New right to repair rules for UK manufacturers

Posted on 1 Jul 2021 by Lois Mackenzie

As of Thursday 1st July, new rules for electrical goods manufacturers will be put in place. In a bid to reduce electrical waste, manufacturers will be legally required to make spare parts available for all products.

This means even out of warrantee consumers will have a right to repair, giving them access to purchase parts for their appliance, instead of having to purchase a new product.

It is estimated that the UK generates up to 1.5ml tonnes of waste every year. It is hoped that this new legislation will reduce the amount of waste going to landfill each year by increasing the lifespan of electrical goods by an extra decade.

Right to repair

The legislation, which comes into place today, is directly tackling products built with no lasting qualities, costing the consumer unnecessarily for replacements.

These changes will also set far higher energy efficiency standards for electrical products, which will save consumers £75 on average each year. This is said to reduce 8 mega-tonnes of carbon emissions in 2021 by reducing the amount of energy products a consumer uses in their lifetime.

White goods
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Business and Energy Secretary, Kwasi Kwarteng, said: “Our plans to tighten product standards will ensure more of our electrical goods can be fixed rather than thrown on the scrap heap, putting more money back in the pockets of consumers whilst protecting the environment.

“Going forward, our upcoming energy efficiency framework will push electrical products to use even less energy and material resources, saving people money on their bills and reducing carbon emissions as we work to reach net zero by 2050.”

Energy efficiency labels

Since March, the government have also been introducing new energy labels. The new standards for rating have been reassessed and the standard have been raised. Meaning very few products will now be classed as rating A. The government believe this revamping of energy efficiency rating will incentivise manufacturers to go further in creating durable, efficient appliances.

Following Brexit, the EU flag on energy labels has been replaced by a Union Jack.

Climate Change Minister, Lord Callanan, said: “We can all play our part in ending our contribution to climate change, even when we’re choosing a new electrical appliance. The new energy labels we have introduced this week will help consumers make more informed decisions about how eco-friendly one smart TV or dishwasher is over another, helping us reduce our carbon footprint and build back greener.”

Head of International Collaboration at Energy Saving Trust, Emilie Carmichael, said: “This is another positive step in raising the minimum energy performance for domestic products. Simplifying the way energy efficiency is displayed on labels will help consumers to make more informed choices to reduce their energy consumption and bills. Equally, every small step that consumers take in choosing the most efficient appliances will help the UK in reaching its net zero targets.”