Buying Electrical Items Online #DontBeElectricked

6 Things To Consider When Buying Electrical Items Online #DontBeElectricked

With the rise of online businesses and sellers, there’s a greater risk of buying a faulty or bogus product. It is reported that the number of counterfeit items sold in the last year has increased by 12%! This comes as no surprise because it’s easy to set up a trader account on many popular sites, such as Amazon Marketplace, eBay and Wish. There’s also pretty much no regulation in place to prevent individuals from selling counterfeit or faulty electrical products.

However, Electrical Safety First are currently campaigning around the safety of electrical items bought online in order to prevent injury or death caused by dodgy items – be sure to sign the petition here.

They’ve also got a pretty poignant video to support the #DontBeElectricked campaign:

So, you’re probably thinking about how you can prevent your dud purchase from ending up deadly? Here are some things to consider before clicking the purchase button on that electrical item you’ve had in your basket!

Check the voltage

It is a legal requirement for all electrical products to be tested, including the voltage that they operate at, in order to certify them with CE marking. This ensures that they are safe to use and do not pose a risk of injury or cause damage to property in the event of a fire. The UK’s usual domestic voltage is 230V/50Hz and this is what most electrical products function at.

Ensure availability of seller details

With the increase in online businesses, it’s important to purchase from an official retailer or a trusted seller. This will not only ensure that you are purchasing a product in full working order and good condition, but it will also keep you covered with a warranty if things go wrong! Therefore, it’s important to check the seller’s details and also have a read through of their T&C’s and returns policies.

Pay safely and securely

When it comes to purchasing from an online business, make sure transactions are carried out in a secure manner. The best way to check this is by looking to see if the web browser has a green padlock displayed at the start of the web address. This means that your payment details are encrypted and your details are not at risk of being leaked to third parties.

Do a price check

If you’ve come across an electrical product at a bargain price from a virtually new business or seller, chances are that it’s faulty or not genuine. Therefore, it’s best to do a price check on the internet before you purchase any electrical goods, in order to ensure that it’s totally legit. This will also save you from hassle down the line in case of any potential issues with the product!

Use online review sites

If something looks too good to be true, it probably is. Therefore, it’s a good idea to look up reviews relating to the business or seller you are interested in buying from. From reading user experiences from other customers, you can decipher whether the product on offer is fraudulent or genuine.

Know your rights

Having a clear understanding of your consumer rights is important for every single person in today’s day and age. It’s worth knowing that businesses and sellers are required to provide full details of the product they are selling and customers normally have a 14 day return window from the date of purchase, although this can vary depending on where an item has been purchased. Also, if you use a credit card to spend £100 or more on an item, you can hold both the seller and credit card company liable if something goes wrong with the transaction.

The bottom line

It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and what better way to do this by taking extra precautions before purchasing an electrical item online? To take it one step further, be sure to do your part in changing the regulations around selling faulty or counterfeit electrical items online by signing the petition here.

Until next time.

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