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The Right To Repair Is Coming.

Posted on 9th January 2019

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There is some good news about the right to repair goods that we buy. The BBC reports, here, that the EU are proposing to force manufacturers to make goods that last longer and are easier to mend. The European proposals refer to lighting, televisions and large home appliances.

This article on The Verge reports that 18 states in the USA are considering similar legislation.

I see this as a major step forward. In the last few years I have had to replace:

  • A washing machine, from Siemens, which became too expensive to repair, and could only be repaired by a technician from the manufacturer;
  • An automatic coffee maker (which cost about €650);
  • An electric fan, which no longer works, and which I am unable to repair;
  • A UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply - very expensive and too heavy for me to lift alone), which conked out immediately after the warranty expired;
  • Two network switches, which were damaged by thunder storms;
  • A network router, probably also damaged by a thunder storm.

In addition, I have:

  • A Siemens dishwasher, which has had to be repaired several times, and the last 3 times we were told that the technician wasn't sure whether the repair would hold;
  • A Siemens fridge/freezer, which needs constant attention to stop it icing up (repair is possible, but requires two people to remove it from the kitchen unit, to access the back of the machine, and the repair only works for about a month);

The lists above are probably not even complete.

I also replaced the hard disk in my laptop with an SSD (solid-state disk), and doubled the amount of RAM - I was able to do it myself, but it was extremely difficult (I had to open the laptop many times to get it properly re-assembled and working), and required special tools.