Warranty – what is it?  Some items or products are sold with a warranty. A warranty is a promise that if the product is faulty or breaks down within a specific period of time and it is not the fault of the user, that the item will be repaired or replaced.

Items have different lengths of warranty. It is important to check what the warranty is and what the terms are.

You will normally need your receipt to claim on a warranty.

A retailer may offer you an extended warranty for an extra fee. You should always check that this warranty is value for money and does not conflict with the manufacturers warranty.

Under Australian Consumer Law there are consumer guarantees. When you buy products and services they come with automatic guarantees. These guarantees give you, the buyer, a right to have faulty items fixed even if you do not have a warranty or extended warranty or even if the warranty has expired. This has to be within reason. For example if you buy a $200 toaster and it breaks after 12 months and your warranty has ended and you did not purchase an extended warranty, whoever sold you the toaster or the manufacturer of the toaster should replace it. The automatic guarantee would probably not apply if the toaster was $20.

For more information on consumer guarantees visit Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Guarantees website.

 In Tasmania, you can contact Consumer Affairs and Fair Trading for more information.