Why Panasonic UK refused to fix damaged TV

UK couple in disbelief.

Panasonic has refused to fix a UK couple’s £800 ($1,485) 42-inch television because damage to the flat-screen had been reportedly caused by their smoking.

Thomas Defty (pictured) and partner Denise Head bought the TV in 2012 and thought the five-year warranty would cover any problems they encountered.

They later noticed shadowing had appeared on the screen which affected the quality but Panasonic put that down to the couple’s smoking and said this was not covered under guarantee.

Panasonic TV

Defty described the decision as “disgraceful” and vowed to never buy “another thing from Panasonic again,” according to local media reports.

He continued, “We have about 20 [cigarettes] a day, but we are not in the same room all day and we have the window open, so it’s not a smoke-filled room.”

After the shadows started creeping onto the screen, he sent pictures to the TV manufacturer. When he had not heard anything for two weeks, he phoned Panasonic who told him, after an investigation, they would not be fixing the television.

“They said they wouldn’t be fixing the TV because of nicotine smoke. It’s disgraceful. They should be replacing the screen. It’s wrong.”

A spokesman for Panasonic said the TV was taken to one of its approved service centres.

“Upon investigation and receipt of photographs, the service centre advised that there was evidence of smoke ingress and a smell was also present which seemed to have caused the shadowing in the panel.

“Unfortunately this meant that the fault was not covered by the extended five-year warranty. The exposure to nicotine is classed as an environmental cause of damage. This, unfortunately, is not something that is classed as a manufacturing defect and was therefore not covered for repair by Panasonic,” the spokesman said.

“The panel is manufactured with many layers of diffusers; when the set is exposed to air that contains nicotine this is subsequently also passed through the television and to the panel, which can then cause damage to the picture quality.

“Usually in these cases the customer is either then presented with the option of having this repaired at a charge, where applicable, or purchasing a new television set of their choice at a cost,” he added.

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