Marc Gander - The Consumer Survival Handbook


A 220 page introduction to all things consumer related by our own BankFodder.

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Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide


An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

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  1. #1
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    Default Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    The cord on my Velux blackout blind wore through plastic runners of the blinds. The problem only became apparent after 4-5 years when the cord frayed on the sharp edges and jammed the blind.

    Velux are saying I'm out of the 3-year warranty (the blind is about 5 years old). I'm saying that the blind was never fit for purpose as the plastic has clearly worn gradually from the time the blind was installed.

    As well as opinions on whether I have a case, I'd be interested if people could check any blackout blinds they have for similar issues. It's a bit tricky to see as you have to look from the outside of the window!

    The attached photo shows the two cords (one damaged) emerging from the end of the aluminium strip that runs across the bottom of the blind material. The worn groove can clearly be seen where the cord used to run. At the other end of the strip, the plastic wore all the way through and the cord snagged and broke on the aluminium.

    It would have been a relatively cheap and easy repair if the problem had been spotted before the plastic wore all the way through, so worth a look if you have a Velux blind. A replacement is going to cost me 120 - they're not cheap!

    veluxWorn.jpeg


  2. #2
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Hi steve

    Have a read of 12 and 13 in my signature. Your first port of call is the Retailer, not the manufacturer.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Hi Reb.
    Can you approve Steve's attachment please? (Now that sounds so wrong!!!!!)
    Can you please approve the attached photo in Steves post? (That's better)



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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Done.

    Quote Originally Posted by freakyleaky View Post
    Hi Reb.
    Can you approve Steve's attachment please? (Now that sounds so wrong!!!!!)
    Can you please approve the attached photo in Steves post? (That's better)


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  5. #5
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rebel11 View Post
    Done.
    There's nothing like being blessed with a good attachment!

    ))


  6. #6
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bang! View Post
    There's nothing like being blessed with a good attachment!

    ))
    And having it officially approved

    (sorry for the hijack Steve)

    Will take a look at pics now.
    I have fitted loads of velux windows and have not come across probs with the blind mechanism as yet.


  7. #7
    Royalties Account Holder freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky's Avatar



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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    It looks to me as if the sheathing has come away completely on one of the cords. This would only happen if something sharp was rubbing against it every time it was used. Once the sheathing has come away then that is when the inner cable will do the damage shown in the pic.
    It's either a fault within the area where the cables run which can't be seen or something has been damaged during installation.

    Either way it would be hard to prove whether it was manufacturing fault or installation problem.
    I think you'll have a fight on your hands but it's certainly worth going to the retailer first and see what they have to say. As you say they are not cheap to replace.
    What size is the window BTW?


  8. #8
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    freakyleaky,

    Well observed. But the sheathing came away as a *result* of the failure of the plastic.

    There are two cords either side of the blind. They cross over from one side of the blind to the other by passing through the lenght of the aluminium strip. This photo is of the hole where one cord enters and the other exits.

    The undamaged cord to the left goes through the groove you can see. The damaged cord (on the right) went through a groove on the other end.

    At the other end, the groove was worn all the way through the plastic. At this point (it seems) the plastic or aluminium damaged the cord. The blind stopped working when the cord was damaged because the outer sheath puckered up and got jammed in the groove.

    rebel1, while I believe I got the blind from Velux direct, does the manufacturer then not have responsibility if the supplier cannot be proven or has gone bust? (There is probably a receipt somewhere in the Jurassic layer of my receipts box.)


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    If the Retailer has gone bust, then the manufacturer is the next port of call.

    'rebel1, while I believe I got the blind from Velux direct, does the manufacturer then not have responsibility if the supplier cannot be proven or has gone bust? (There is probably a receipt somewhere in the Jurassic layer of my receipts box.)'

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  10. #10
    Royalties Account Holder freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky's Avatar



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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    There must have been a sharp edge somewhere on the plastic to start with then.
    As I've said I think it will be hard to prove one way or the other as to fitting or manufacturing fault but don't give up.
    How big is the window?


  11. #11
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    The window is about 0.8m by 1.2m (a GGL 3). My theory is to why the problem is not so widespread is that 1) the blind is an accessible blind in a bedroom so is used daily 2) the blind is large so there is more force and friction when raising and lowering it and 3) the window faces directly south so the plastic will get warm (which will perhaps soften it).

