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Frequently Asked Questions

Core Values

What are “Core Values” brands?
You want to feel good about the brands you’re bringing into your business. We understand, so we’re highlighting companies that make social or environmental practices an integral part of their core values. Good deeds make for good news, which is why we’re going to share it with you.

Brand initiatives that qualify for Core Values include, but aren’t limited to, a staunch commitment to being cruelty-free, vegan, organic, fair trade, charitable, or eco-friendly.
Look for this information on a brand’s page to see how they’re making the world a better place.

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What does “Created with Care” mean?
Before you invest in a product, we invest our time. Created with Care means that you can be certain that social and environmental claims have been substantiated by our team. Some of these claims may include cruelty-free, vegan, organic, or natural.
Look for these positive attributes in the product description.

Order Process

How do I log in?
If you are new to the site, you can register for ordering by using the “Log In” link in the upper right corner of each page.

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How do I place an order?
If registered, you can use the “Log In” button in the upper right corner of each page. Once logged in, you’ll be able to add items to your shopping cart.

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When I try to check out, I'm asked to log in. Why?
You must register with universalcompanies.com and complete our professional verification process before purchasing from our website.

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I tried to check out and the item in my shopping cart disappeared. What happened?
Items will remain in your shopping cart for 7 days; after that time the items will disappear if not ordered.

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The item I want is out of stock. What do I do now?
If an item you’re looking for is out of stock, a display message will inform you that it is backordered and give you the estimated ship date for that item. You may still add the item to your cart, and you will not be charged until it ships.

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Can I change or cancel my order once it is placed?
Once an order is placed, it cannot be cancelled or changed.

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Can I enter multiple promotion codes?
Yes, you can, but each code must be entered individually. Enter the code, click “Apply,” and then repeat the code you are redeeming. (Note: Some codes are limited to call-in orders only.)

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What is the cutoff time for order fulfillment?
Most orders received by 2 p.m. EST will ship the same day.

Can international orders be placed online?
Orders placed on the website can only be shipped to customers in the continental United States. For questions regarding international orders, please call us at 800.558.5571.

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Do you offer financing terms?
Yes! Find out more here.

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How do I know if I need to pay sales tax?
Sales tax will be added to orders deliver to select states. Currently, we are required to collect applicable sales tax in the following states: AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, FL, GA, HI, IL, MA, MD, MI, MS, NC, NJ, NV, NY, OH, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, WA, WI, and VA.

Payment Information

Is it safe to enter my credit card information online?
Yes!

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What forms of payment are accepted online?
We accept Visa®, MasterCard®, American Express®, and Discover®.

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Do you accept international credit cards?
Yes, if they are the ones listed above.

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When will my card be charged for items I order?
We authorize for the full balance when you check out and settle the charge when the item(s) ship.

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When I try to place my order, I get an error message stating that there has been an authorization failure. What went wrong?
This message means your card has been declined. If you receive such a notice, please contact your issuing bank for further information.

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Do I have the option to store or not store my credit card information?
You can store your credit card information.

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If I store my credit card information, will I be asked to enter the CVC code again?
No.

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Why was there a $1 transaction on my credit card?
If an item is on backorder your card will be authorized for $1 just to confirm that the card is in good standing.

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Why am I seeing multiple charges for the same transaction on my card?
If could be a typographical error in the order and the charge should clear out within 2-3 business days. You may see a pending charge and a settlement; the pending will clear in 1-2 business days.

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How long will you save my credit card information?
If you haven't used the card in 6 months it will be removed from the credit card processor's database.

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Shipping Information

Do you ship internationally?
Yes. When placing an order for international delivery, please call Universal Companies at 800.558.5571 or email info@universalcompanies.com.

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Do you ship to P.O. or A.P.O. boxes?
We only ship to physical street address.

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What are lead times?
A lead time is the shortest to longest date that a manufacturer will need to make/ship an item to a customer.

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What does DS mean on my packing slip? (I did not actually receive this item.)
DS stands for a Drop Ship item. This means that an item will ship directly from the manufacturer.

