Friday, July 6, 2012

Is Lenovo extended warranty worth it?

It is like a health insurance. If you are older, better get health insurance. If you are young, you can take risks.

Same with laptops, cars, etc. Older laptops break down. If you wanna buy an extended warranty, don't extend it for the second year. Just buy the warranty for five years. You will recoup your money along with free labor.

I bought a lenovo T61 on 12/16/2007 for 1000 and bought 5 years next day onsite warranty for another 350. Total: 1350.

  1. 1st year  2008: No issues
  2. 2nd year 2009: No issues
  3. 3rd year 06/2010:  LCD replacement 90 + labor; August AC adapter replacement 20
  4. 4th year 01/2011:  CPU Cooling fan 60 + labor; April Palm rest replacement 20 + labor
  5. 5th year 06/2012:  Hinges 20, Keyboard 40, LCD again 90, Front lcd bezel 20 + labor
  6. 5th year 09/2012: CPU fan 60 42W2821  bottom base cover 42W3671  (new one is 120), keyboard bezel 42W3659 30 + labor (Shipped to lenovo service center on 09/20, got it back on 10/04). Yes, they waited for parts for a week or so. Thats why it took 2 weeks. Usually it is 6 business days
  7. 5th year 10/2012: Hinges 20 + LCD cover 40 + Palmrest 20 (Sent it to easyserv, as they are good at replacing surrounding parts). I sent them for hinges change. I got back with a new LCD cover and palm rest.
My warranty will be over by Dec 12, 2012.

BTW, my lapop, after 4yr 10 months of use, looks new, because of new keyboard, lcd, lcd cover, palm rest, base cover, keyboard bezel, lcd bezel, cpu fan, etc.

In 5 years, lenovo replaced 650 dollars worth of parts. If you add the hard drive, it would be 690. Even if you know how to fix the laptop, you need to wait for a week to get the parts, otherwise, you end up spending more money on the next day air shipping, which Lenovo does as part of the warranty. And who got the time to replace hinges, CPU cooling fan, etc: you need to watch some youtube and use tools, etc.

Labor costs you another 500. Totally, it costs  you 1150 if you don't know how to fix laptops.

Which one is better? A laptop that you can't fix after 2.5 years use or the warranty?

You can use two laptops in 5 years. In that case, it would be like 1700 (1000 for the first one; 700 for the second one + no piece of mind if your laptop breaks down in its second year--well, if you buy with visa/master/amex, ya may get second year warranty free from visa etc).

Or you can use the same laptop for 1350 (1000 + 350+ peace of mind)

All laptops will break down in their third year. In the fourth year, more things will break down. That's why Apple does not sell Applecare warranty for 4 or 5 years. They crunched the data on repairs and figured out that 3 years warranty makes money for Apple. If they offer a reasonable five years warranty, they will end up loosing money. If they charge 50 percent of macbook pro for 5 years warranty, people won't buy it.

I just browsed Lenovo warranties. They are not selling 5 years warranties on laptops. However, they are selling 4 years warranty along with accidental damage.

Here is the lesson: buy four/five year warranties from the manufacturer, and you will win. 2 year warranties: you loose most of the time.

1. In my case, I used my own hard drive in the third year, and kept the stock hard drive as a spare. The hard drive has not failed on me. However, if you have used the stock hard drive for four years, it would fail. So, add another 50 + labor. 
2. Everything in US dollars. Adding the dollar sign is messing up this post.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the article. It's given me plenty to think about. I'm currently considering a Z580 from Lenovo, which doesn't offer anything longer than a 3-year plan.

Laptop: $699 (after $200 coupon)
Plan: $239.40

In your opinion, is that cost worth it or does the shortened term mean I should take my chances? (Assume I have access to free labour for most minor problems).

Thanks in advance.

blaoism said...

If you buy your laptop with master, visa, and amex, credit card companies extend it for another year. Check with your credit card company, and take advantage of it by keeping the receipt. This way, you will be fine for 2 years. After that, just get another laptop.

AMT Warranty Corp said...

I guess extended warranty is a good idea for some but is another expense for others. It all depends on its coverage and the type of product you purchased. If the product is prone to damage, then I guess extended warranty is a must.

AMT Warranty