The guarantee of a product: what it is, what it covers and everything you need to know to apply it

Our refrigerator has broken and we have to buy a new one. That financial outlay that we make for this household product in some cases can be significant; In addition, we talk about one of the essential appliances that every home should have. That is why, when purchasing this product, we ask for the warranty of the same, either that of legal or commercial type.

Below we will explain how the two differ, what coverage they contemplate and how to exercise your rights as a consumer in this regard.

My rights as a consumer

As explained by KontsumoBIDE, the Basque Government’s consumer department, (@kontsumoBIDE), this warranty is a right that the law recognizes to consumers and it concerns all the goods that these users allocate for their private consumption.

In the first case (that of the legal guarantee) we speak of a mandatory coverage in relation to the rights that the consumer has for the return, repair, price reduction or termination of a sales contract. In addition, this coverage extends to installation (when required and thus established in that contract).

On the other hand is the warranty commercial that these companies offer voluntarily as a complement to the first one and in no case may it be inferior to the legal one; and not much less replace it (Take a good look when you read these documents). In this case, the law requires the seller to provide information regarding the model and brand of the product, details of the person responsible for that guarantee, which rights it includes and which ones it does not offer, the duration of this commercial coverage and the geographical application; as well as the avenues available in the event that the consumer wants to file a claim.

For all these reasons, it is important that during the period agreed for that guarantee, both legal and commercial, you keep (as is due so that it is not toxic) all purchase receipts, contracts or instruction brochures in order to be able to exercise your rights as a consumer in this case.

The guarantee of a product: what it is, what it covers and everything you need to know to apply it

What does this warranty cover and how can we apply it?

Home appliances, footwear, clothing, vehicles, furniture, butane bottles and even homes. They are just some of the products in which this guarantee can be applied. A consumer protection that has a duration of 2 years that starts counting from the date of purchase of that product (or subsequent delivery note if the delivery of the same is done after a while). That term is minor when what we have acquired is a second-hand object or item, either from a professional or an individual.

It may be that during those months some doubts assail us if the product has a problem. We explain the most common cases when applying that guarantee:

  • Yes, we are within the first 6 months and that product fails, the most normal thing is that it is due to a factory defect. In this case, the selling company can demonstrate that this is not the case and that the damage has been caused by misuse by the user. This, for its part, you do not have to prove anything as the OCU explains (@consumers) if it occurs within that period.
  • If the fault occurs after that date (we are still within the warranty coverage), it is the buyer who has to prove that this defect was already there when he bought it and that it was not his fault. An expert will be in charge of resolving this issue if there is no understanding between the parties.
  • If the buyer is correct, the seller must respond with a settlement of the same (except if it is second-hand). If this is too high, you may ask for «explanations» from the manufacturer of that product.
  • And one thing that is most likely to escape us: the instructions must come in our language if we have bought it in our territory. It is not nonsense: those tutorials for the use and installation of that device must be written in Spanish to avoid errors in the installation. However, if you have bought that object in another country or online, the responsibility in this regard is your responsibility if everything appears in Chinese, for example.
  • If what we have bought is a device such as a technology product, an electrical appliance or a motorcycle, for example, within the warranty technical repair is covered during that time. In addition, if we need a spare part, this guarantee covers a minimum period of 5 years from the date on which that product ceased to be manufactured.
  • If that item has to be fixed, the warranty time does not run during those days. It remains in suspension, so to speak.
  • If after the repair, that object still gives the same fault, then that user can demand that this refrigerator (the example we have chosen) be replaced by a totally new one.
  • All these actions (repairs and product changes) that are made must be perfectly registered in a new contract or document signed by both parties.
  • And if the sales establishment has closed, it is recommended that you go to the manufacturer or producer of that good.
The guarantee of a product: what it is, what it covers and everything you need to know to apply it