    A picture of the other side shows a hint of the slightly jagged plastic that was exposed when the plastic broke:


    veluxWorn2.jpg

    PS It doesn't show up well because the image has been shrunk. Basically the plastic snapped just above the string. This exposed a sharp edge on which the string frayed.

    It did occur to me that the design *requires* a degree of friction. It's friction that prevents the blind from automatically winding itself closed.

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  12. #12
    Royalties Account Holder freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky Authoritative freakyleaky's Avatar



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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Can't see new pics yet but I suspect the reasons you give may have something to do with the problem.
    I still think there must have been an underlying hidden fault somewhere to cause the damage.

    It may be worth perusing as long as you don't mind the stress of the chase but I wouldn't hold my breath.
    On the other hand you could put it down to bad experience and buy a new one off ebay for around 40.


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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    How about an accidental damage claim on the house insurance?


  14. #14
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Quote Originally Posted by assisted blonde View Post
    How about an accidental damage claim on the house insurance?
    Now there's an idea!!
    Good thinking AB.


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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    I'm going to play it slow. The blind works without the cords - though without the cords it always rolls shut. I had to attach a bit of string and a hook so it can be held closed.

    I've had a hint on another website that someone else has had a similar problem. Hopefully someone will google this thread and I'll get another report I also fitted the same blind for a friend at about the same time, so I'll have a look at his next time I visit. If I find a couple of examples I'll be in a stronger position to argue.

    I don't think an insurance claim would wash - I'm too honest! Besides, it's the principle I'm more concerned about. The b***ing wood around the glass split a few years back and they were quoting me 1400 for a replacement (because it's an older model that they don't support so they'd have had to replace the lot including frame and flashing). Thankfully I managed to hold it together with about 20 screws into the wood, but I'm not impressed by them when I've plenty of experience of buying brand new replacement bits for windows twice its age. So they owe me I think.


  16. #16
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Dear All,
    See my words below for my woes of Velux blinds!! Originally started via the link below:
    Link via h t t p : / / zebbakes.com/2011/06/21/how-to-uninstall-a-velux-black-out-blind/

    22/4/12: One of the grey plastic cord guides on the cartridge ends has broken from a groove being carved into it over time from the cord, which then frayed and broke!. The cords also seems to be attached into a black plastic plate that fits on the end of the cartridge, and having taken it all apart we cannot workout how to disengage it.
    We have taken lots of photos and now plan to e-mail them to Velux followed by phone callicon. It would be good to be able to show you but I can’t see how to do it?
    I am hoping they have the spare parts we need otherwise it means a whole new blind – not cheap.

    10/6/12: Velux were most unhelpful – surprise, surprise. They wouldn’t supply the expensive parts free as the blind was more than 3 years old, despite the fact that I am sure the cords frayed and failed due to a design fault. Just waiting for the other blind in the same room to go the same way!
    Due to the expense of the parts we opted to buy a complete new blind but not from Velux direct as – guess what – they were more expensive. Also opted for a plain colour so that it is easier to match to when the other goes and we have to replace that one too.
    Life has a habit of sucking money out of my bank account!
    Just been reading through the posts again. I have the replacements parts info (with part numbers) from Velux if anyone is interested + photos of how my cords frayed and the groove that formed on the ends the bottom edge of the blind.

    Attached Images

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Dear All,
    In my previous post I attached 5 pictures which are pending approval. In this post I have attached a pair of Velux parts diagram. No help of course as they still cost far too much to repair the thing and ended up buying a new blind! Grrr
    Velux blinds parts numbers 1.gif
    Velux blinds parts numbers 2.gif

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  18. #18
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    Thanks, TJToms, for those photos! They could be very useful to me.


  19. #19
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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    If you get any joy out of Velux let me know! They point blank denied any responsibility that the blind design was defect.
    I think there is a definite flaw causing the cord to fray and leading to expensive replacement parts or a whole new blind. Neither option was very acceptable but I needed the blind quick as it was in my daughters bedroom so opted for the new one. Didn't order from Velux though - can get genuine Velux much cheaper on other sites!


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    Default Re: Do Velux black-out blinds have a design flaw?

    just checked our blackout blind no wear yet

    Please note:
    • I am employed in the IT sector of a high street retail chain but am not posting in any official capacity,so therefore any comments,suggestions or opinions are expressly personal ones and should not be viewed as an endorsement or with agreement of any company.
    • i am not legal trained in any form.
    • I have many experiences in life and do often use these in my posts
    if ive been helpful kick my scales, if ive been unhelpful kick the scales of the person more helpful
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