Does Apple check serial numbers for returns?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by slapple, Dec 7, 2011.

  1. slapple macrumors 6502

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    #1
    My new MBP has a dead pixel. But since it is a custom configured one (hi-res anti-glare screen, and 7200 RPM hard drive), I doubt the local Apple store will have any in stock that I can exchange with.

    Also, I bought it with a credit card that was offering 10% cashback a couple weeks ago, so I don't want to just return it and buy a new one. If I did that, I'd lose out on the 10% cashback.

    So I'm wondering if I can order second MBP which hopefully won't have any problems, and then I'll return the first MBP under the second order. If Apple doesn't check serial numbers, then I'll be able to do that. If they do check serial numbers, then I won't be able to do that.

    So does anyone know if they check serial numbers on returns?
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #2
    Yes, they definitely check serial numbers, and what you're suggesting is fraud. Apple won't replace a computer for a dead pixel, anyway.
     
  3. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    Of course they check serial numbers. You are out of luck, I think.
     
  4. Irock619 macrumors 68000

    Irock619

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    #4
    If it is within the 14 days you should be able to return the MBP once your custom order comes into the store. They should do an even swap with no price changes. Or worse case scenario they just order a new screen and fix it when it comes in.
     
  5. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    According to Apple there is no meaningful defect in his screen.
     
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #6
    They won't repair a screen for a dead pixel.
     
  7. thundersteele macrumors 68030

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    #7
    They will, since he's within the 14 days return period. They might not replace it directly in the store (since it's custom built anyways), but he can always give it back and buy a new one.

    @slapple: Go to the nearest apple store and explain your problem. They might be able to help you, but I'm not sure if they will. Otherwise, either you have to live with the dead pixel or with loosing the 10% cash back.
     
  8. Irock619 macrumors 68000

    Irock619

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    #8
    Correct but he can still return it within 14 days correct? And if he tells them why he's returning it then they might just swap it out under warranty, depending on which genius he talks to :) I dented my MBP 2 weeks after buying it and they repaired it free of charge. I assume they would do the same for a dead pixel that the customer was not responsible for.

    OP: I am confused why you are worried about serial numbers.
     
  9. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    While it is always at the discretion of your Apple employee, it is pretty unlikely.

    If he returns it, he would have to mail it in (since it is a CTO model) and thus it would likely end up being credited to his card, then he would be charged again when he ordered the second.

    Its worth a shot, but fraud is fraud.
     
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #10
    If it was a BTO model, they can't swap it in the store. It must be returned to Apple. Also, a single dead pixel is not considered enough of a defect to be replaced under warranty. Also, the store did you a favor, since warranty doesn't cover damage due to accidents.
     
  11. mgartner0622 macrumors 65816

    mgartner0622

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    #11
    It's actually quite likely. Once they get the package back, it is scanned in via the bar code on the box. Then the machine is checked for damage, and the unit's serial number and hardware is verified to be the same one on the box, i.e. the one that was originally sent out.
    How do I know? One of the people I work with used to process returns for Apple.
     
  12. gngan macrumors 68000

    gngan

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    #12
    Of cause they will check the serial number. Isn't that the point of having serial number? Stop being cheap.
     
  13. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    I think you misunderstood me. I was suggesting that it was worth a shot to go visit a genius and see if they would replace the display clamshell under warranty, NOT that it was worth a shot trying to fraudulently return the computer.

    If you read my previous post you would see that I confirm (unequivocally) your assertion that Apple DOES check the serial number.
     
  14. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

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    #14
    Fraud? Let's not get a overly dramatic here.

    As for "only" one bad pixel? That is one too many for me and I would not accept it--this is not a $200 Acer netbook. I would expect a replacement and certainly no restocking fee. If Apple didn't agree my credit card company will. But the one time I wanted a replacement because of 2 bad pixels it was done. No begging. They just did it. It's only internal policy and even that states that leeway is possible (i.e., must explain that replacement may also have bad pixels).



