My husband and I have been ordering from LEE VALLEY for many, many years... Woodworking Tools, Garden Tools, Kitchen Tools and other assorted items both for our personal use and as gifts.
Their Customer Service is "second-to-none". The quality of most of their products is excellent. Their prices are very fair and they also have many items made just for them. My husband has purchased many woodworking tools made (or private labeled) for Lee Valley by well-known companies and paid much less than he would have from the "Name" manufacturer for the same quality.
In fact, I ordered quite a few woodworking tools for my husband this past Christmas (of course he hinted to Santa that he wanted several of them by marking the catalog!).
We also placed another order for the two of us after Christmas that we just received last week. Two of the items are backordered and will be shipped (with no shipping charge) as soon as they have them back in stock.
We order right after Christmas almost every year because they offer free shipping (with a minimum purchase).
Okay, I've gone on long enough. By now I'm sure you've gotten the impression that we LOVE this company...and you'd be right!
So glad to have this forum for company reviews! Anyhow, I've ordered numerous times from Lee Valley and have always been pleased. Their products are great and prices fair.
bbetv North Glengarry , ON (Zone 5a) (11 reviews) February 5, 2011
No matter what the order, I am always satisfied by my purchases and experiences at Lee Valley. I wrote to let them know that something had not arrived and wwith my order on a Saturday night at 22:42 I received a response that evening at 22:54!!! Confirming that it would be sent by Monday. At the time I sent that email I let them know that the garlic crusher that I had ordered 1 YEAR PREVIOUS had broke within 2 uses as well as the head flashlight never really working, but I had never bothered to write /not been able to get to the store, but I just wanted to let them know in case this was a frequent problem with these products. Well, would you believe that customer service replied (that 22:54 email I spoke of) that I would be sent replacements for those items!! Wow! That is exceptional service!
They are always soooo nice at the (Ottawa)store.
If you have a problem with anything bought from them I feel that they will always try and resolve the situation in such a way that the client feels satisfied!
manuretea Medina, OH (Zone 5b) (10 reviews) March 28, 2010
Posted on August 5, 2005, updated March 28, 2010
Wonderful company to do business with. They have locations in the U.S. and Canada. Their products are high quality---great prices---expedient service. They even have Sneeboer hand forged garden tools! On August 5th, 2005, manuretea added the following:
They also carry a stainless hori-hori knife(weeder).On March 28th, 2010, manuretea added the following:
I can't say enough good things about the merchandise quality, price and service from Lee Valley. I have tried several of the hand forged garden tools from two of their manufacturers, mostly recently the spork. They add immense ease and pleasure to gardening!
funtomatoes Douglasville, GA (6 reviews) February 1, 2010
I have ordered from this company many times for several years, and have almost always been pleased. Most of their products are high quality and reasonably priced. Sometimes they will carry a product that may not be the best, but it will be a good buy for the money. Customer service has been very helpful when I have had an ureasonable (in my opinion) request. I will order from them again.
yocsmotel San Antonio, TX (1 review) September 10, 2009
I bought the OUR BOARDING HOUSE (Major Hoople) book and it is a sheer delight. These classic Gene Ahern comics from 1927 show the Major in his prime--and he had a run that lasted into the early 1980's. Any classic comics lover would be thrilled to get this one--it is good to the last drop!
DonnaMack Elgin, IL (Zone 5a) (51 reviews) August 7, 2009
I have made four separate purchases from this terrific company in the last year. I actually switched from another company because the quality of their merchandise is unsurpassed. I placed two orders for peony rings and supports, a dandelion digger, and a book. All were promptly delivered, but the best surprise was being offered incredible values while checking out. A 3 piece Fiskars tool set that was originally sold for $70 was acquired at $19.95. Just one of the tools (a great 15" pruner) was offered elsewhere for $40-50. It's my favorite garden tool. The peony rings and supports are the only ones that can support my very mature peonies - great design and construction. I couldn't find any at hardware stores or other catalogues that worked.
