Managing Liability Due to Defective Products (Originally published in "ASHRAE Journal")


Is an HVAC contractor legally responsible for damage caused when a product (such as a condensate pump) fails due to a manufacturing defect? Generally, the answer is "yes."

This article analyzes the potential bases of liability for defective products that HVAC contractors supply and install. It also makes recommendations for reducing risk by 1) modifying work practices to include backup or redundant protection in the event of product failure; 2) purchasing liability insurance, 3) evaluating the risks and benefits of contractual language, and 4) considering legal recourse.

Reproduced with the permission of ASHRAE.

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