Editorial: New Yorkers need right to repair
Replacing the battery in your car used to be a simple thing. You loosened the bolts with a wrench, pulled the wires away, lifted the old battery out and put in the new one.
In many cars these days, even that simple repair has to be done by a trained mechanic because removing the battery can interfere with the computers that operate your car and void the warranty. You’ve got no choice but to take the vehicle in for service, even if you’re capable of doing the work yourself.
The issue is that many manufacturers of newer vehicles hold exclusive rights over information about vehicle operation systems that could allow someone to make the repairs themselves.
By intentionally restricting repairs of certain items to their own repair technicians or authorized repair shops, manufacturers have essentially created a monopoly for repair services. That then allows them to charge exorbitant repair prices to consumers. Concerns over this have led to efforts across the country for “right to repair” laws that lift some of these restrictions.