September Manufacturing Update

September Manufacturing Update

If you’ve been following along with  our updates, you’ll know that we sent out our first pallet of  Instafloss. This exciting milestone has given us the opportunity to test  our shipping and packaging methods and deliver the world’s first  multi-jet flosser.

The rollout of the first pallet of  units was… not up to our standards. About 12% of people had an issue  that required the unit to be shipped back to us for repair — and we’re  pretty sure these units were on the bottom of the pallet, which we’ll  explain below.

Reservoir Anti-Leak Valves Damaged by Shipping

The most commonly reported problem is  with the “Reservoir Anti-Leak Valve”. This part keeps water from flowing  out when the reservoir is being filled in your sink. Or at least, it  should.

Steady stream of water.

But some of them aren’t doing their  job. The reason for this is pretty straightforward: if the valve is kept  open all the time, eventually the soft silicone material relaxes. Then,  when you lift it up, the valve does not snap closed. When the  Instafloss was shipped, it was stacked vertically, so all the units were  upright. But that meant the weight of the boxes above were pushing on the Instaflosses below, so the valve was pushed open for several weeks.

The solution for anyone who received  an anti-leak valve like this is also pretty straightforward. Remove the  valve and let it relax, then reinsert. Performance should be greatly  improved.

Of course, the simple solution does not help all the people who have now had a bad experience.

To alleviate this issue, we will stack instafloss sideways.

To ensure future shipments arrive without issue, we need to do a crush test first. This orientation is weaker and there are more layers, so we’re going to be very careful about testing this.

That was the biggest issue. The next  most common is a failure of the handle to hold onto the mouthpiece.  You’ll recognize this as something that Ralf talked about last month, as  something we designed a test for, and went through a lot of trouble to  diagnose failures.

We are extremely heartbroken about  that. Our best guess is that because QC procedures were still evolving  with the first units, a small batch of failures were accidentally  grabbed and used in ‘good’ units. To all of you who suffered from this,  we are so sorry. Everyone who has written to us about this has received a  shipping label for us to fix that issue and return the unit.

Unanticipated Usage Resulting in Small Mouthpiece Leak

While a humorous concept, unanticipated usage doesn’t refer  to you surprising the Instafloss by entering the bathroom without  knocking first. Instead, some users have reported leaking from the mouthpiece when the mouthpiece is left below the water line on the reservoir.

This occurs when the mouthpiece is left below the water level in the reservoir for an extended time. We’re  calling this the “siphon effect” because it's occurring due to the  effect of the siphon. (Truly we are the most creative at naming things!)

In our testing, users would first fill up the  reservoir, then pick the handle up, then floss, so this never became a  problem. However, after shipping a full pallet of units, we recognize  that there are some users who fill the reservoir up and then leave the  handle attached without flossing for a while.

While this is not an issue at all if you use  Instafloss after filling the reservoir, we do want to support those who  want to use the unit differently. Our preliminary analysis has shown  that supporting this usage will be tricky:

  • Our hose manufacturer is uncertain if they  can change the shape of the hose so this does not occur; it was actually  extremely difficult to produce.
  • Changing the handle is next to impossible at this time as three parts would need entirely new molds.
  • Currently we are looking at ways to  mass-manufacture mouthpieces with a longer tube. This option can be  pretty fast depending on the technology, but we need to understand the  costs first.

Ultimately we think this boils down to an  overly simplified manual. We tried to make the manual as slim as  possible so that people could read it quicker and get flossing right  away, but we feel we may need to revise the manuals moving forward to  emphasize the following:

Use the instafloss immediately after filling/do  not leave the instafloss filled. Leaving it filled will not only cause  the slow mouthpiece leak, but may also cause the reservoir anti-leak  issue to crop up again.

Rare/Minor Issues

Lastly, a small number of people received  units that either did not turn on, turned on but the motor didn’t pump,  or experienced a gear failure immediately. These are problems we will  happily repair, and hopefully new QC procedures will help keep these occurrences very rare.

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Wow – that was a very thorough addressing of the issues you have faced – well done!
Instafloss replied:
Thank you very much, Robert!

We look forward to delivering your unit :)

With Smiles, The Instafloss Team

Robert Wilder

Where do we find our pledge/contribution number if we didn’t keep original email.
Instafloss replied:
Hi Barbara,

I’ve just sent you an email with the information you need. Let me know if there’s anything else I can do for you!

With Smiles, The Instafloss Team

Jennifer Barber

I don’t know my contribution # can u help me this????
Instafloss replied:
Hello Luann,

Thanks for your comment :)

I’ve just sent you an email with all the information you need.

With Smiles, The Instafloss Team

Luann Daleandro

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