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Item not as described: return procedure


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I ordered a 4000mAh laptop battery from an online store. I had some trouble finding somewhere that would supply a 4000mAh battery as most online stores only sold 5200mAh batteries. However, after a while searching, I found a 4000mAh battery, albeit a bit more expensive than the 5200mAh counterparts.

I had a 5200mAh battery delivered, not a 4000mAh battery as described.

I enquired into this, and the company informed me that the 5200mAh battery should work with my laptop regardless.

It does not work. This may be because the battery is faulty or because my laptop is faulty... Regardless, I have paid over the odds for an item that is not as described. It is the lower item on this page. Note that there are two versions offered, at different mAh values: www{dot}pcbattery.co.uk/laptop_battery_desc.php?id=93521


Whether or not the item works is irrelevant, as far as I'm concerned the item was not as described.


I have a basic grasp of the distance selling regulations. The company have asked me to return the item at my cost, and they will check to see if the item is faulty.


They don't seem to understand that I am returning the item on the basis that it is not what I ordered, no matter how many times I tell them this.

They also insist I return the item to them before they do anything (refund or otherwise).


I understand that under the distance selling regulations they are obliged to pay me a full refund and that I may then either return the item (if they pay me the postage costs) or I offer to have them collect the item.


The company is based in China (I only found this out after ordering the item - I bought from a .CO.UK website to avoid this...) Since they're based in China I have offered to return the item to them if they pay me shipping costs. Still they insist I send the item back before they 'consider what to do'



1) do any distance selling regulations apply to china?

2) where are such regulations so that I can quote them to the company

3) failing this, what should my next action be?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Unfortunately my feeling is that you are on a hiding to nothing.


Firstly DSR do not apply to China based retailers (even if they have duped you by using a .co.uk website).

Even if DSR did apply you would be obliged to cover the return postage not them. You could assert that the battery is faulty and they would possibly be obliged to cover the cost of the return postage - in UK law they would definately be obliged to for any item dead on arrival but in China... I don't know. Unfortunately you do not know for certain that the battery supplied is faulty and the retailer will be able to prove that a laptop using that model of battery will be able to use a battery of (within reason) any capacity - they are correct on that point. As long as the battery is the correct type for the laptop they have substituted a higher specification product at their discretion which I imagine is acceptable in law in most countries.


They might suggest you send it back at your cost and they test it and, if found to be faulty, they will refund you for the battery and the return postage costs but realistically whether you send it back or not, whether it is faulty or not, you are likely to see no refund and my advice would be put it down to experience and simply post a review (remembering to be factually accurate so they cannot have it removed) on review websites.


Rule #1 for buying online.

Know who you are buying from before ordering. You don't necessarily need to have a physical address or telephone number necessarily but check their terms and conditions and any Help or Frequently Asked Questions pages. If they don't have any or clearly cannot write clear English or spell correctly then don't use them - they are unlikely to be in UK or even if they are, to offer a level of service that customers deserve.. if they can't spell correctly on their website information there's no attention to detail..

A decent website should outline it's policy on despatch, delivery, returns of faulty and non-faulty goods etc clearly.


Sadly there are unscrupulous 'traders' who use a .co.uk front and sell crap from China that they know won't work (I don't know the seller you used and am not suggesting they do that) in the expectation that the customer is unlikely to follow it through. It would cost you more than the price of the battery to return it to China by a method that ensures you get a signature upon receipt.


Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.... :-(



My opinions are are based on a little knowledge and my own misfortunes... take them (or don't) as you find them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Distance Selling Regulations and any other statutory protection applies to anything supplied to a consumer in the UK, wherever the seller may happen to be.


(5)For the purposes of a domestic infringement it is immaterial whether a person supplying goods or services has a place of business in the United Kingdom.




Enforcement is of course another matter.


I don't understand the objection to the 5200mAh. battery.



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