Martin Lewis warns against falling for this trick when returning faulty tech

It's crucial for you to understand: 'warranty schmarranty'

Martin Lewis in white shirt and blue jacket
(Image credit: Future PLC / Colin Poole)

Money-saving expert, Martin Lewis, takes to Instagram to share a tip on ensuring you don't get 'fobbed off' when trying to make a claim for your faulty tech.

We all love getting our hands on new tech, especially when it comes to home appliances. Whether you've bagged the best air fryer or the best vacuum cleaner, the last thing anybody wants is to spend hundreds of pounds just to get a measly couple of months to a year of satisfactory use.

If you're trying to get your tech repaired, sneakily enough, most retailers' warranties only cover a year. However, Martin Lewis shares that warranty becomes 'pretty irrelevant when it comes to the law.'

Desktop computer and laptop on desk next to decorative items in home office

(Image credit: Future PLC / James French)

Martin Lewis faulty tech warranty advice

Martin Lewis took to Instagram to share some important faulty tech warranty advice.

If you’ve bought some tech, it’s gone faulty and you’ve taken it back, do not allow them to fob you off by saying: ‘I’m sorry. It’s out of warranty. We can’t do anything.’

'Let’s be very plain here. Your warranty is a voluntary service agreement that a shop or a manufacturer chooses to give you over a product. But you also have statutory legal rights, and they say goods must follow what I call the SAD FART rules,' Martin Lewis explains. These are your consumer rights.

White utility room with washing machine

(Image credit: Future PLC)

'In other words, they must be satisfactory as described (that's your SAD), fit for purpose, and last a reasonable length of time. And the last one is crucial – items must last a reasonable length of time, provided that you have behaved as you should with them.'

So now you may be thinking, what is a reasonable length of time? Martin Lewis explains it simply. If you bought a 50p whistle and it broke after six months, that's pretty reasonable. However, if you bought a £1400 phone and it stopped working after 14 months? Arguably, that isn't reasonable.

laptop on white table in kitchen with yellow cupboard door and red table lamp

(Image credit: Future PLC / David Merewether)

'Ultimately, only the court decides. But it’s crucial for you to understand: warranty schmarranty,' the money-saving expert warns.

If you've got faulty tech and you don't think it satisfied the 'SAD FART rules', go back to the retailer and demand a partial refund, repair, or replacement.

home office with transparent desk and laptop

(Image credit: Future PLC / David Giles)

So if there's some faulty tech you've been meaning to return for a while now but had originally given up due to 'warranty' restrictions, this is your sign to go and exercise your rights as a consumer.

In the words of Martin Lewis, don't be fobbed off. After all, warranty becomes pretty irrelevant when it comes to the law.

Jullia Joson
Junior Writer

Jullia Joson is Ideal Home’s Junior Writer. She’s always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham in 2022. Previously, she was an Intern Editor for ArchDaily. Now focused on news stories, Jullia can be found down the TikTok and Pinterest rabbit hole scrolling through any new and upcoming trends, hacks, and home inspiration.