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Returns & Exchanges

What is your return policy?
-Return any product* in new condition and appropriate for resale within 45 days of purchase for a prompt, courteous refund.
-After 45 days, return any product* in new condition and appropriate for resale for a refund, less a 20% restocking fee.
-Items returned to Universal Companies after 90 days will not be accepted for return or returned to you.

*EXCEPTIONS: copyrighted materials, HAZMAT items, custom orders, screens, drop shipped items, and equipment without a return authorization approval from our Customer Service Department

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How long will it take to get my refund?
Please allow 14 days for credit to be processed and issued once returned items are received.

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What if my shipment is damaged?
Please keep all packing materials until items have been fully inspected. Contact Customer Service at 1.800.558.5571 within 72 hours to report damage.

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Something's missing from my order. What should I do?
Items missing from your order must be reported missing within 48 hours of receipt for replacement.

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The equipment I ordered isn't working. Who do I call?
For non-functioning equipment, contact Customer Service at 1-800-558-5571 within 72 hours of receipt of your order.

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How do I return something I ordered to Universal Companies?
Here are 4 easy steps to returning your product:

  • Inspect your return: Make sure that all items are un-opened and in the original packaging. All pieces, parts, printed materials, and accessories must be included for the return. If your return has been opened or is not in the original packaging contact customer service at 800-558-5571.
  • Include a copy of your invoice or picking ticket in the return. This expedites the return process. If you do not have a copy of your invoice or picking ticket contact customer service at 800-558-5571. If applicable, include RMA or RA number.
  • Package your return to ensure no damage upon return shipment. If items are received damaged there will be no credit issued.
  • Returns should be addressed to:

Universal Companies
18260 Oak Park Dr.
Abingdon, VA 24210
Attn: Returns Department
NOTE: Return shipping charges are the responsibility of the customer.

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How do I exchange something I purchased from Universal Companies?
Fill out the Exchange Form on the back of the packing slip that came with your order. Then simply follow the return packing and shipping guidelines above and include the Exchange Form with your return.

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Information & Reviews

I saw an item on the website, and now it has disappeared. Where did it go?
If the item has disappeared, then it has either been discontinued or it is out of stock and we do not have an estimated date for new stock arrival.

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I can't find the item I am looking for. How do I search for it?
If you know the item number, the quickest way to locate it is with the free form text box located in the upper right side of each web page.

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How do I rate and review a product?
You must be logged into your account to be able to leave a product review. Navigate to the product page and locate the section of tabs under the product information and "Product Options & Purchase." Click on the "Reviews" tab to rate and review the product. For more information about our review process, please see our Terms and Conditions of Use.

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Do you have a catalog?
Yes, and you can request a copy of our catalog by using the link at the bottom of every page or you can view a digital version of the catalog by using the "View Online Catalogs" link at the bottom of every page.

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Where do I find technical and instruction manuals for equipment?
Download equipment manuals from our website. Just type the product name or number into the search bar to go to the product page. Click on the product to go to a page with more details, then scroll down to the “Overview” tab. Click “Documents” and choose the manual you need. It should download automatically.

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Tariffs


Some of our customers may have noticed tariffs on recent orders. Because we always want to be completely transparent with you, here are answers to the most frequently asked questions about these charges.

What is a tariff?
A tariff is a tax that the federal government levies on imported products. It’s often charged as a percentage of the value of a product that a U.S. buyer pays a foreign exporter.1

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Why am I being charged a tariff?
A tariff is a tax based on imported goods. You are being charged because a product/part in your cart has been imported and therefore, has been taxed with a tariff.

In the U.S., tariffs are collected at ports of entry, which are controlled by Customs and Border Protection (CBP). In order to get the foreign goods cleared through customs, U.S. importers have to pay the duties, which they are likely to pass on to consumers later.1

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Can a tariff be waived?
Unfortunately, no. A tariff is a tax, and it cannot be waived.

1Shen Lu, “What Are Tariffs Anyway?,” Magnify Money, last modified August 24, 2018, www.magnifymoney.com/blog/news/what-are-tariffs-anyway

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