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Warranties in the USA - and Canada ?


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#1 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 05:35 PM

I admit it, I have been based in the UK and Europe all my life and while I have a fairly good grip on the cultural and social backgrounds here my knowledge of these things in the USA and Canada is distinctly limited.

 

Warranties, especially in regard to fairly new equipment going faulty, are a subject that comes up fairly often on BC and there seems to be no standard warranty referred to. Quite simply, if I buy a laptop in the UK, or indeed in the EU, I have a mininum 12 months to claim my money back if it goes faulty.

 

I have no idea what is regarded as normal consumer protection in either the USA or Canada. Can anybody offer some education on this ?

 

Chris Cosgrove


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#2 mrbluto

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 05:57 PM

It depends on what you pay for. 99% have a 1 year repair warranty, not a money back warranty. If you buy the unit from a big box store, it is usually 14 days to return for a fully refund. That is different for best Buy as they charge a restocking fee of 20%. So if you buy it in the US, you better use it and like it before the warranty is up.



#3 Animal

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 06:06 PM

Depends on the manufacturer and the retailer. Plus some states have specific consumer rights. One example is Costco stands behind their products for two years, period. Full refund within two years. And thats not an extended warranty you have to pay for.

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#4 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 07:28 PM

I assumed it was a matter for State's law as opposed to Federal but in comparison to the EU you seem to have very scanty rules in place. Doubtless this goes some way to explaining the different costs of such things at point of sale between here and the USA - TANSTAAFL and all that - but in general we feel the trade-off is worth it.

 

Are you saying that there is no US or Canadian equivalent of the British Sale of Goods Act ?  I don't necessarily suggest you read it but here is the reference -

 

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1979/54

 

I worked in Trading Standards, a Local Government function, a number of years ago and I don't remember us ever having to search for work !  The problem I have is that from time to time I have suggested that people with new but faulty equipment go and take it back. If a member is from the UK or EU I am quite confident on my grounds for making a claim but much less so in regards to those living on the Western side of the Atlantic.

 

Chris Cosgrove


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#5 Guest_JWebb_*

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 07:51 PM

The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act applies to all of the United States.

 

Most states have adopted the Uniform Commercial Code Warranty of merchantability



#6 Animal

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 08:09 PM

Thank you for that information JWebb.

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#7 Guest_JWebb_*

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Posted 25 January 2015 - 08:26 PM

No problem.  I didn't spend 3 years smoking pot at FSU Law for nothing.



#8 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 26 January 2015 - 06:29 PM

I don't  know about the pot, but obviously the three years didn't do your short game any harm either !  You would get on with my wife - a golf fanatic.

 

Thanks for the info. US law is very similar to that in the UK, it's just the little details that differ, and we all know that the devil is in the detail.

 

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#9 myrti

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Posted 26 January 2015 - 07:16 PM

Hi Chris,

 

Just a little note: EU law states that you have 24 months warranty, not 12. Not sure if this applies to the UK, but I would suspect so. It's come in handy for me more than once, by now.

 

 

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#10 Chris Cosgrove

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Posted 27 January 2015 - 06:47 PM

Myrti, you are correct about EU law giving 24 months warranty, Apple recently fell foul of the legal system in Italy because of this and the courts in the UK are quite willing to disregard any piddling periods like 24 months if they see fit !  'Reasonable expectation' is their guide line.

 

But am I not right in thinking that it is up to 12 months - replace; 12 to 24 months repair / replace ?  Either way, in Europe we seem to have definite time spans for warranties which seems not to be the case on the other side of the Atlantic.

 

Chris Cosgrove


I am going to be away until about the 22nd October. Time on-line will be reduced and my internet access may be limited. PMs may not be replied to as quickly as normal !





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