Consumer protectionStudy reveals difficult repair of household appliances

Today, the NRW Consumer Association presented its survey results on the ease of repair of household appliances. For this study, 31 manufacturers of 45 brands were asked to indicate whether the following three requirements for a simple repair of defective products were met: Repair instructions should be made available to independent repair garages and consumers; next to authorized workshops, replacement parts should be available for free maintenance workshops and volunteer repair cafés; and the body of all appliances should be easy to open with standard or even without any tools.

These are the main results:

•    19 manufacturers representing 26 brands participated in the survey on various household appliances from toasters to washing machines. Among them, only one brand stated that they met all of the three requirements mentioned above.

•    Repair Instructions: 19 out of 26 brands shared their manuals, if available, exclusively with authorized repairers, hampering repair by independent contractors.

•    Casing: Only nine out of 19 small appliance brands (such as hair dryer, iron or toaster) stated that all of their products were easy to open. Ten brands said their products could either be opened with great difficulty or not at all. Some manufacturers offer some product categories only with devices that cannot be opened without destruction.

•    Spare parts: 18 out of 26 brands generally provide spare parts to independent repair garages and to consumers. However, some brands do not provide spare parts for small appliances, of which the casing cannot be opened – for these products a repair is not possible. 

Source: vzbv NRW

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