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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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Construction materials - almost PLN 50 million penalty for Yetico

< previous | next > 14.11.2019

Construction materials - almost PLN 50 million penalty for Yetico
  • Shorter foamed polystyrene boards durability and worse thermal insulation parameters than declared by the manufacturer.
  • The Yetico company misled consumers as to the properties of its products, as a result, customers could suffer significant losses.
  • UOKiK imposed on Yetico the highest fine in history for violating consumer interests - almost PLN 50 million.

The Yetico company from Olsztyn is a producer of construction products, mainly foamed polystyrene boards, which are used to insulate buildings. In the years 2014-2016, construction supervision authorities carried out inspections, which showed that some Yetico products have worse properties than declared by the manufacturer. The most irregularities concerned 4 types of foamed polystyrene boards. Alpha Fasada and Gamma Passive Fasada had lower levels of tensile strength perpendicular to panel surface than indicated by Yetico, and therefore could be less durable. Aqua EPS P120  turned out to be less resistant against compressive stress than the manufacturer assured, which is especially important for such surfaces as roofs or floors. While Beta Fasada had a higher thermal conductivity coefficient, which means faster loss of heat.

- We sporadically intervene in the market of building materials, which is subject to the supervision of specialized bodies. We initiated the proceedings because the scale of the irregularities detected was very large, and Yetico was launching subsequent batches with incorrect parameters. Such activities have impact on consumers. False information about important parameters of foamed polystyrene boards could have exposed people who insulated their homes to specific losses, e.g. high heating bills or the costs of dismantling a defective product - says Marek Niechciał, president of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection.

False information about the characteristics of foamed polystyrene boards was found in the declarations of performance drawn up by Yetico. Consumers could also see them, among others on product packaging, on the manufacturer's website or in advertising materials.

For unfair market practices consisting in misleading consumers regarding the parameters of 4 types of foamed polystyrene boards, UOKiK imposed a fine of PLN 50 million on Yetico (PLN 49 745 460). This is the highest sanction for violating collective consumer interests in the office's history.

Decision is not binding. The entrepreneur has appealed against the decision to court. Once decision becomes final, it will become a preliminary ruling, which will make it easier for consumers to seek claims in the courts.

When you buy construction products, remember:

  • Check if the product has the CE marking or construction mark on it. By affixing the marking, the manufacturer indicates that he takes responsibility for the compliance of the construction product with the declared characteristics.
  • Ask at the place of product availability for the declaration of performance (the manufacturer must ensure that a copy of it - in paper or electronic form - is provided with every product). The declaration is the manufacturer's statement that the product actually has the characteristics specified in this document.
  • See the website of the General Office of Building Control, which publishes the results of testing construction samples (https://www.gunb.gov.pl/probki) as well as National List of Challenged Construction Products maintained by GOBC (https://www.gunb.gov.pl/strona/czesc-2).
  • If you bought a defective product, make a complaint to the seller. You have 2 years from the date of purchase. You can request a repair, replacement, price reduction or even a refund of the entire amount paid.
  • If you suspect that a construction product does not have the declared properties, notify the Voivodship Inspectorate for Construction Supervision (contacts are available at: https://www.gunb.gov.pl/winb). 

Consumer service:

Phone: 801 440 220 or 22 290 89 16 – consumer helpline
E-mail: [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnBs[ECODE]
Consumers’ ombudsmen – in your town or district
Financial Ombudsman – www.rf.gov.pl – when a complaint is rejected
Regional Consumer’s Centres: 22 299 60 90 – Dlakonsumenta.pl

Additional information for the media:

UOKiK Press Office
Pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa, Poland
Phone +48 695 902 088, +48 22 55 60 246
E-mail: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]
Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

Attached files

 

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