Packaging is one thing must consumers never think about when purchasing anything. With most items you would order it is simple, just put it in a box, tape it, label it and send it on its way. That's not the same with all products though, especially hydro film.
When it comes to hydro film and it's quality, there is more than just "Does it hydrate" or "Does it activate". The quality of the hydro film starts in it's production, but does not end at how we (the retailer) claims to store it. Lets be honest here, almost all suppliers state that the film is stored in a climate controlled facility to protect from moisture and all that. We even say that, it's true that we do but I will touch on that in a minute. The quality of the film (from a suppliers control) ends when you receive the film, then it is upon you to retain it's quality.
Even though most films (of the same design) are the same film, it does not mean that the quality is the same. Just as some retailers of hydro film package and ship with different standards or of different qualities, the same goes for the suppliers we (retailers) buy from. Some retailers buy purely by the lowest price and others such as us buy from reliable suppliers that always maintain their film, package their film and ship their film in the highest qualities. This ensures we have quality film from the starting line. For an example, years ago I tested a new supplier by purchasing a very small order to see what the quality was and how they shipped their product. They literally rolled up a newspaper and then rolled the film around the newspaper. WHAT A MISTAKE....
Now comes the maintaining of the quality. As mentioned before, almost all retailers state the "stored in a climate controlled facility". Well lets be real here, unless you are running your business out of your parents garage then it is most likely "Climate Controlled". It means nothing more than the facility has A/C and heat. Our film is stored in poly bags, rolled on tubes, less than 40% humidity and between 70-75°F (depending on time of year) all year long. As much as I would love to open the windows and get fresh air blowing through here, its not an option.
Now comes the part that most buyers forget to think about, shipping. Think about this the nest time you look at hydro film pricing. If most all retailers are at about the same price but one or two or selling a lot cheaper, why are they so much cheaper?? Now I'm not talking about them having a weekend sale or something like that. I mean that they are like 30, 40 or even 50% cheaper year round. Either (A) they aren't really trying to make much profit and like working for pennies - or - (B) something somewhere is being cut on cost. Maybe they are buying that hydro film on the suppliers local newspaper or maybe they are cutting cost by cutting corners in shipping.
In talking with a customer last week, they told me about how they purchased some film from a seller on eBay. Like most shoppers he purchased by price. What he received was a square meter of film (38.5"x38.5") folded up and stuffed in an 9"x12" envelope. That is why he was calling us, to place an order because the film was creased like crazy from the other seller and their choice in packaging.
When buying film, always make sure to find out and don't be afraid to ask the following..
- What they claim "climate controlled facility" to be? Temperature, Humidity...
- How do they maintain and/or store their stock?
- Do they roll the film (use pipes) for shipping or just fold it up and ship in an envelope?
There is more that can control the quality of film from a retailers responsibility, but these are the basics.