Bottom module failing AGAIN = design flaw = warranty over 2 years?

Hey all,

So my FP2’s bottom module failed again, just before I switched to FP3, fed up with this (and the too-short battery issue, and the multiple bugs).

I was thinking of buying a new one before giving the phone away, after already changing it 2 times under warranty (plus once when they’ve sent me a fully refurbished FP2 under guarantee because of core-module-draining-the-battery issue), but as it appears to be a very frequent design flaw, because of all the microphone-not-working-anymore issues, would it be possible that it would be covered by the “design flaw” warranty, which would mean over the 2 years period?

Interestingly you can only order a maximum of 2 bottom modules for FP2 per order from Fairphone shop so perhaps this may become weakest link in future longevity.

Can you provide a reference to this “design flaw” warranty?

Possibly he is referring to Product Liability?
But I doubt, this is applicable in this case, as product liability is covering injuries or damage to property caused by a safety defect of the product. As the broken bottom module is not causing any further damage or injury, no product liability - as I understand it.
COUNCIL DIRECTIVE of 25 July 1985 on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States concerning liability for defective products (85/374/EEC)


I don’t know for European law, but here is what the French government website (in French obviously, so for French customers at least I guess) says about “hidden vices”:

Especially : “Vous avez 2 ans à partir de la découverte du défaut caché pour rapporter le bien au vendeur ou le prévenir par courrier”, meaning “you have two years from the discovery of the hidden defect to bring it back or write to the seller by mail”.
“Contrairement à ce qui est prévu pour la garantie légale de conformité, c’est à vous de prouver l’existence du vice caché. Vous pouvez dans un premier temps vous appuyer sur tout élément susceptible de constituer une preuve (devis de réparation, existence de nombreuses plaintes concernant des cas de pannes similaires, expertise…).”, which means numerous similar complaints” would be a proof

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Ok, that makes some sense.
However, according to this the defect must (among other things) …

“exister au moment de l’achat.”
(“exist at the time of purchase” … says Google Translate)

Could be difficult to prove.
And the bottom modules don’t all behave in the same way. That makes it even harder to prove there’s a flaw at the time of purchase.
(I’m on my first bottom module since February 2017.)

Here is a list of regulations in different EU-countries with regard to hidden defects:

But if one already has two new bottom modules I would hardly call that a hidden defect. It would be rather quite obvious. :frowning:

Here is the linklist for the countries:
:fr: France / in English
:luxembourg: Luxembourg / in English
:es: España / in English
:it: Italia / in English
:belgium: Belgique / in English
:romania: România / in English

BTW does anyone know if Fairphone has changed the quality of the FP2 bottom module?

No it hasn’t changed. Only the tungsten in the vibration motor has become fair (it wasn’t at the start of FP2 production).


French law is derived from EU law. It works like this in whole EU AFAIK, and in The Netherlands (where Fairphone is located). Yes, design flaws can make for more than 2 years, but usually companies only start with that after a lawsuit. The point here is that a design flaw, if you can prove it, is covered under warranty beyond the 2 year period if you can reasonably expect a device to last longer than those 2 years. Also, if you receive replacement the warranty is not reset. If you buy a device and receive it on January 1 2020, you replace the bottom module via warranty on January 2021, then you only have one year of warranty left on the bottom module; not two. Btw warranty starts when you receive the device (also the right to return is fourteen days from the day you receive it).

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