Consumer rights under warranty and guarantee

What about that warranty and guarantee, or what are the consumer’s rights when a washing machine breaks down?

Let us assume that our washing machine refuses to work, which begs the question: what rights do consumers have in such a situation? Let us therefore take a closer look at warranty and guarantee issues.

The warranty is the foundation of the consumer’s rights, protecting him against defective products.

Let’s remind ourselves what the whole warranty thing is in general. In the simplest terms, it is the seller’s liability for defects in the thing sold. The new amendment introduced by the amendment of the Consumer Rights Act of 1 January 2023. applies to contracts obliging the transfer of ownership of goods to the consumer. The legislator, while amending the provisions, also changed their legal source. Let us remember that from January 2023. the interested parties will use the Consumer Rights Act and not, as before, the provisions regulated in the Act of 23 April 1964. – Civil Code.

Distinguishing the concept of non-conformity of goods with the contract.

According to these provisions, goods in conformity with the contract are goods that meet certain criteria. These include, among other things, the description, the type, as well as its suitability for a specific purpose or for the purposes for which it is usually used. At the same time, it should be mentioned that these goods should be delivered to the consumer with packaging, accessories and instructions. As we can see, this is only a part of a much larger catalogue of premises about the conformity of goods with the contract. The legislator decided to do so in order to provide us with a more complete protection under the warranty. It should be noted that the trader will not be liable for the lack of conformity of the goods with the contract if the consumer was expressly informed that a specific characteristic of the goods, deviates from the requirements of conformity with the contract or expressly and specifically accepted the lack of a certain characteristic of the goods.

Consumer rights under warranty.

So let us translate theory into practice. If our newly purchased washing machine turns out to be defective or not in conformity with the contract, we have the right to demand its repair or replacement, and only after the refusal of the seller, the possibility of lowering the price or withdrawing from the contract. When submitting a claim for defects in goods, the seller is required to respond within 14 days, failure to do so resulting in the recognition of this claim in the scope and content mentioned in the complaint.

Guarantee as additional consumer protection.

A guarantee is an obligation on the part of the seller or manufacturer to repair or replace the goods free of charge should any defects become apparent during use. It provides a period of protection for the purchased product, which depends on the will of the guarantor. It is assumed to be 2 years, from the date of delivery of the goods to the consumer. When the guarantor replaces the defective product with a new one, or when the guarantor makes substantial repairs, it will open a new guarantee period. In other cases, the guarantee is extended by the time the consumer was not able to use the goods due to the complaint.

Open catalogue of guarantor obligations

The Civil Code does not define a general catalogue of the guarantor’s obligations towards the buyer. The scope of its responsibility is regulated by the warranty statement, whereby the guarantor voluntarily and independently defines its obligations. Most often, the statement covers the repair or replacement of the goods under the guarantee.


In the event of problems with our purchased washing machine, we are not helpless. The law provides us with instruments that protect our rights as consumers. If goods are found to be defective, the warranty provides the basis for asserting our claims against the seller. The guarantee, on the other hand, is an add-on that increases this protection.

One of the key steps, if not the most important one, is to keep the receipt or other proof of purchase to help solve the problem if our washing machine decides to refuse to serve us.

Golden advice from our team: When reporting problems with your washing machine, always invoke the warranty!

Author: Jarosław Rudy, Zuzanna Bierut


Jarosław Rudy

Managing Partner, Attorney at Law, Certified ATS Adviser

Jarosław Rudy