I recommend getting on their mailing list. I had wanted to buy the hardbound update of Robert Osbourne's Hardy Roses, which is being sold on other sites for $49 to $79. I looked everywhere for a better price. Much to my surprise, it was offered it at $16, plus shipping, which was about $6.00. I couldn't believe it was the same book, but it arrived yesterday.
I had always regarded Lee Valley as the champagne of garden tool companies, and assumed it was too expensive. It's the champagne, all right, but at prices that make it quite drinkable. I highly recommend them.
TOO BAD YOU DON'T HAVE A RATING ABOVE POSITIVE. I PLACED AN ORDER ON SATURDAY AND MY ORDER WAS DELIVERED ON THE FOLLOWING WEDNESDAY. THEY HAVE VERY GOOD QUALITY TOOLS. THEY ALSO HAVE FRIENDLY, COMPETENT STAFF.
I am very pleased with my first shopping experience at Lee Valley Tools. The web site checkout was smooth and the shipping was lightning fast! I would recommend this company.
CarloInTX Denton, TX (Zone 8a) (3 reviews) May 31, 2009
Ordered three small items on May 22, 2009. Received all items as described on May 30. The experience was generally OK, but I was dismayed that (as another user experienced) the shipping charges were not given until after the transaction was completed. Although reasonable, they really should be displayed before the transaction is finalized and the card is charged. I will notify the company.On May 31st, 2009, CarloInTX added the following:
Lee Valley says that there should be a screen summarizing the charges including the shipping before finalizing the purchase. I sure didn't see it.On August 23rd, 2009, CarloInTX added the following:
I made a second order from them today, and did see the shipping amount this time. It certainly doesn't jump out at you, but it is there. You have to fill out everything first, then just before the payment you see how much it is.
joannabanana Calgary, AB (Zone 3a) (4 reviews) February 10, 2009
I have enjoyed the catalog and good quality products for years, but now I have lost a bit of my appeal for Lee Valley
Buyer beware: 3Tier HI Floralight
I received this unit, with the special bulbs, for Christmas 2006. It is the most expensive gift I had ever received. Since I like to start a lot of seeds, this unit is awesome. One problem, the quality of the fixture is questionable. For the cost of this unit, I am very disappointed with Lee Valley. The 4-bulb HI Floralight is the one I have. This year the unit is a whopping $749 + GST and the bulbs are extra @ 12 full spectrum bulbs for $179 + GST.That's $975 complete. Holy Smokers!
So, got it for Christmas 2006. Started it up Feb 2007. everything worked great, heavy duty construction. Bulbs were to last 10 years for home gardener. All was impressive. I have used it for 3 months at 16 hours per day in 2007. I have the fixtures plugged into a good surge protector and also a timer.
Feb 2008- started it up again and one fixture had a faulty set of 2 bulbs (middle 2 bulbs would not light, bulbs were good). I took the entire fixture back to Lee Valley and they replaced the fixture on the spot. Again used it 3 months at 16 hours per day for 2008
This year, another ballast is not functioning (the outer bulbs of one fixture) The bulbs are fine and I had tested it by switching them with the ones that lit up, so it is the fixture or ballast. So, took it back to Lee Valley. The Customer rep (with an arrogant attitude) told me they will only allow returns within 30 days. No warranty. I will need to buy a new fixture through a special order through Lee Valley. Oh and the manufacture is chosen by Lee Valley to build the Floralight brand so it it Lee Valley that you need to deal with. They have switched manufacturers recently. No offer to replace the faulty part in the fixture. Unacceptable! I wasn't getting anywhere with the pompous rep, so I asked to speak to the Manager. You would think that a product that costs that much would be have some warranty. the manager did not come out, apparently she would look into it and see if there would be something she could special order. Again, I would probably have to pay for it, since the unit was bought in 2006.
