Understanding Your Consumer Rights
When it comes to purchasing electronic products, it’s important to understand your rights as a consumer. Read the Service Plus guide to consumer rights which discusses common misconceptions and provides insights based on our experience as a repairer. However, please note that this guide should not supersede the policies of manufacturers, retailers or the law.
Choosing Reputable Manufacturers and Retailers
To ensure a positive consumer experience, always purchase electronic products from reputable manufacturers and retailers. Our experience has shown that these companies are more willing to assist their customers compared to those focused solely on low prices. Quality brands often offer superior service without a significant price difference. Buying from local companies can also be advantageous as it allows direct communication and falls under New Zealand laws.
The Consumer Guarantees Act (CGA) sets the base level of consumer rights for purchases made in New Zealand. However, if you bought a product under a business name, the CGA may not cover you. Additionally, the CGA does not extend to goods purchased overseas, meaning products bought online from abroad are not protected by the act. If you have a dispute under the CGA and are unsatisfied with the remedies offered by the retailer, manufacturer or service provider, you can escalate the issue to the Disputes Tribunal. We recommend exhausting all other avenues before resorting to this step, as there are costs and potential delays involved.
Manufacturer warranties usually accompany your purchased product and are provided in writing or accessible online. These warranties are separate from the CGA and can extend the warranty period or cover additional services at an extra cost. Remember, manufacturers’ warranties do not replace or bypass your CGA rights. Also, retailers now often offer Accidental Damage policies which cover drop damage, liquid spills and more. They usually have a lower excess than home & contents insurance and cover incidents outside the home.
Third-Party Warranty (Extended Warranty)
Third-party warranties are typically offered by insurance organisations and are often sold by retailers as add-ons during the product purchase. Like manufacturers’ warranties, third-party warranties do not replace or override your CGA or Fair Trading rights. If you need to make a claim under a third-party warranty, contact the warranty provider as outlined in the policy you received at the time of purchase. If you’re unsatisfied with the chosen repairer, request an alternative to ensure the quality of service and use of genuine parts.
Service Plus collaborates with several insurance companies to handle repairs resulting from physical damage, such as drops or liquid spills. In these cases, customers are usually required to pay an excess fee. However, it’s important to note that standard house and contents insurance may not cover goods used for business or school purposes. To ensure coverage for your valuable electronics, consider obtaining additional insurance or including a clause in your policy. If you have an insurance case, you should report the incident to your insurer. They will direct you to an approved repairer. Opting for an approved service provider is recommended, as non-approved repairs on sensitive electronic products can void any recourse with the manufacturer or retailer.
Knowing your consumer rights when it comes to purchasing electronic products is crucial for a smooth and satisfactory experience. By understanding the Consumer Guarantees Act, manufacturers’ warranties, third-party warranties, and insurance coverage, you can make informed decisions and protect yourself as a consumer. If you need repairs, Service Plus is an authorised repairer of many popular brands. Contact us today to log a repair.