In 2000, we installed Kwikset harware throughout our new home. Twelve years later, the finish on all hardware on all exterior doors that had direct exposure to the sun has undergone extreme photo degradation.
The finish changed color, going from satin nickle to some shade of dull bronze. The change is not limited to the clear coat. Apparently, the finish is applied as a powder coat, not plated. Per instruction of a Kwikset representative I sent photos of all exterior door sets.
When asked if the finish was defective the representative replied via email "The finish is not defective. In 12 years time it is not uncommon for the finish to deteriorate as badly as yours has, the elements weigh heavy on the finish." Kwikset's final determination was that at the time of purchase, the finish was only warranted for 10 years and they would do nothing.
I do know that Kwikset hardware now carries a "Lifetime" warranty on the finish to the original purchaser, but I do not know if they have improved the finish.
It could simply be that Kwikset is relying on the original purchaser to have moved before the finish fails. I will replace my hardware, but it will not be with a Kwikset product.
Monetary Loss: $140.