Right to Repair Progress
The Right to Repair is the idea that we should be able to fix every thing we own, whether that means fixing it ourselves or taking to it to a repair shop of our choice.
iFixit has been fighting for your Right to Repair since we started in 2003, and we’ve been involved in advocating for legislation in the US and the EU since 2014. Since then, the Right to Repair movement has grown around the world. But where have Right to Repair laws actually been passed?
We’ll try to keep this list up to date, but we can’t promise it’s comprehensive. Let us know if we’ve missed something you believe should be on this list!
The United States
Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly passed the nation’s first Right to Repair law, focused on automobiles, in 2012. The ballot initiative passed with 87.7% of the vote, or 2.4 million votes, and it required automobile manufacturers to make non-proprietary diagnostic and safety information available to consumers and independent repair shops. A similar legislative compromise went into effect on November 6, 2012, with differences that were reconciled in a 2013 law. After the bill passed, automotive manufacturers worked with the Auto Care Association to extend those same protections across the country via a memorandum of understanding, as long as advocates promised not to push for any more automotive state Right to Repair bills.
- Scope: Motor vehicles, including heavy-duty vehicles but excluding motorcycles, model year 2002 and later. All new motor vehicles model year 2015 and later must also have a non-proprietary interface for diagnostic and repair information.
- Effective date: January 1, 2013
The memorandum of understanding between the Auto Care Association and automotive manufacturers explicitly excluded telematics data—the systems cars use to track fuel consumption and braking, among other things. But in today’s increasingly connected vehicles, diagnostic information is more and more often passed via telematics systems. So Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly passed another initiative that would require manufacturers to provide telematics data, too. Automakers immediately sued to stop the implementation of the law, but in March 2023, Massachusetts Attorney General Andrea Joy Campbell said she will begin to enforce it despite the ongoing lawsuit.
- Scope: Motor vehicles with telematics systems, model year 2022 and later.
- Effective date: December 18, 2020
Wheelchair Right to Repair (2022)
In 2022, Colorado passed HB22-1031, Consumer Right to Repair Powered Wheelchairs. The bill gave wheelchair users and independent repair technicians access to the same repair parts, tools, and documentation that manufacturers’ authorized technicians have. Within days of its enactment, Coloradans were making use of their new freedoms, getting access to chair-adjusting software that they’d previously been denied.
- Scope: Powered wheelchairs.
- Effective date: January 1, 2023
Agricultural Right to Repair (2023)
Colorado passed the first-ever agricultural Right to Repair protection in 2023: HB23-1011, Consumer Right to Repair Agricultural Equipment. Like the powered wheelchair bill passed the year before, it protected consumers’ and independent technicians’ access to the same parts, tools, and documentation as manufacturers’ authorized technicians. When the bill goes into effect on January 1, 2024, it will bust a decades-old repair monopoly on farm equipment—a monopoly that Americans have paid for via higher food prices.
- Scope: Equipment primarily designed for use in a farm or range operation, including tractors, trailers, combines, sprayers, tillage implements, and balers.
- Effective date: January 1, 2024
Electronics Right to Repair (2022)
New York’s electronics Right to Repair bill, S4104-A/A7006-B, passed the state legislature in June 2022 with strong consumer protection—but by the time the governor signed it in December 2022, it had been weakened significantly due to manufacturer lobbying efforts. For example, manufacturers are allowed to combine inexpensive components into large assemblies, which can price repair out of reach for many consumers. They are also not required to license their intellectual property, which may mean that they can continue to block repair via software parts pairing (depending on how the state attorney general interprets the law). Still, the bill will require manufacturers to make some parts, tools, and documentation available. Manufacturers face a $500 fine per violation.
- Scope: Any product first sold and used in New York on or after July 1, 2023, with a value over $10 (adjusted annually) that depends on digital electronics, except motor vehicles, medical devices, off-road and farm equipment, home appliances, and video game consoles.
- Effective date: January 2024 (one year after official enactment)
Minnesota passed broad Right to Repair reforms as part of an omnibus bill in 2023, covering all electronics, with only a small handful of exceptions (farm equipment, video game consoles, specialized cybersecurity tools, motor vehicles, and medical devices). Otherwise, everything with a chip is covered, from smartphones and laptops to appliances and networking equipment. Manufacturers of all these products will be required to provide owners and independent repair shops with the same parts, tools, and documentation that they provide their authorized repair providers.
- Scope: Any hardware product made after July 1, 2021, that depends on embedded digital electronics, except farm equipment, video game consoles, motor vehicles, medical devices, and specialized cybersecurity tools.
- Effective date: July 1, 2024
The European Union
Repairability Index (2020)
In France, a repairability score from 0-10 has to be displayed at the point of sale for smartphones, laptops, televisions, front-load washing machines, top-load washing machines, vacuum cleaners, and pressure washers. This repairability index, which passed in 2020 in article 16-I of law n° 2020-105, requires that manufacturers self-assess their products’ ease of disassembly, the availability of repair documentation and spare parts, and the pricing of spare parts. Repair advocacy organization Spareka publishes these repair scores, to make comparison shopping easier.