The documents that came with the unit has the manufacturer listed as Floralight. Phone number no longer in service. I called the Lee Valley 1-800 # and told my sad story. I was told that they have changed manufacturers and have a new mfg building the units. I questioned why they have the same brand Floraight in their most recent catalog. Lee Valley gets a mfg to build the Floralight units for them, so it is Lee Valley that you need to go thru for service. The rep from the 1-800 line is contacting the new mfg to find out if there is a replacement spare part or entire new fixture option. Because it is a different mfg, not all spare parts may be available. The new fixtures should fit in the old stand, hopefully. She said it would be resolved at no cost to me.
Anyways, we will see how this pans out. I am really disappointed with the way the Calgary store handled this. Perhaps some of the staff should go on a customer service training class before they are allowed to stand behind that counter.
I've ordered tons of garden tools, hardware and gift items from Lee Valley and I've always been pleased with their great products. (We garden in heavy clay soil.) So I was pretty surprised this spring when their lifetime guaranteed transplant spade broke right off the handle! Gave them a call, and since I'd mentioned how it was a busy time in the garden, they sent off the new spade immediately and provided me with the prepaid label to mail back the broken one in the box the new one came in, saving me the trouble of finding something to fit the old one in to mail. As always, great service from a great company.
Maybe I just had high expectations for this company, after seeing all the good reviews here. But I had more trouble with this order than I should have.
First, I was never informed of the shipping charges. They were reasonable, but they were never disclosed, either during the online ordering process (which was a pain), or in the two confirmation emails I received afterward.
Second, the quality of the items received was less than I expected for the price. Better than what you'd find at a discount store, but I could save money by buying equivalent products at a local garden center.
Third, I ordered an "ergonomic" shovel that is actually more difficult to use and requires more bending (and therefore more back pain) than the $5 special I bought pre-rusted at Wal-Mart. It's very sturdy, but so useless for digging that I can't imagine using it for anything other than prying boulders, which they specifically tell you not to do. I'm going to attempt to return it.
GardenGirl81 Newburg, PA (Zone 6b) (2 reviews) March 31, 2008
I ordered 3 different sets of tools, and they arrived very fast. I went out and used them the first chance i got! They are good Quality and a fair price for nice tools.
I ordered the rooter pot system. Lee Valley tools is a grade above just about every online/ cataloge company on the net. They have great products, service, shipping and are a outstanding company. They offer products not found any where else and the product is what it is advertised as. I highly recommend buying from this company.
Lee Valley is the heat. Value is good. Quality is good. Service is good. Every time a catalog comes, I pick out about $1000 worth of stuff and then get my wife to talk me down from it. I've ordered all sorts of thing from them over a period of several years: books, pruning tools, knives, coat hooks, furniture slides, hose couplers, gifts of various sorts. They're a wonderful company to deal with.
grafter Lenoir City, TN (3 reviews) March 12, 2008
I have ordered and used both gardening and woodworking supplies from Lee Valley for several years and have been please with each transaction. The only disappointment came with a set of woodworking plans which included materials which are almost impossible to find where I live but that may be due to conversion from that pesky metric system. Their "stuff" is first class. The self-watering seed starters work very well. ' good company.
I think this company is great. I have ordered a number of times from them and recently purchased a number of gardening items including a hand and wheel hoe. Everything I've ever gotten from them is top quality and they ship very quickly. I would highly recommend them.
jimh6278 Salt Lake City, UT (3 reviews) February 19, 2008
I donít know where Zarebethís comments came from. Everybody has to occasionally raise prices and there is no way they will use old catalogs to price their items. Lee Valley still has high quality items at good prices.
I recently bought coir pots at a much lower price than I could find elsewhere. I received them within 5 days of placing the order. Lee Valley is still selling copper mesh in 100í rolls for a reasonable price despite the rising cost of copper. Check out the price of electrical wire at Home Depot.
This is a very good company with excellent products and very good customer support. I have never been disappointed. They are in my top 5.
