Is AppleCare a waste of money if I just replaced my MBP hard drive?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jshbckr, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. jshbckr macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #1
    I bought my MacBook Pro about 4.5 months ago and since I was so excited to get it, I couldn't wait on a custom order. So I picked up a 2.4GHz with 200GB 5400 RPM drive from an Apple Retail store.

    I've got a Mac Pro with a 320GB boot drive, and since the new Hitachi Travelstars came out, I decided to put an identical drive in my MacBook Pro so I can have all the same apps and files on my portable (without having to squeeze it all in).

    So last night I opened my MBP and installed my 320GB 7200 RPM drive. Everything went incredibly smoothly. No stripped screws, nothing bent, torn or cracked. I even avoided taking off the yellow tape that holds down the keyboard cable by propping the case up like a car hood.

    Now, I've always been a strong advocate of AppleCare on portables. No question about it, 90% of the time, SOMETHING will go wrong. AppleCare has saved my girlfriend several hundred dollars (First revision MacBook) and she's one repair away from just getting a whole new computer from Apple.

    But now I'm worried... Did I void my warranty? Traditionally, I suppose I did--I opened the computer. However, from everything I've heard, if something happened to my computer, I could put my old drive in and Apple would be none-the-wiser. Sure, I'd feel silly if I got a call from Apple with them saying "Well... It looks like you've opened the computer." But I would feel MUCH more silly if I had just spend $240 on AppleCare!

    So would I be pretty safe buying AppleCare, as long as I keep my old drive to put in? Also, since RAM is user replaceable, I don't have to worry about putting in my old RAM if I had to send in my MBP, right?

    P.S. (Rant) - How absurd is it that in a PROFESSIONAL computer, we need to be afraid of a voided warranty when we upgrade our hard drives? A CONSUMER computer (MacBook) even has a pull tab to easily slide the drive out!
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    If you take the time to read your AppleCare Protection Plan agreement, you'll see that replacing the hard drive does not void the agreement, UNLESS you damage something in the process.

    Installation of RAM does not void the Apple Warranty.
     
  3. nanvinnie macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2007
    #3
    don't you void the warranty if you make any mods? not sure how they can tell so i assume that if you can get it back to it's original config you should be fine. i never tried opening my comp before but do they put any nylock on the screws? any anti-tampering devices? just curious.
     
  4. chiefroastbeef macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas/ Hong Kong
    #4
    I'm in a similar boat, I upgraded to a 320 HD a month after I purchased my MBP with 200gb 7400rpm harddrive(wasted money...)

    I think what some people do is keep the old harddrive, and put it back in when you have to send it in for repairs. Unless you blew a snot rocket on the circuit board when swapping, they really can't tell or blame you.
     
  5. jshbckr thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2007
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
    #5
    I laughed out loud at "snot rocket".

    Anyway, as far as I could tell, there weren't any anti-tampering devices. There was some blue stuff on the end of the screws, but from what I read on guides, this is Loc-Tite to keep the screws tight without having to over-tighten them.

    There is some yellow tape over some of the connecting cables (from the logic board to the keyboard) and other places, but I'm not sure if this is special tape that leaves evidence when removed and I wasn't going to find out.

    Overall, though, I really don't think they'd be able to tell at all as long as you get everything back together without stripping screws or scratching the case.

    The most terrifying part of the whole thing was pulling off the top of the case. NO websites show what the plastic clips at the front look like, so I felt like I was going to bend the metal or break something... But it popped off without too much hassle.
     
  6. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #6
    If you click the link I provided and read the information, along with reading the Apple Limited Warranty and the AppleCare Protection Plan Agreement, you'll see that replacing user-serviceable parts such as RAM or hard drives do NOT void the warranty, UNLESS you damage something in the process.
     
  7. chiefroastbeef macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas/ Hong Kong
    #7
    But if the puter is sick and Apple takes a look at it and finds that I've swapped my drive, can they just automatically say the problem is the HD when it has nothing to do with it?
     
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #8
    Not if the hard drive is functioning properly and you caused no damage to any other components. Apple expects that many will upgrade RAM or hard drives, which is why they publicize the statement that it doesn't void warranty.
     
  9. peapody macrumors 68040

    peapody

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2007
    Location:
    baltimore, md
    #9
    I believe the hdd is not a user serviceable part because it is not accessible to the user. The Ram is.

    On macbooks both the hdd and ram is, and that is why the apple care says that.

    The policy over at Asus is that if your hdd has the problem, they won't replace it for you. If you damaged a part in the process of opening the computer, they won't replace it for you. If you damage something that is related to your hdd, they won't replace it for you. Otherwise they leave it alone upon repair.
     
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #10
    (d) to damage caused by service (including upgrades and expansions) performed by anyone who is not a representative of Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider (“AASP”); (e) to a product or part that has been modified to alter functionality or capability without the written permission of Apple;

    Replacing the HDD on a MBP voids the warranty ONLY IF you damage it. You're not modifying the hard drive; you're replacing it. Of course, the warranty does not extend to the new drive you install, or to any damage the new drive may cause to other components.
     
  11. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #11
    That's just Kapton tape which has the unique properties that it leaves not residue when removed, is heat proof, and is an excellent insulator; I always keeps a few rolls around for soldering projects.

    The policy for any companies' normal warranty (not the accidental) is if you break, you lose warranty (break it whether repairing or USING).
     

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