- Scope: Smartphones, laptops, televisions, lawnmowers, porthole washing machines, top-load washing machines, dishwashers, vacuum cleaners, and pressure washers.
- Effective date: January 1, 2021
Drawing on the same circular economy initiative that inspired the repairability index, France has passed a number of decrees requiring the mandatory availability of spare parts. In 2022, France required that laptops and smartphones have spare parts available for five years after the last device is placed on the market. In 2023, France extended this requirement to motorized DIY and gardening tools, sports and leisure articles including bicycles and e-bikes, as well as other kinds of motorized personal transport. Manufacturers must make spare parts available promptly (with bike wheels and pedals available immediately and batteries available within two years, for instance) and those parts must remain on the market for five or ten years, depending on the part.
- Scope: Laptops, smartphones, DIY and gardening tools, sports and leisure articles, other kinds of motorized personal transport.
- Effective date: December 31, 2021
Ecodesign Regulations (2019)
Manufacturers of washing machines, dishwashers, fridges, displays, servers, and welders are required to make spare parts and maintenance information available. These ecodesign regulations, which came into effect in 2021 after passing in 2019, are strongest for professional repairers—many of the parts and much of the information are restricted to professionals. Advocates point to other limitations of the law: It doesn’t require manufacturers to make updates available throughout the lifetime of the product, and it also allows manufacturers to bundle parts into expensive assemblies (Chloe Mikolajczak points to the example of needing to replace the whole drum of a washing machine when only the bearings are bad). The EU is considering similar legislation for smartphones and tablets; draft legislation was published in 2023 and is expected to go into effect soon.
- Scope: Refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers, electronic displays (including televisions), light sources and separate control gears, external power supplies, electric motors, refrigerated vending machines, power transformers, and welding equipment.
- Effective date: October 1, 2019
Battery Removability (2023)
Starting in 2027, electronics sold in the EU must have batteries that are “designed in a way that ensures the batteries are readily removable and replaceable by the end-user.” Since batteries are consumable and generally the first thing to go bad in an electronic product, this regulation should have a huge positive impact on the repairability of devices and should help mitigate the flow of e-waste. Disposal of batteries has been controlled in the EU by a 2006 Battery Directive, which establishes acceptable battery chemistries and mandates product takeback and safe disposal. In 2023, the EU Commission, Parliament, and Council announced final text of the EU Batteries Regulation, which will supersede the previous battery Directive.
- Scope: All products with portable batteries except medical imaging equipment and devices intended to be used in a wet environment.
- Effective date: July 10, 2023
Honorable Mention: Repair Funds
Though they are not strictly “Right to Repair” laws (that is, they do not help secure owners’ right to fix things however they want), repair funds and bonuses are another area of pro-repair public policy. Given that people’s willingness to repair things is often hindered by cost, government funding for repair can help people get over that barrier. Inspired by these programs, the US city of Portland, OR, has piloted a similar program.
Austria: Repair Bonus (2017)
The city of Graz was the first in the world to offer a repair bonus scheme, offering vouchers for repairs, and many other Austrian cities followed suit. After a successful pilot in Vienna in 2020, Austria launched a nationwide repair bonus campaign in 2022: Consumers can get 50% of repair costs covered for electrical and electronic equipment, up to 200 euros. Independent repair partner companies register with the program and then accept vouchers for repairs. In the first year of the program, the bonus was claimed 525,000 times and supported 3,469 repair businesses.
Germany: Repair Bonus (2021–2022)
For several months each in 2021 and 2022, the German state of Thuringia offered a repair bonus, supporting an average of 50 repairs per day. Like the Austrian program, the bonus covered 50% of repair costs; however, the Thuringian bonus could also be used to cover the cost of a spare part for use in a Repair Café. Individuals were capped at 100 euros per year. Applications are now open for 2023. Berlin and Saxony have promised repair bonus pilot projects, and Bavaria has proposed a similar law.
France: Repair Fund (2022)
Inspired by the success of the Austrian and Thuringian repair bonuses, France introduced a repair fund as part of its anti-waste AGEC law. Beginning in September 2022, French residents could get a portion of their repair of out-of-warranty laptops, smartphones, televisions, washing machines, and lawnmowers covered. To qualify, repairs must be conducted by repairers who have received the QualiRepar label. Starting October 2023, French residents can also get government-sponsored discounts on clothing and shoe repairs.
Car manufacturers now have to provide Australian independent repair technicians with all of the data and information they need to effect repairs, including manuals, service bulletins, wiring diagrams, and technical specifications. This information should make repairs cheaper and more widely available—aftermarket experts say that 1 in 10 cars brought to repair shops were affected by information unavailability. Failure to comply carries a $10 million fine for manufacturers.
How do I get involved?
Many Right to Repair bills are under consideration around the world, and legislators need to hear from real consumers and independent repair shops about why those laws need to pass.