- Created: Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:03
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For those that were unable to attend the conference this year you missed the big announcement from the WTA on their new registration and healthcheck schemes for large kitchen appliances and, we think it's a marvellous idea that is long overdue!
The WTA has provided the first real update that we've had since the announcement the other week and we thought it'd be nice to share the news.
We've learned that system is currently in advanced testing and is said by the WTA to be due for imminent release, expected to go fully live this month.
There's a bit of politics here are, apparently some existing platforms out there don't allow the registration of some brands. This was an issue for the WTA as many of its members either sell or service brands that, they simply couldn't register. So, they ultimately had little option but to do it for themselves as other existing platforms couldn't be made to accommodate the needs of WTA members.
The portal allows owners to directly register an account and to manage their products, adding, deleting or amending them as required. So people can manage their own data and, being as the WTA is a not-for-profit they won't sell the data or allow it to be used for marketing so, that's good.
Then if there's a safety issue or recall like the disasters we've seen of late that seem to arrive more and more regularly these days, the WTA can notify registered owners.
The same portal also stores details of owners products that are gathered through home visits or indeed sales of new products by anyone, not just WTA members. Anyone can register any appliance in effect, for free.
Now this is something that we've banged on about for years on this website and we're not alone either as other organisations like Electrical Safety First and so on agree, frankly it's about time something was done on it so hat's off to the WTA for this innovation.
The health check is a way for owners to have their appliances inspected for any potential safety issues, to have them registered in case any develop in the future and also get advice from a professional on the condition of their appliances from wear and tear etc.
Getting a look at the machines in people's homes is probably the very best way to assess them and prevent any safety issues as best as is possible. The repair guys will figure out anything that's wrong in minutes that owners may well not notice or realise might be a problem.
Just as an example, lint build up in tumble dryers, you know that have caused a bit of a ruckus lately, that would be picked up by a service technician on almost every occasion and either sorted out or the customer made aware there was a problem.
Our view is that this is long, long overdue and could save property and potentially lives.
It could also help owners feel safe with the appliances in their homes after all the negative press lately.
The WTA are in a unique position in that, as it is all independent service companies they can assess the general condition of virtually any appliance and, if required usually repair it or advise on what owners should do. Often they can even give you a good indication of how much life is left in them.
The health check program is exclusively available to WTA members and we get it, there has to be some quality control and that's absolutely fine in our book. After all, you don't want people that haven't a clue what they're doing offering such a service and therefore we think that this is a very sensible way to proceed here.
For more on these new schemes or, if you have any questions, please use the WTA member's forum where more information for members can be provided until the official launch later this month.