Computers are not always problem free. You should think about support options when, or even before, you buy a PC. Find out exactly what support is provided, how long it lasts and how much it costs.
Support services tend to consist of:
Before buying, try out the helpline to see how easy it is to get through. If you have to wait a long time then you should think about buying from another seller. Think about how you would feel if you waited as long to sort out a genuine problem.
If you enter into a contract for support services on the internet or over the phone, the contract will need to be compliant with the Distance Selling Regulations. You must be made aware, in writing, that these contracts cannot be cancelled once they have commenced on an agreed date.
The type of repair service varies between sellers and manufacturers, so ask before you buy. Pick a seller that provides the best service for you. If your PC breaks down, always check whether it is still covered by a warranty as explained below. Repair services are commonly organised in one of the following ways:
Most new computers will come with a manufacturer's warranty and some manufacturers offer additional warranties which you can purchase to upgrade your original warranty with or top up a warranty that is about to, or has, expired. A warranty typically covers repair and/or replacement and may include protection against accidental damage or theft. Read the small print before purchasing your PC or warranty and find out what it covers and how long it lasts. Software is not always covered.
Remember, rights under a warranty are in addition to your other consumer rights. A warranty doesn't affect your legal right to reject a computer that was faulty when you bought it and get your money back. You can reject your PC due to a fault and request a refund. But don't delay your complaint for too long.
Sometimes the seller refers this guarantee to the buyer and rejects any responsibility for faulty goods. However, it is worth noting that the manufacturer's guarantee will not affect the buyer's right against the seller to claim a refund of the money paid for the goods under Section 14 of the Sale of Goods Act 1979 (that the goods must be of satisfactory quality and fit for their purpose). However, the buyer must not delay in informing the seller of such defects.
If the seller tries to deny his or her responsibility for your PC and tries to refer you to the manufacturer, you should not accept this excuse.
If you are unhappy with the service, try to sort it out directly with the seller (or the head office if the seller is part of a chain).