Hard drives as consumables?

james*b

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 2, 2011
123
0
Hi
Just reading the fine print on a website.. are hard drives and/or their enclosures generally considered to be consumables?
Thanks in advance!
 

Mr Rabbit

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2013
637
4
'merica
Hi
Just reading the fine print on a website.. are hard drives and/or their enclosures generally considered to be consumables?
Thanks in advance!
I consider them to be consumable, so yes. I don't think they quite often get the same thinking applied to them as other consumable items, such as batteries that are thought to be consumed following X number of cycle counts, but the fact is that they are still mechanical devices that have a finite lifespan. There will always be exceptions but when I buy a hard drive I'm typically expecting about 3-5 years of use from it depending on it's usage. If a hard drive has a 3 year warranty, and fails after 3 years then I go on about my day and work on replacing it with no hard feelings.
 

james*b

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 2, 2011
123
0
I consider them to be consumable, so yes. I don't think they quite often get the same thinking applied to them as other consumable items, such as batteries that are thought to be consumed following X number of cycle counts, but the fact is that they are still mechanical devices that have a finite lifespan. There will always be exceptions but when I buy a hard drive I'm typically expecting about 3-5 years of use from it depending on it's usage. If a hard drive has a 3 year warranty, and fails after 3 years then I go on about my day and work on replacing it with no hard feelings.
Thanks Rabbit. So if, for example, a consumer website said they offered 2 years warranty on items except for consumables, would you imagine this included hard drives..?
 

flynz4

macrumors 68040
Aug 9, 2009
3,125
35
Portland, OR
Thanks Rabbit. So if, for example, a consumer website said they offered 2 years warranty on items except for consumables, would you imagine this included hard drives..?
I would think not. Consumables would be things such as ink cartridges, screen cleaner bottles, etc.

Check with the seller to be sure... but if they considered a drive to be a consumable and voided the warranty... then I would take my business elsewhere.

/Jim
 

Mr Kram

macrumors 68020
Oct 1, 2008
2,370
1,169
in that context, a hard drive is not a consumable item and should be covered by the warrantee. but as others have said, check with the seller to make sure.
 

jimthing

macrumors 65816
Apr 6, 2011
1,423
662
London, UK (Europe, Earth, Space)
In this context the actual answer is that a "consumable" item is one that is interchangeable with another, i.e. the marketplace generally sees HDD's as all being very much alike.
Hence why PC manufacturers like Apple may put Toshiba HDD's in their Mac Mini's for 3 months, then get a better price from WD for the same size drive, so then use those for 3 months, then get a better price from Seagate, and then use those for a few months.*
Price is king, as the product is seen as interchangeable with one another.

Much in the same way as raw materials like coffee, tea, sugar, coal, oil, natural gas are all seen as consumables to be traded on markets, to be eventually sold-on to processors who "add value" to the product, often by differentiating the raw material into a refined product — like HDD's are with high-priced Apple computers(!) or coal/oil/gas is when turned into electricity to be sold on for profit to end consumer.

(*although, we all know some models of drive can always have a run of failures, and thus the PC manufacturer may just buy another companies model instead, as, when, and if needed.)
 
Last edited:

marzer

macrumors 65816
Nov 14, 2009
1,329
44
Colorado
Hi
Just reading the fine print on a website.. are hard drives and/or their enclosures generally considered to be consumables?
Thanks in advance!
Consumables has been a very straight forward concept for many years with regard to warranties. It has always referred to items that are intentionally depleted or degraded by its intended use. As flyn already pointed out - ink cartridges, toner, solvents, etc.

Hard drives are NOT consumables and have always been covered by manufacturer warranties. By the drive manufacturer when purchased individually or by the system manufacturer when used as a component.
 

Mr Rabbit

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2013
637
4
'merica
Thanks Rabbit. So if, for example, a consumer website said they offered 2 years warranty on items except for consumables, would you imagine this included hard drives..?
Ah, with this context I'm with the others in this thread. I doubt they are referring to hard drives as consumables. To be safe though I would ask first just to be sure.