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How to make a seller stand behind a warranty

HOUSTON – When you make a big purchase, the seller generally makes a promise to stand behind their work or product. It's called a warranty.

But when something goes wrong, and you can't get your seller to fix the problem, you have some options. 

  • Before any work is started, make sure you get a copy of the warranty and what it covers in writing. What are the instructions for reporting a problem with the product or service if you have one?
  • Follow those directions and contact the seller immediately when you notice any issues that need repair or attention. Document your calls and communications with the seller. Request repairs within a reasonable time (generally 7-10 business days). 
  • If the seller is unresponsive or refuses to make the repairs covered by your warranty, file a written complaint to the Texas Attorney General's Office. Copy the business owner on this letter or form.  
  • File a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. They will contact the company and try to help resolve the issue. 
  • Send a written complaint to consumer expert Amy Davis at adavis@kprc.com or mail it to 8181 Southwest Freeway, Houston, TX 77074. Copying the seller or company is sometimes all it takes for them to resolve your issue.  
  • If all of these fail, you might consider small claims court, or even better, the Dispute Resolution Center in the county where you live. Harris County's Dispute Resolution Center helps you mediate issues. The outcome is binding, just like a ruling in small claims court. Services are free to Harris County residents.