    Michael
     
  15. thundersteele macrumors 68030

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    #15
    Well, ordering a new laptop and returning the old one in the packaging of the new one would be fraud.

    We all agree that apple would and will take back a laptop within the 14 days, whether or not it has a dead pixel. They might not replace it, but they will take it back, and the OP can buy a new one. It's only here where the OPs problems start. He doesn't want to return it, because that will cost him the 10% cash back he got on the purchase. He can't get it exchanged in store, since it's a BTO.

    Now, the best solution would be to call Apple, explain the problem, and ask if they could send a new macbook. They might do it in order to keep their customer satisfied.
    If they don't agree to this, which is possible since a single dead pixel is not considered a defect, he either has to return it and loose the cashback, or live with the pixel.
     
  16. Tinmania macrumors 68040

    Tinmania

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    #16
    Yea I guess I can see that. I was thinking he would be returning one unopened so no harm done to Apple (not that they would take that with a mismatched SN).



    Michael
     
  17. vitzr macrumors 68030

    vitzr

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    California
    #17
    I've had excellent results when having to return an Apple computer.

    However as mentioned earlier, it's been my experience that one bad pixel does not qualify. Usually there has to be a cluster that is quite noticeable before any manufacturer will return for a pixel issue.

    Here are some useful links:
    http://store.apple.com/us/help/returns_refund
    http://store.apple.com/us/help/returns_refund#policy
    http://store.apple.com/us/help/returns_refund#policytwo
    http://store.apple.com/us/browse/open/salespolicies
     
  18. slapple thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #18
    Sorry if I was not clear in my original post. I was not suggesting returning the old one in the new one's box. I was suggesting putting the old MBP back into the old MBP's box, and then returning it with the new one's invoice/packing slip. Does Apple record the serial numbers they send out with each order number?
     
  19. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #19
    Did you read the thread? Yes, they do check serial numbers. You can't do what you're trying to do.
     
  20. slapple thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Yes, I read it. I take it people were saying they compare the serial number on the MBP with the serial number that's on the box, which isn't what I was wondering. But if you're saying they can check the order number and determine what serial number they shipped to me, then that's the information I'm looking for.
     
  21. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #21
    Yes, serial numbers are matched not only to the box, but to the order and shipping label.
     
  22. Irock619 macrumors 68000

    Irock619

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    #22
    I know that Apple did me a favor. That's why I said in my post it depends which genius he talks to. A dead pixel may very well be a defect. These computers are expected to be flawless due to how much they cost, and Apple knows this. That's why Apple customer service is great.

    OP: Why don't you just return the original computer in the original box with receipt? Why do you want to return the old computer in the new box with different serial numbers?
     
  23. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

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    #23
    Not true. No computer is reasonably expected to be flawless, and none are. Apple does not consider one dead pixel to be a defect worthy of repair or replacement. They consider a small number of dead pixels to be acceptable.

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1721
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4044
    The OP is attempting to fraudulently get around the 14 day return period restriction by buying a new MBP and, instead of returning it within 14 days, substitute an older MBP that no longer meets the 14 day requirement.
     
  24. VABuckeye macrumors newbie

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    Sep 1, 2011
    #24
    Just go talk to Apple and try to get things sorted out. Doing a fraudulent return is no way to get what you want. In fact, when caught you'll probably be stuck with what you now have.
     
  25. slapple thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jul 25, 2008
    #25
    No I am not trying to commit fraud. If Apple didn't compare the serial number with the invoice, then it's very simple for me to do the exchange. Apple would be getting back the exact same type of computer - that's not fraud. Some of you guys are saying I can go into the store and see if I can find a really nice employee who agrees that 1 dead pixel is exchangeable. That would only help if I had bought a base model MBP that they carry in the stores, which I didn't. So I think I'll probably just return this, and buy it again with only 5% cashback with Discover.

    ----------

    Please get your facts straight before fraudulently saying "fraudulent". While the normal return period is 14 days, they increased it for the holidays - anything purchased after Thanksgiving can be returned until January 9.
     

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