iMac video card fried – just out of 3-year Apple Care. Best strategy?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by lars666, Jul 29, 2014.

  1. lars666, Jul 29, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2014

    lars666 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 13, 2008
    Hello everybody,

    I am in need for a good advice from the community here: The graphic card of my iMac bought in June 2011 suddenly died – blue screens of death, purple, yellow, red boot start screens etc. to the point that my iMac is unusable now. (Can't even boot anymore, just get a colored boot screen with the Apple logo in a square, changes to striped blue freeze screen after that.)

    I bought the Apple Care Protection Plan with my iMac, but - ill luck indeed - I am just one and a half month out of coverage now.

    Besides of my Apple Care, the replacement program below also applies to my iMac (serial number and graphic card):

    I never had any problems with my graphic card before, otherwise, I would have let it changed by Apple earlier, of course. This exchange program, as you can read in the article, also ends after 3 years of purchase. Same as with my Apple Care: I am one and a half month over that.

    My question is: What would be my best chance to ask for fairness in this special case that my iMac is repaired/exchanged nevertheless? Should I call Apple support? Do you think my chances are better if I directly bring my iMac to the Apple Store (Germany)? Or is it just a random and the only thing I can do is to hope that the person I talk to is nice enough?

    Also: What would be the best way to save my data from the iMac? I have both, a SSD and an internal hard drive inside of it, and always made time machine backups from the SSD to HDD, but never thought about the scenario that I can't access either of them anymore because of this. I also own a MacBook Pro – do I have to buy a thunderbolt cable, put the iMac in target mode and then have a chance to get the data?

    Any hints for the best strategy would be appreciated. Thanks so much in advance!!!


    EDIT: Judging by this document, the graphic card replacement program was extended to FOUR years after purchase – which would save me ...
  2. OUB macrumors newbie

    Feb 3, 2013
    Paris, France
    Honestly I would just go personally and talk to them. My previous experience at apple stores suggests they are always understanding if you present your case well enough.
  3. firedept macrumors 603


    Jul 8, 2011
    Go in to Apple Store after making Genius Appt. and present your case. Do not be aggressive, but make sure you have all your facts in place. Did not read the linked article you talked about, bit if in fact it stated it had been extended for a period of 4 years, then you have a good argument to have it replaced.

    Print the article out for reference when you go in to Apple. Does not mean the article is correct though. Maybe give Applecare a call before you try booking an appointment to see if in fact the article was correct. Never know, you might get lucky.

    I had this same iMac and had similar issues. They could not get mine fixed though and had to replace it, but mine was still under warranty. Give it a try, worst thing is you will have to pay for the repairs out of your pocket.
  4. lars666 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 13, 2008
    Thanks for the answers, really appreciated. I definitely won't be aggressive, always had very good experiences with Apple and their fairness when it comes to cases like this - but in the end it also depends which guy/girl you get talking to, I guess ...

    I decided to call Apple Care tomorrow first. As they will probably send me to the Apple Store anyway (don't believe that there's a pick-up repair service for the iMac), I'll make an appointment at the Genius Bar after that.

    I feel much more confident now that I found the official Apple document saying that the graphic card replacement program covers FOUR years instead of three.

    Thanks again for the responses.
  5. WilliamG macrumors G3

    Mar 29, 2008
    Looks like you'll be fine. :)
  6. lars666 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 13, 2008
    I really hope so ... The uncertainty stole my sleep tonight, as stupid as it sounds, but soon I'll know more! :) I know the iMac is already three years old, but was completely maxed out at time of buying and I would hate see it dying just one month after Apple Care expired. As you've said, I should b fine though if it is solely a graphic card defect. (And it definitely looks like it.)
  7. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    You're definitely in good shape then.

    And for what it's worth: I had to bring in a 2010 MacBook Pro that had a bad Graphics card once that was 4 months out of AppleCare, and 4 months out of its replacement program too. Despite this, and even though the Genius acknowledged that the coverage period had lapsed, he and his manager agreed to do the repair for free anyway. They can be very flexible if you're polite with them.

    Good luck.
  8. lars666 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 13, 2008
    Thanks a lot! Will give final feedback!

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