items in a secure area of your home as the form is usually needed for any warranty work to be done at no charge.

    3.  Normal wear and abusive wear are not covered.  Jewelers generally do not cover any damage or repairs that occur with the normal wear of the jewelry or any abusive wear.  Generally, guests confuse abusive with being extremely rough with the jewelry.  This is sometimes the case, but not always.  Gold and other precious metals are soft and can shape easily with wear.  However, even gold alloys have their limits.  Pushed enough, they will crack and break as well as any other metal.  An example of abusive wear would be a crack in the ring due to a guest misshaping the ring to an oval shape.

    As for normal wear, gold and other precious metals wear down with time. The crown on a diamond solitaire, for example, will last between 5-10 years and then will need to be replaced.  Most jewelers do charge for this.

    4.  Defects in craftsmanship or materials are what the warranty does cover.  This is a tough one for the consumer.  Jewelry is an unknown to most people not in the industry and unless you know what you are looking for it is impossible to know what is truly defective.  Understand that most jewelers actually WILL stand up and take responsibility for a defective item or job.  Why?  They want you happy and they know they can return the item for a remake or refund from their vendor for a mere shipping charge if it is indeed defective. In essence, when they tell you it is not a warranty covered item, they are telling you they have no grounds to request a refund or exchange from their vendor.

    jmlogo-tagline_clr5.  Loss and disappearance or not covered.  Jewelers are not insurance agents and cannot help you if the item goes missing.  Day's recommends you insure your jewelry through your private agent or through a policy from Jewelers Mutual Insurance.

    6.  Repairs done by someone other than where you bought the item void the warranty.  Jewelers will not cover work done on their jewelry done by someone other than themselves.  You will need to have any repairs or alterations done where you bought the jewelry.  Otherwise you will have to enquire as to whether or not the jeweler doing the work will now cover the item.  Most jewelers do have a limited warranty for repairs they do, but it is generally not as comprehensive as a standard warranty.

    7.  They are generally free.
    Most jewelers offer some form of this warranty as a free service.  What they do vary slightly, but the common theme is they are free of charge with the purchase.  For example:  Day's Jewelers provides free stone tightening, clasp tightening, ear nut tightening for earrings, cleaning, polishing, and a once a year re-rhodium for white gold rings purchased from Day's Jewelers.

    These are the primary commonalities with jewelry warranties.  There are also extended warranties that exist in the market as well.  These generally cost a percentage of the purchase and can cover additional items such as stone chipping and lifetime sizing.  Beware of these warranties.  They do cover more, but have a limited lifespan, cost money out of pocket, and have very strict guidelines about inspections.  The most common pitfall is the inspections.  If you miss one...even by 1 day, the warranty becomes void and you cannot reinstate it.  I recommend you avoid the extended warranty unless it states in writing it can be reinstated if a date is missed.  It will save you money and frustration in the long run.

    In the end, the warranty is only one piece of caring for your jewelry.  Proper insurance and a good relationship with a jeweler you trust are equally important for the longevity and protection of your most precious memories.

    About the Blogger: 


    mark-poulin2-web20111Mark, Store Manager,
    Auburn, Day's Jewelers

    -Diamond council of America Certified Diamondologist
    -Jewelers of America Certified


    Why Day’s?
    -He loves working with customers and teaching them about jewelry.

    Learn more about Mark...



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If for any reason you are not 100% satisfied with your purchase within 30 days of receipt, you may return any merchandise that has not been altered, engraved or customized for a refund, credit or exchange. Merchandise returned must be in its original condition.


All orders are fully insured and require a signature at time of delivery. Each item is cleaned, polished and inspected before it is wrapped and shipped to you. For engravings and ring sizing, please add an additional 2-3 business days to your order. Special orders or customizations may take 3-4 weeks. Please click here for full shipping information.


Day's Jewelers requires suppliers to provide a written warranty, for every diamond purchased, that it was acquired from non-conflict sources. Furthermore, as a certified member of the Responsible Jewellery Council, Day's is committed to supporting and promoting the highest level of social, ethical and environmental responsibility in our communities and in the areas of the world where our products are sourced. Learn more...


If for any reason you are not 100% satisfied with your purchase within 30 days of receipt, you may return any merchandise that has not been altered, engraved or customized for a refund, credit or exchange. Merchandise returned must be in its original condition.


Your jewelry purchased from Day's Jewelers is warranted for a lifetime against defects in materials and craftsmanship. To be eligible for this warranty, your piece of jewelry must be inspected at any Day's store at least once every six months. If you should live in an area where there is no Day's store located, we would be happy to recommend a reputable jeweler to perform the required semi-annual inspections. Day's also offers a low cost extended care plan that covers normal wear and tear of items not deemed as defective.


Day's adheres to an everyday low price policy so you can always shop knowing you’re getting the best price possible from an authorized retailer.


Day's adheres to an everyday low price policy so you can always shop knowing you’re getting the best price possible from an authorized retailer.