CHOICE membership

Tech 21 Lifetime Warranty no longer honoured

Just sharing my experience with members. Purchased a very expensive Mobile phone protective case and glass cover by Tech 21. Receipt and box clearly state lifetime unlimited warranty.

Tech 21 no longer honouring the lifetime warranty when question why, simply state they have changed their policy on lifetime warranties. So too bad for me. Purchased at JB Hi fi.

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Without going into the ins and outs of a company changing warranties or policies after one purchased their product, have you read this page and does it describe your problem?

https://www.tech21.com/en_au/warranty

While there may be more information not posted, does it seem like JB might be fobbing you off?

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Sounds like a fob-off.

As per the link that @TheBBG provided, it appears that it is business as usual with lifetime warranties as long as your product is one of those listed.

Have you tried to contact Tech21 directly?

Here is the link to their Australian website.

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Puffery, at its worse.

The warranty Terms and Conditions state…

The product will be free of defects in workmanship and materials for 24 months from purchase. Warranty does not extend to normal wear and tear, accident or misuse. Return defective goods to your retailer at your own expense. Proof of purchase is required.

The lifetime warranty means what the manufacturer deems is the lifetime of the product and not that it will last for ever as could be (wrongly) assumed by the customer. Using the product also isn’t covered if it falls apart/fails because of its recommended use…this falls into wear and tear.

Other companies have been in trouble when using the term lifetime warranties and the limitations are not disclosed prior to purchase…

It would be interesting to see what the product packaging says as it may be worth taking further.

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The issue as I see it is that @NotHappyJan has been told that the lifetime warranty has been discontinued, not that her claim is not covered.

It would also help if she described the fault with the product and when she bought it.

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It is possibly that the product is outside the lifetime warranty duration or is an exemption under the warranty T&Cs.

The lifetime warranty still exists (refer @TheBBG post), but isn’t a lifetime warranty as one may assume without reading the T&Cs.

I agree and if it was through use (e.g, being dropped). The price paid would also be useful as a premium priced product may infer higher quality and longer warranty.

Looking at the JB Hifi website, Tech21 products are very expensive for what they are…and from descriptions could be considered a premium product (even if reality is different).

If the fault was due to its quality or through a manufacturing defect, I would be taking it further with JB Hifi and Tech21, especially if the packaging is silent on what the lifetime warranty means. I would also be using Belkin as an example of why consumer rights stand and remedy is required.

I would also indicate that if resolution is not forthcoming, a complaint will be lodged with the ACCC.

If the fault was cause by it being dropped etc, then potential further action may be limited unless the product is guaranteed to survive such incidents.

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The unanswered, and no conclusion or further advice is possible without knowing, regardless that the present warranty

since the ‘lifetime’ is now defined.

If they changed the warranty T&C after @NotHappyJan made her purchase one would expect the original warranty to be applicable, would one not? Whether that occurred and whether there is evidence of that is germane.

Let’s await some more information…

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One of my favourite conundrums. The lifetime of the product or the lifetime of the consumer?

But remember that a manufacturers warranty does not override the Australian Consumer Law unless it offers something more. The product should last a reasonable length of time (statutory guarantee as to acceptable quality, including being durable).

JB Hifi should know this. If the goods are faulty and cannot be repaired, you should rely on the ACL and ask for a repair, refund or replacement.

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Hi Everyone.

I have spoken to Tech 21 directly. I haven’t involved JB Hi Fi.

The problem here is that I have actually had the glass replaced previously under lifetime warranty. I sent through pictures and disclosed to them I had actually cracked the cover because I had dropped it. It was replaced and I picked up a replacement from JB.

My issue is that they changed the terms…

Please see use of the word updated in their correspondence with me. As the product is no longer being made, I have no change of receiving a replacement.

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You seem to have gotten a good run with the product, but you do have an option.

Draft a formal letter of complaint per the ACL (many references on the community, easy to find with google) using the complaint template tool. Choice also has a page on your rights and the process. State what you bought, the warranty included (eg the warranty you bought), your expectations under the ACL that are overarching and cannot be diluted by the manufacturer warranty, their statements of quality and so on as claimed at the time you bought it, and what you want them to do. Deliver it to a JBHiFi manager as they ‘own’ your warranty problem and it is for them to field it between yourself and Tech21. Keep everything in writing, get receipts, and log any conversations as close to real time as possible. If you were inclined to then go to your consumer affairs office you will need that as a prerequisite to lodge a complaint.

You need to word it as if a silk explaining to a judge, and leave nothing out including you bought a product with its warranty, and changing the warranty is not on as it devalues what you purchased (and could be illegal). Notwithstanding the ACL overrides it!

Because the product you bought is no longer manufactured does not mean they are thus no longer responsible. You may be entitled to a new model as close as they make to the one you purchased.

As example, we had a salt and pepper grinder set with a lifetime warranty on the mechanism (eg grinder elements). After many years we could not get the cap bolt lose to adjust the mechanism as salt had apparently built up internally and frozen it. All I wanted was a new cap bolt so I could force off the old one but the part not available. The importer provided the newest model set at no cost, that incidentally was double the RRP of that we purchased.

I hope that is enough to get you started. If you need further guidance to pursue this via the ACL please let us know.

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The link is for the UK warranty page…they must have thought you were in the UK…The Australian one is in @TheBBG pos above.

Usually this falls outside the Australian Consumer Law, unless the product gives an indication that it won’t break if dropped…which doesn’t appear the case from looking at some of their products. Some of the screen protector type products are also what is called sacrificial, where they absorb the energy and can break to protect the underlying screen. If it broke and the underlying screen was okay, then it did its job.

Under Tech 21 Australian T&Cs it states:

Warranty does not extend to normal wear and tear, accident or misuse.

It is also an exception under the Australian Consumer Law as it would fit into ‘misused a product in any way that caused the problem’. Dropping is misuse of the product and a manufacturer should not be responsible for damage caused by a consumer dropping their product.

It is highly unlikely that you will get any resolution should you take it further.

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Excepting @NotHappyJan did not divulge the current problem, although we can imply it may be another ‘drop and crack’. Note they previously replaced it for same so there may be precedent.

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Or lucky…maybe they now realise that they shouldn’t have when they state …Tech21 will not be liable for any indirect or incidental damages while using this product.*

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Sorry to hear about issues this company, but my understanding is that under Australian law we are covered for faulty products and the responsibility lies with the place of purchase.
I was advised against using glass cover by Telstra Rep due to potential heat retention. Not sure how accurate this is.