While calls to fight against planned obsolescence become more insistent and deconfinement takes place in a context of great economic uncertainty, home appliance repairer say they are busier than ever. Look at an old profession still relevant today. Yan Candied arrives at his first client of the day. On average, depending on the complexity of the cases, he visits a dozen each day. “It’s crazy, it just keeps on going. If we could work seven days a week, year round, we would have work. “
In this profession for 22 years, he is now president of Vincent Lorillard Inc., a household appliance repair company founded in 1920 in Montreal by his great-grandfather.
This washer that he is about to examine, he has already repaired it a few times. With the spinning problems described by his client, the technician does not have a good feeling. As he dismantles the washer panel, the lady recounts how her fridge died during confinement. She hopes to have better luck with her washer, a 22-year-old Eurodesign appliance.
With the joint and the bearing, he calculates $ 1000. And that’s without counting the workforce. Unsurprisingly, the client decides to mourn her washer. Given the age of the device, the bill is disproportionate. However, she will have to pay the technician for his trip.
Yan Candie notes, however, that people are more and more inclined to choose repair, for reasons that are sometimes ecological, sometimes economic or because they do not want to get rid of their device, old but faithful.
“Why throw away something that can still be useful? », Summarizes Michel Parent, a customer who called on Yan Candie to repair his dishwasher which no longer turned on. A fuse problem that resolved quickly. “Another saved! “, Then launched the technician.
But how much is it worth, economically speaking, to save a household appliance? “Up to 75% of its value, believes Yan Candie. But it depends on the type of device. He cites as an example a front-end washer, from a Korean brand, whose electronic control would have broken after eight years, a repair of about $ 450, according to him. “As a technician, you know that these washers last about eight to ten years. In cases like this, I will explain it to the client. There are other devices for which I would say: yes, put $ 400 and see you in five years. We have to live with that, it’s not easy. “
Later that day, he will explain to a customer whose dishwasher in her 20s does not clean well, that investing even $ 125 to replace the defective part is a decision that does not impose itself immediately. “If you stayed here, I would say why not,” he explains to the woman who is due to move out shortly. But devices don’t like to be lugged around. If you bang the engine and it breaks… And the part could be discontinued… Think about it. “
Soon a law against planned obsolescence?
Last year, the independent deputy Guy Ouellette tabled in the National Assembly a private bill to fight against the planned obsolescence of goods, developed by students of the University of Sherbrook concerned about this issue. The CAQ did not follow up, but mandated to conduct a public consultation on “the durability, reparability and obsolescence of consumer goods” such as household appliances, for example. In particular, it was to be a question of the minimum operating life of certain goods, the availability of parts and repair services as well as the imposition of criminal penalties on companies that use processes to limit the life of their products. .
The consultation being completed, the OPC is analyzing the views submitted to it and must make its recommendations to the Minister of Justice in the coming months, said its spokesperson, Charles Tanguy.