John Lewis to offer free two-year guarantees

4 October 2013

John Lewis is to provide a free minimum two-year guarantee on all electrical products from Thursday 10 October.

The department store already guarantees TVs for five years; and computing, tablets and domestic appliances for two years as standard. But electricals that didn't previously come with a guarantee - such as games consoles, cameras, audio equipment and small appliances - will now be covered for at least 24 months.

In a statement, the company said: "Most manufacturers typically offer a one-year guarantee as standard on their products, but John Lewis is the first electricals retailer to offer a minimum of two years across all home technology and electrical appliances at no extra cost to the consumer.

"The initiative is designed to offer extra value and reassurance that customers won't incur expensive repair bills in the unlikely event of something going wrong with the product."

However, the John Lewis guarantee only covers manufacturing defects that cause breakdown rather than damage resulting from an accident or misuse. To cover these scenarios, you should make sure your items are covered by your home contents insurance.

In September, consumer rights group Which? sent mystery shoppers into high street stores to investigate how staff were selling extended warranties. It found that little had changed since the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) said in 2012 consumers were not getting enough information to make informed decisions.

Currys and PC World were rated the worst by Which?, as they tried to sell warranties to the mystery shoppers on 11 out of 12 occasions, but during all bar one of those occasions the retailer failed to pass on the correct information regarding warranties and consumer rights. In the same survey, John Lewis performed the best, failing just one test visit.

Ed Connolly, buying director of electricals and home technology at John Lewis, said: "There is a lack of transparency across electricals guarantees. The vast majority of consumers don't understand guarantees and are frustrated by the complexity that surrounds them."

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