What are the types of product defects?

Discover the three main types of product defects. Learn how each differs from the others and the unique aspects used to prove liability based on the defect.

Product defects occur all the time. They can happen for many reasons, but most defects will fit into one of three categories. These three main type of product defects are the most common claims used in product liability cases. When a product is not made correctly or has some other defect that leads to a consumer being injured, the manufacturer is almost always found at fault.

3 categories of product defects

Veracity Insurance outlines the three types of product defects consumers may see in the products they buy. The first is a defect in the design of the product. This is something that was just designed wrong, whether intentional or unintentional. It is a dangerous product regardless of how it is used or how it is made. It is not a result of a mistake during manufacturing. Some examples would be a product that catches on fire when set at the highest setting. It is reasonable for a consumer to believe that using the product on any setting is fine, so this defect has the potential to cause many serious injuries.

The second type of defect is a failure to warn or provide adequate instructions. This is when the product may not be dangerous or have any issues with it, but the manufacturer did not provide the consumer with enough information to properly use the product so as not to be injured when using it. Warning labels are often used because of issues with products that were used incorrectly in the past. For example, consumers may think it is perfectly fine to use hair dye on their eyebrows if the hair dye instructions do not contain a warning that this is not an acceptable use for the product. This could lead to blindness and other eye injuries.

The final defect is caused by the manufacturing process. This is when something goes wrong when the product is being made. For example, if during the manufacturing of a car, the airbags are not installed when they should have been, this is a manufacturing defect situation.

Responsibility for defects

Anyone involved in the creation of a product can be held liable for a defect. According to Cornell Law School, the basis for a personal injury claim based on product liability lies is proving a product was sold to a consumer, used by the consumer in the way instructed by the manufacturer and the product caused injury to the consumer. This liability is based on the negligence of the manufacturer and may be unintentional.

Recalls are common because issues arise often with products that have been sold or put on the market. It is tough to catch every occurrence of a defect before products are sold to consumers. However, the liability still lies with the manufacturer when a product is used as directed. If you have been injured due to a defective product, you may want to consult with Surovell Isaacs & Levy PLC.