Product information concerning dismantling, repair and access to spare parts

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Requirements and Criteria Type: 
  • Technical Specification (Requirement Specifications)

Main Objective: 

Specifying requirements regarding design to enable dismantling will help to ensure that products can easily be maintained, repaired, upgraded, reproduced or redesigned, and that the materials can easily be easily separated from each other to enable reuse or material or energy recovery. The availability of spare parts that can replace typical wear parts has a strong focus in the furniture industry and is an important requirement to ensure that the product's useful life and lifespan is maximised. 

Requirement Specification: 

  • All furniture shall be marked in the factory with the name of the supplier or manufacturer, to ensure that the product information is available and can readily be linked to the product throughout its life-cycle. Alternatively, this information may be made available digitally, if it is not possible to mark the product itself. 
  • It shall be possible to replace wear parts, and it shall be possible to replace parts if they break wherever possible.
  • The supplier, or its subcontractors (manufacturers), shall offer step-by-step instructions detailing how relevant wear parts can be replaced without any damage to the furniture, and shall also have:
    1. instructions for use, and assembly instructions
    2. Service manual, including cleaning instructions, as well as maintenance and operating instructions
    3. Exploded views (illustrations) of the product showing parts which can be removed/replaced, and the tools that are required
  • Wherever possible, dismantling and repair shall be possible using standard manual tools and unskilled labour.
  • The instructions shall be made available digitally, with free access, and for a period of time corresponding to what can reasonably be expected to be the lifespan of the furniture when upgraded and repaired. 
  • Spare parts for wear parts shall at least be publicly available for purchase, or replaceable through a warranty or maintenance agreement for ten years after delivery of the product. If a particular part cannot be made available throughout the period, the supplier shall be able to replace the part with a corresponding part which performs the same function. 

Documentation of the Requirement Specification: 

In its tender, the tenderer shall specify where the documentation is available, e.g. through a reference to a link. Upon request, the supplier shall provide further instructions regarding the various points in the requirement for the specific products.

Information about the Requirement Specification: 

Designing for dismantling and repair and providing access to spare parts reduce the likelihood that furniture products will have to be disposed of prematurely as a result of damage that would normally be repairable.

This requirement is intended to give the contracting authority access to information concerning the manufacturer, instructions concerning repair, maintenance and access to spare parts. This is important to ensure that the product can have a long lifespan.

These conditions are emphasised in many tender documents and contracts, and are something that many contracting authorities value. The requirement can be stipulated in many different ways, which makes it more resource-intensive for suppliers to provide documentation. The requirement has therefore been formulated so that the information that is obtained is standardised from the various links in the value chain to ensure that requesting this information does not become expensive. A prerequisite for stipulating this requirement is that the company has internal procedures for realising the opportunities inherent in assembly, dismantling, repair, maintenance, cleaning and operation. It should also be noted that the regulations concerning CE labelling impose requirements regarding what constitutes an approved spare part and whether the part must be fitted by personnel with specialist expertise.

In the case of some procurements, such as school furniture, the rate of wear and tear on equipment can be so great that it may be appropriate to include prices of spare parts in the price evaluation in the procurement (if it is purchased as a service, a repair price/hourly rate should also be included). Experience and information about what fails should of course be included in the next tender competition, and should also be a topic in market research, market dialogue (ask suppliers, and suppliers of repair services about experiences) and an award criterion where relevant.

Published: 26. Nov 2020, Last modified: 29. Nov 2020