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Is anybody responsible?(5 posts)

Is anybody responsible?nee Spoke Wrench
Jan 11, 2002 11:36 AM
Since the Schwinn and GT bankrupcies, who if anyone is holding the bag for stuff like frame warranties? I've read an opinion that the LBS is responsible for the whole bike, but the LBS didn't design, spec. the materials or manufacture the frame.
Complicated SubjectDCP
Jan 11, 2002 12:20 PM
Retailers usually do warrant products they sell but they do not make. There are some basic product warranties implied by law in a sale, but a retailer usually disclaims them to the extent possible in its sale documents. Even it did not, they might not help too much as they are pretty basic stuff. Depends on how big the problem is. Disclaimers of implied warranties have to be conspicuous to be effective.

Pacific might have assumed the warranty obligations (I doubt it) when it bought the Schwinn/GT assets. Even if it did not, Pacific might good will some repairs or parts to keep the brand strong. Couldn't hurt to ask.

Responsibility for injury arising from a product failure is a difference subject and the rules there are very different.
re: Is anybody responsible?BianchiRacer26
Jan 12, 2002 9:06 AM
Bicycles might be different, but in the motorcycle world all warranties are through the manufacturer. The motorcycle dealer may perform the warranty work, but the dealer then bills the manufacturer for the repairs. If the dealer cannot recover it's expenses from the manufacturer then it may good-will the repairs but is not obligated to do so. I know when I bought both my bicycles I received no warranty from my LBS (except for adjustments and such), the warranty I got was from the manufacturer itself (look inside your owner's manual). I have a good enough relationship with my LBS that I beleive they would warranty most repairs but for things like repairing or replacing a frame or other expensive repairs they would be hesitant. The LBS's are getting screwed just like the consumers. They are stuck in the middle of pleasing customers and trying not to go broke fixing bicycles that GT/Schwinn should be paying to fix.
re: Is anybody responsible?fuzzybunnies
Jan 12, 2002 9:16 PM
Pacific has decreed that all schwinn/gt bikes are now warrentied for one year only so your LBS can still back up the parts warrenty. As for the frame that's at the discretion of the shop the bike came from. Where I work we're backing up the frame warrenty and usually replacing with GT frames from the bikes we weren't able to get rid of. Russ
state law and warrantiesDog
Jan 14, 2002 9:07 AM
Most states have adopted some version of the Uniform Commercial Code, which usually applies to sales of goods. The UCC implies some warranties by law, which could be supplemented by other laws, express warrantied, or disclaimed expressly. The implied warranties are from the "seller", which could include the retailer and/or manufacturer.

I've never seen a bike retailer disclaim warranties. If they do not, then you'll get the full implied warranties, even if not the express warranties. Implied warranties may include "merchantibility", "fitness for a particular purpose," and others.

Express warranties are merely a contract. If the contracting party is bankrupt, likely you'll have no relief. There may be an issue whether the retailer is a party to an express warranty originating from the manufacturer. The actual seller may be, but likely not another retailer of the same make.

There is a difference between warranty law and product liability law. Getting a repair or replacement is one thing; if you are injured as a result of a defective product, that is something else. The relief from the latter is a bit broader than repair warranty.

If it were me, I would first make a warranty claim with a retailer. They may honor some type of warranty as a matter of good business, even if not required. If you suspect a warranty issue (e.g., crack in frame), I would not delay.