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Dangers of buying stoves online

The Internet can help you save money and buy products, such as wood burning stoves or other types of solid fuel stoves, at lower prices.

But it may come at a price you don’t expect, as there can be inherent dangers if your choice is to buy a stove (or any appliance) from an Internet-only shop.

Stoves are quite technical pieces of furniture that must be installed by a competent person, such as a HETAS approved engineer, and in accordance with the legally binding Building Regulations.

When the correct stove is chosen, and correctly installed, you will also need a certificate of installation when you sell your house or should you ever have an insurance claim relating to the stove’s installation. Buying online can work against these key requirements.

For example, some online sellers of stoves and multi-fuel appliances, never mention the stove’s minimum guarantees or indicate the availability of spare parts should you ever need them.

Sometimes the stoves themselves have not been tested or certified by an accredited agency such as HETAS, there can be long delivery times, high delivery charges and there may be no site visits if anything goes wrong. Problems do occur and, for your own peace of mind, you should ensure that ongoing support will be available.

It’s also worth noting that if you buy a stove from a remote seller then you enter into a sales contract with them rather than the "bricks and mortar" shop or even the original manufacturer of that stove. And in turn this can lead to all kinds of complications if things go wrong.

So, when you come down to it, the savings you may think you’re making by buying a wood burning or multi-fuel stove (or even a new fireplace) online can be outweighed by a lack of after sales service.

Know your rights!

You still have a "cooling off" period when you buy a stove.

Your purchase is covered by the Department for Business Innovation & Skills ‘Consumer Contracts Information, Cancellation & Additional Charges’ Regulations and by the 'Consumer Rights Act 2015'

  • You have a "cooling-off" period of fourteen working days
  • You may cancel the services started in the cancellation period.
  • You must be given clear information, including details of the goods offered, delivery arrangements and payment, the supplier's details and (your) cancellation right before you buy
  • The seller must also provide this information to you in writing.
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