DreamOfSpring Charleston, SC (Zone 9a) (24 reviews) February 17, 2008
If you read this, you are likely looking to determine if in ordering from Lee Valley you can expect to receive quality products that meet the catalog description and are delivered in a timely manner and backed by excellent customer support. From my experience with this company the answer to all of these things is a resounding, "Yes!". In addition to all of this the company appears to take a socially responsible stance regarding the manner in which its products will be used.
I have placed a number of orders with Lee Valley over the past few years. They are on my Top 2 list when looking for tools and garden products. They have earned my trust and respect. I have never been dissatisfied with a product or transaction. I find that they tend to carry a high grade of tools. Put simply, I have nothing but the accolades for this company.
In addition to their excellent product quality and service, on a recent order, I noticed something which I think speaks volumes about the tendency of this vendor to care about more than just the sale and to act in a socially responsible manner. I had placed an order for a wire cage (live) trap. When the item arrived it included a cautionary statement (added by the vendor) detailing the risks of trapping and relocating females of various wildlife species as females may be have helpless babies waiting for them somewhere. The note went on to advise the buyer to check with local wildliffe officials for more information as to the rules in their area and the best time to consider relocating females. I was impressed by this action on the part of the vendor. They could easily have just sold me the cage and figured what I did with it wasn't their problem.
I just noticed that Lee Valley was removed from the top 30. After 1 negative rating? Others on the list have at least one if not many more negatives. What gives? How about Gardens North? It also has a perfect track record - but not on the top 30? A pattern?On February 16th, 2008, egm added the following:
After my rating it seems to be back on the top 30 - never mind ;O)
Zarebeth Circle Pines, MN (Zone 4b) (2 reviews) February 2, 2008
I used to love this company, and have placed many orders with them in the past - and I have always been happy with the quality - I have NO complaints about that.
However, the prices in the new catalog have gone up substantially. I had not received it yet and there was no expiration date on the catalog I did have. They did not offer to honor the older pricing, and instead sent me an extremely condescending email on how their costs have gone up so I was basically out of luck. This catalog evidently expired, without any notice, YESTERDAY. I'm sorry, but for 1 day any customer service person worth their salt would have at least offered a compromise.
I will not be ordering from this company again.On February 23rd, 2008, Zarebeth added the following:
1. As far as I am concerned, a catalog has not expired until you receive a new one, or there is an expiration date on the one you have. It was the winter 2008 catalog. It is still winter, and there was no expiration date on it. I had not yet received the Spring 2008 catalog - it came a week after my experience.
2. The price on the item I wanted to order went up more than 25% from last year. What else do you know of has gone up that much besides gasoline? They have the right to raise their prices as much as they want, and I have the right to go elsewhere when they do - and I ended up doing just that.
3. Lee obviously doesn't care enough about my negative feedback to contact me and find out what the problem was. I tried very hard to give them a chance to work something out with me. But they weren't interested in even trying. I was planning on placing a substantial order, too, and told them so. I am in customer service, and the correct response is "You are a valued customer, what can we do to make this right?", not "I am sorry you feel that way, but we will be happy to remove you from our mailing list." I would have been happy to compromise.
After spending hundreds of dollars with them over the last several years, I would hope for more than just the brush off I got.
THAT is where my review is coming from. I repeat, I do not have a problem with their merchandise - they carry good quality stuff. I am only relaying an experience that upset me a great deal. Maybe she was just having a bad day, but she took it out on me, and that was just wrong. I have been a good customer for many years, and maybe I am wrong, but I thought that should carry more weight than it obviously did.
I have purchased many gardening and workshop gadgets from Lee Valley over the past two years. I have never had a problem with an order. Their shipping costs are very reasonable, and my orders arrive within days of being placed on-line. My favorite items are the 10-year gardening journal and the boxes of watchmaker's cases. I use the cases for storing/organizing the many seeds that I collect.
I'm always happy when a new Lee Valley catalogue arrives.
Lee Valley is a fantastic company. They will send a free catalog on request- definitely worth looking into. They are consistently reliable, have excellent customer service, and extremely well-built and innovative products. HIGHLY recommended!
