Essential Guide to Claiming Warranties in Australia

Updated: 20 March 2020

Did your refrigerator stop working? Is your smartphone acting up? If you are trying to find out whether you are entitled to make a warranty claim under the Australian Consumer Law, Phyx has put together a simple guide with all the most commonly asked questions to help you expedite your warranty claim. And don't forget to download Phyx, a free home inventory app which will help you speed up your warranty and insurance claims. 

What is your Consumer Right in Australia?

In Australia, In all contracts for goods, you, the consumer, are protected by a number of statutory conditions and statutory warranties. Here's a quick list of what you are entitled to:

1) Goods must be of merchantable quality – they must meet a level of quality and performance that would be reasonable to expect, given their price and description. They should also be free from defects that were not obvious at the time of purchase.

Example: One of Sharon’s new shoes loses its heel the first time she wears it outside. The shoe is not of merchantable quality.

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2)  Goods must be fit for their intended purpose – they should be suitable for any particular purpose the buyer made known to the seller.

Example: Tony explains to a shop salesman that he wants a DVD player that will play discs produced in other countries, and buys the machine the salesman says will do this. He later discovers overseas discs do not work in the player. The goods were not fit for their intended purpose, which had been made known to the salesman.


3)  The goods must match the description given to the consumer, or the sample shown.


Example: Alice orders a red dress from a clothing business’s website, based on a sample photograph, but receives a pink one instead. The goods do not match the description and so do not meet this statutory condition.


4)  A consumer must receive clear title to the goods – that is, the seller must be entitled to sell the goods.


Example: The second-hand car Lee recently bought from a dealer is repossessed by police. He finds out that the vehicle was stolen. The seller did not give Lee clear title to the goods.

The statutory warranties also require that you, as the consumer:


1)  Enjoy quiet possession of the goods;


2)  The goods are free from any charge or encumbrance not disclosed or known to the consumer.

Commonly Asked Questions When Claiming Warranties - Know Your Rights

Whilst the Australia Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) do their best to protect your rights, consumers like you are often unaware of what you are entitled to under the Australian Consumer Law. We, at Phyx, have thus compiled answers to commonly asked questions to help you understand your rights when you are making a warranty claim. 

Q: I lost my receipt and warranty card but I know my washing machine is still under warranty. Can I still make a warranty claim?


A: Although many brands indicate in their warranty terms and conditions that “Proof of purchase is required before you can make a claim under this warranty", according to ACCC, “as long as you can reasonably demonstrate that you purchased an item, a business may be breaking the law if it denies your right to a refund, repair or replacement for an item that fails to meet a consumer guarantee.” 

Our recommendation is to contact the manufacturer and provide them with your product serial number. They are usually able to identify when the product was manufactured and estimate if it is still under warranty.

Missing and faded receipts can really slow you down when you need to make a claim. Get the Phyx mobile app to speed up any warranty claim. It’s free. Click here to try it now.   

Q: I bought a coffee machine from an online retailer. The machine broke down after a month of normal use and when I tried to return it to the manufacturer, they told me that they can only repair the coffee machine and will not be able to give me a refund. 

A: According to ACCC, the law gives you, the consumer, the right to pursue a manufacturer or importer for a remedy, even if goods were bought from a retailer. However, manufacturers and importers are not required to issue refunds unless the consumer purchased the goods directly from them – that is, they have a contract of sale with the consumer.

Q: I bought a blender from a retailer. The blender broke after a month of normal use and when I tried to return it to the retailer, they told me that they will only give me a refund in store credit.  

A: According to ACCC, if you, the consumer, cancel your contract of sale with the seller (in this case, the retailer), you are entitled to insist on a full refund.

A seller may NOT insist that you receive another form of remedy (such as repair or replacement goods) or insist that the refund be issued as store credit.

A consumer is generally entitled to receive any refund in the form of their original payment. For example, if you paid for an item with a credit card, it is reasonable for the seller to give you a credit card refund. If goods were purchased on an instalment plan, you are entitled to a refund of any payments made and to have any outstanding balance on the goods cancelled.

