New ‘right to repair’ laws coming to the UK

Manufacturers will be legally obliged to make spare parts for products available to consumers for the first time – a new legal right for repairs.

“A combination of environmental concerns over items that are hard to break down ending up in landfill alongside more spare time in the pandemic has seen a rise in people buying refurbished items or undertaking FIY – fix-it-yourself.”

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The weekend’s Mail looks at how we are now all repairing stuff:

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Mend and make new: LEE BOYCE on why more households appear to be going back in time to embrace a fix-it-yourself mentality

  • Should households be doing more to make goods last longer?
  • Government reveals more bike vouchers and appliance spare parts rules
  • Consumer Trends asks: Has the internet and TV inspired more FIY?

It’s safe to say the last few decades have been filled by a tide of consumerism in the West. Many of us now buy products with little thought and throw them away with little more, mainly thanks to lower prices and higher disposable incomes. We’re on a never ending consuming loop of brand new smartphones every couple of years and cheap flat-pack furniture. And with a few clicks, we  can essentially buy just about anything delivered to our door within 24 hours.

But, it appears the tide is turning when it comes to trying to make items last longer. A combination of environmental concerns over items that are hard to break down ending up in landfill alongside more spare time in the pandemic has seen a rise in people buying refurbished items or undertaking FIY – fix-it-yourself.

Has the pandemic seen a rise of people willing to mend and make-do? | This is Money

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Meanwhile, there is growing interest in the ‘right to repair’ movement:

Right to repair is blossoming – Vision Group for Sidmouth

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On the Continent, the rules are getting clearer and stricter:

New ‘right to repair’ laws – Vision Group for Sidmouth

New ‘right to repair’ rules – Vision Group for Sidmouth

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And it’s about to happen in the UK, as the BBC reports this week:

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‘Right to repair’ law to come in this summer

Ministers have confirmed that from the summer consumers will have a right to repair on goods they buy. They are keeping a promise to implement EU rules aimed at cutting energy and bills – and reducing the need for new materials.

Many consumers have complained that goods don’t last long enough, then can’t be fixed in the home. Manufacturers will be legally obliged to make spare parts for products available to consumers for the first time – a new legal right for repairs. The aim of the new rules is to extend the lifespan of products by up to 10 years, and officials estimate that higher energy efficiency standards will save consumers an average of £75 a year on bills over their lifetimes.

‘Right to repair’ law to come in this summer – BBC News

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This is the response from the profession:

Spare parts legislation gives consumers ‘right to repair’ | The Engineer The Engineer

UK Confirms ‘Right to Repair’ Law But it Doesn’t Cover Everything! | eTeknix

Addressing the e-waste mountain | newelectronics.co.uk

New ‘right to repair’ law to come in this summer – here’s what it means

Manufacturers will need to supply spare parts from summer

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And here’s the government announcement:

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Electrical appliances to be cheaper to run and last longer with new standards

  • New tighter rules for how much energy white goods like washing machines and fridges as well as TVs can use will help save British consumers £75 a year on their energy bills
  • manufacturers required to make spare parts for products available for the first time – helping extend the lifespan of products by up to 10 years and preventing them ending up on the scrap heap sooner than they should
  • new energy labels introduced as part of UK plans to drive up product standards and build back greener

Electrical appliances to be cheaper to run and last longer with new standards – GOV.UK

   
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