There are also no laws regulating manufacturers’ guarantees but a manufacturer is still bound by contractual law to stick to the terms of his own guarantee once it is given.
What guarantees do not cover
It is very important to read the guarantee carefully to see what are the restrictions on what you can claim. Most guarantees make you pay for the following items:
- Labour charges: guarantees often states that the manufacturer will replace defective parts free of charge but the labour cost involved in fitting those parts would have to be borne by you;
- Transport charges: normally you have to get the defective product to the manufacturer. The costs involved have to be borne by you;
- Spare parts: manufacturers sometimes only guarantee parts made by themselves. If parts made by some other company are included in the product, then you might have to pay for these replacement parts.
All products which have a guarantee are only guaranteed for a fixed period of time. It could be a one-year, two-year or five-year guarantee. Sometimes it states one year or 20,000km, whichever is earlier. In some products different parts have different guarantee periods. For example, in refrigerators, the refrigerator is guaranteed for one year but the motor may be guaranteed for five years. Once the guarantee has expired, you would have to bear all the costs of repair, including parts and labour.
When the guarantee is void
All guarantees contain a clause which states something like “This warranty becomes null and void if any alterations in the electrical circuit or parts either by way of adjustment, additions to or replacements by parts of other makes are made by anyone other than ourselves or our authorised dealers.” Thus you have to ensure that the product is not tampered with, either by you or by anyone else.
Sending off the guarantee card
Many manufacturers request you to fill in part of the guarantee card and send it to them within a certain period. This you should do, keeping your portion of the guarantee card as well as the receipt of purchase. The card is to help the manufacturers keep track of the product and to keep them informed of the expiry date of the guarantee.
You should realise that since manufacturers are not legally obliged to give guarantees for their products, they are quite entitled to set their own conditions like a time limit for buyers to send in their guarantee cards for the guarantee to be valid — for example 10 days from the date of purchase. However, most well-known companies will not penalise you if you have forgotten to send in the card or have misplaced your portion of it, so long as you can show proof of purchase such as the receipt.
Who to complain to?
Kementerian Perdagangan Dalam Negeri dan Hal Ehwal Pengguna,
Tingkat 27, 31, 32 & 33, Menara Dayabumi, Jalan Sultan Hishamuddin,
50632 Kuala Lumpur
or its nearest branch office.