Q: I bought a microwave oven from an online. The microwave stopped working after 5 months of normal use and when I tried returning it to the manufacturer, I was told that I had to return the microwave in its original packaging. 


A: According to ACCC, if you have a contract of sale with the retailer and you are returning the item to the retailer, insisting consumers return goods unopened, or in their original packaging may be misleading (as these are not required to claim a remedy under statutory rights). The same applies if you are making a warranty claim from the manufacturer under your statutory rights.  

However, if you are making a warranty claim based on the voluntary warranty offered by the manufacturer, the manufacturer may require you to return goods in their original packaging as a condition of claiming a refund under a voluntary warranty. However, a consumer seeking a refund under their statutory rights does not need to return the packaging. 

Q: I bought a vacuum cleaner on sale from a retail store. The vacuum cleaner broke after 3 months of normal use but the retailer has refused my claim because it’s a sale item.

A: Some sellers have a policy on refunds and returns and may choose to display signs so consumers are aware of these before buying. However, according to ACCC, businesses do not have to use signs but if they do, they must not mislead consumers.

For example, signs that state ‘no refunds’ or ‘no refund on sale items’, could lead consumers to believe they have no right to a refund under any circumstances, which is untrue because if a statutory condition has been breached, the consumer may be entitled to a refund.

Policies that set a time limit, such as ‘no refunds after 30 days’, can be misleading because statutory rights have no time limits, other than what is ‘reasonable’.

Q: My oven broke down after 1 .5 years of normal use. I contacted the retailer and the manufacturer and they insist that they are not responsible. I feel that it is within my consumer rights to make the warranty claim. Where can I lodge a complaint? 

A: According to the ACCC, the first thing to do is to contact the business to explain the problem and the outcome you want. It is a good idea to write a complaint letter - that way, the seller is clearly aware of the problem and what you want, and you also have a record of your contact.

Failing that, you can reach out to your local state and territory consumer protection agency (sometimes called 'consumer affairs'). They can provide you with information about your rights and options. They may also be able to help negotiate a resolution between you and the seller. Follow links here:

Access Canberra 

NSW Fair Trading

NT Consumer Affairs 

Office of Fair Trading

SA Office of Consumer and Business Services (CBS)

Tasmania Consumer, Building and Occupational Services (CBOS)

Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV)

WA Consumer Protection - Department Of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety

You can also contact ACCC here.

Q: I purchased my Beko product at auction, what warranty do I have?

A: Beko offers a 24-month warranty on new products only (subject to Australian Consumer Law). Purchases made at auction are sold “as is” and are not considered new. They will NOT be covered by the manufacturer unless that is expressly stated by Beko. You should check the conditions of sale with the auction house prior to making the purchase.

Q: Can I register my Beko product purchased at auction for the 5-year warranty?

A: No. These products do not meet the terms and conditions of the 5 years warranty and as such, you cannot claim any additional manufacturer’s warranty on these items.

Q: I have purchased my product at auction, don’t I have rights under the Australian Consumer Law?


A: Products sold by auction are not covered by the guarantees, other than those relating to clear title, undisturbed possession and undisclosed securities.

Q: I purchased a factory second, refurbished unit from an authorised reseller, what warranty do I have?


A. The terms and conditions of your warranty on these products will be attached to your appliance and should be reviewed by you prior to accepting the item. If you have not received this document please contact your place of purchase. In summary:


Trade Second – Category T1 (12 months warranty, full parts and labour warranty only)

- This product may have been a demonstration, superseded, second hand or test unit. It has been unpacked and transported without original packaging. It may have scratch and dent damage.


Trade Second – Category T2 (6 months warranty, full parts and labour warranty only)

- This product may have been a demonstration, superseded, second hand or test unit. It has been previously used and it has required repair. It has been unpacked and transported without original packaging. It may have scratch and dent damage.


For more details, click here

Q: Can I register my factory second, refurbished unit for the 5-year warranty?


A: No. These products do not meet the terms and conditions of the 5 years warranty and as such, you cannot claim any additional manufacturer’s warranty on these items.


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