REXTHELAB Rancho Santa Margarita, CA (16 reviews) September 9, 2007
Wow!! Didn't expect a delivery on Saturday. Very timely delivery and vey well packed. Will order from these folk again.
They seem to have every you need for a gardening supply company.
kittshouse Lynn, MA (Zone 5a) (4 reviews) August 27, 2007
This company is awesome. I placed an order for some propagating supplies and received them within 4 days of placing my order. When a 'kit' I ordered had a piece missing, I e-mailed them with the problem. I nearly fainted when I received a reply within five minutes. Yes, you read that right, 5 mins. They apologized and said they would send the missing piece the next day. Well, I figured it would take another 4 days, and didn't think about it until it arrived the next day via 'overnight' express. What can you say except, Exceptional Customer Service! And their prices are very competitive. I will be ordering from them again with no hesitation.
dlefferts Agawam, MA (Zone 6a) (26 reviews) July 29, 2007
One of the best online companies I have ever dealt with. With in three days had exactly what I ordered. Would recommend them as one of the best!!!!
I've had nothing but good experiences with Lee Valley. The one tool which broke was replaced quickly and with zero hassle on my part. I'd recommend them highly.
LeeAnne151 Portland, OR (11 reviews) July 19, 2007
Ordered a kitchen compost bucket and some other items from Lee Valley Tools. They had an economical option of plastic rather than the expensive stainless and crockery ones I had previously found. Who needs fancy for under the sink?
They have a huge selection and great prices and customer service. I will order again and will make a point to shop their store when next in Vancouver BC. It was closed when I was there last year on a Sunday and I couldn't make it back during the week.
We've placed large orders with Lee Valley for the past few years. Excellent service- quick delivery, we've never had any sort of problem and customer service is wonderful to talk to. We've gotten all our seed starting and other gardening products from h ere- if only they carried live plants we'd never have to order from anywhere else!!
Over the years, I've bought various things ranging from cabinetry to tools. I had a tool break that was guaranteed and on trying to replace it encountered quite simply the best customer service I've ever had. I promptly received a new tool in the mail, a mailer to return the broken item, and courteous service all around. Why can't more companies recognize that treating customers this well is a strong business model? I love this place.
mad4roses Georgetown, TX (Zone 8a) (25 reviews) April 11, 2007
I ordered a wall trellis kit from them a couple of weeks ago. My order was promptly shipped and I had it within a week. The trellis was easy to install and is extremely sturdy. Excellent product and great service.
honeybunch stokes bay, ON (Zone 5b) (1 review) March 27, 2007
We have been dealing with Lee Valley Tools for over 30 years..my husband as a cabinet maker and me as a cook and gardener. I now have my own zester....my hubby got it for me after I was continually borrowing his.
There is absolutely nothing bad that I can say about this Company...from the very first hand written letter of apology from Leonard Lee about a back order, to today's modern usage of the web site...this company is all about quality products and service.
The list of gardening products that we have bought from them is far too lengthy to list....and not one complaint from us.
Great company. They are prompt in shipping and their products are of great quality. I often find that when I go to their site to purchase one thing I end up buying something else too as they just have so many unique, great little gadgets. Excellent service, prompt shipping and great quality, I recommend them often to others and will continue ordering from them myself!
crabbybill South Bend, IN (Zone 5b) (1 review) February 23, 2007
Lee Valley's catalog and website have complete discriptions of their products. They have garden items you're not going to find in ordinary sources. I found their hat fits by fat head. I don't mind letting folks know that Lee Valley is a great place to do business.
declfi Fenton, MO (Zone 6b) (30 reviews) February 22, 2007
I buy a lot on line and have about 20 ratings I have made on garden watchdog . I have to say that Lee Valley Tools has the most outstanding customer service I have ever dealt with.
Nigella Wilmington United States (23 reviews) February 21, 2007
Good selection of garden supplies and fast delivery. If I need something new I always check their site first. I had only good experience with them.
I wish they carried more arbors when I was looking for them in the winter.