Philips DVR-980 problem and The Law


Ex Member
Aug 13, 2001
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A friend has had a philips DVR-980 recorder for about 15 months, which she bought mail order. It has developed a fault in that when it reaches near the end of a disc (any disc, +R or +RW) it gives a disc error and the recording is unreadable.

I have stripped the machine down and cannot see any fault with the disc tray or mechanism, and the laser head and track appear to be okay.

I reckon it would be pretty expensive to repair this machine. But then I thought about the law governing consumer electrical equipment which, I believe, states that electrical equipment should work for a "reasonable period of time" without breakdown or else the owner can claim a repair or (part) refund if it doesn't.

How long would be considered "reasonable" and would it apply in this case?
IMHO your best bet is to contact Philips directly - I know it is out of warranty but there is a good chance they will still fix it. Worth a try anyway.
15 months is not reasonable and trading standards will back you up. Here's a good link.
A friend of mine had a Sanyo TV, 28" widescreen, under 3 years old. Tube failed - contacted Sanyo with an engineers report. Sanyo's response? goodwill gesture - tube half price £110+VAT but no contribution to labour charges. Estimate based on this was £200+.

Trading Standards advised that it is up to you as the customer to prove the equipment has a 'manufacturing defect'. Unless you can prove that, they say you have very little chance of any goodwill.

Despite much arguing and threats of small claims court, he got nowhere.

Result - 1 scrapped telly.

BTW. If you've had the top off then your warranty is null and void!

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