The European Parliament approved recommendations that can help the advent of more reliable and maintainable products

Many news regarding the assessment of the maintainability of a product, often you can find users ‘ opinions, who believe that it doesn’t matter and repairing smart phones (tablets, monitors, laptops, and so on), or not necessary at all, or no matter how much it will cost.

But for the average user this issue is pretty important. So says the European Parliament, which endorsed the recommendations for manufacturers relating to issues of maintainability. Note that while this is only a recommendation, that is, companies themselves decide whether to follow them or you can close your eyes to them. But with time some of these ideas can be implemented into the applicable law.

So, members of the European Parliament believe that the material goods must be sufficiently maintainable, software must be able to easily upgrade. They also advocate the elimination of the principles of deliberate obsolescence of products and the availability of spare parts. The point about intentional obsolescence is very interesting, because the very fact of its presence in the list of recommendations suggests that the European Parliament considers that the producers of such a practice.

The document says that the European Parliament wants to promote the idea of longer-life products. Among the recommendations are the following:

  • Reliable, maintainable products with a long service life;
  • Minimum stability criteria established for each category of products still at the design stage;
  • The change of the warranty for cases where the repair takes more than a month;
  • Member States of the EU should create incentives to manufacturers to create more reliable and maintainable products that stimulate the repair and sale of used vehicles, which should increase the number of jobs and reduce waste;
  • Consumers should have the opportunity to appeal to independent repair shops, and software or hardware solutions that prevent this must be removed;
  • The main components (batteries, LEDs) shall not be bonded unless required for safety reasons;
  • The parts that are necessary for the proper and safe functioning of the goods must be affordable, appropriate to the nature and the life of the product (by the way, this is an opportunity for manufacturers to sell more high-quality and reliable spare parts more expensive);
  • Across the EU should be introduced a common definition of «planned obsolescence», as well as a corresponding system, which would help to determine the presence in the products corresponding to this definition of solutions and would take necessary action against the producers;
  • The introduction of a special marking, which determines the longevity of the product, the presence of elements of «eco-design», the ability to upgrade and reuse (something like the iFixit rating);
  • To create a «meter» for the most relevant consumer products to provide better consumer awareness.

The document also says that 77% of consumers prefer the EU to repair the goods if possible instead of buying new.


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