Is AppleCare REALLY worth it for the MacBook Air?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Sounds Good, Jun 21, 2012.

  1. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2007
    Hi guys,

    I never buy an extended warranty for my electronics. Truth is I've always been lucky and haven't needed one. Therefore, I typically would pass on something like AppleCare for my MacBook Air purchase. But...

    Since AppleCare seems to be a pretty popular item around here, I'm curious to know how many of you think it's a worthwhile investment AND WHY YOU FEEL THAT WAY -- and how many of you believe it's NOT worth it.

  2. RocketRed macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2012
    I always buy AppleCare for all my Apple products. Even though I take extremely good care of my computer, I like the idea that I am always protected.

    AppleCare is a good long-term investment purchase. If you are planning to sell it and still have AppleCare warranty left, you can up the price.

    In my opinion, it's worth it.
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    AppleCare Protection Plan for Mac or Apple Display

    • You can buy AppleCare any time during the first year warranty period, so you don't have to buy it at time of purchase.
    • You can check your remaining warranty and/or AppleCare coverage here
    • AppleCare will extend the 1 year warranty for an additional 2 years, for a total of 3 years coverage from the date of your Mac purchase.
      It also extends telephone support from 90 days, which is included with your original warranty, to a total of 3 years.
    • You cannot buy AppleCare again or renew it once it expires.
    • Neither the Apple Warranty nor AppleCare will cover damage from accidents, spills, etc. They only cover manufacturing defects.
    • AppleCare+ provides some coverage for accidental damage, but is only available for the iPad and iPhone, not for Apple computers.
    • Neither the Apple Warranty nor AppleCare will cover batteries that have worn out. They only cover defective batteries.
    • For more detailed questions, read the AppleCare Protection Plan (pdf) agreement.

    As to whether AppleCare is worth it or not, that's a matter of opinion. You'll find lots of opinions on both sides, with roughly 75% saying it's worth it. You really need to decide if it's worth it to you. If you want more information, you can search the forum, where you'll find dozens, if not hundreds of threads asking "is AppleCare worth it?" The overall consensus seems to be about 75% in favor of it.
  4. ijen0311 macrumors 65816


    Jul 4, 2009
    I'm debating the same thing right now. It's $190 from B/H Photo.
  5. WoodNUFC macrumors 6502a


    Apr 30, 2009
    A Library
    I think it's well worth it. I've had my MBA completely replaced (piece by piece) over the last 3 years. Would've cost me a fortune to actually pay for the work myself.
  6. GREEN4U macrumors 6502a

    Mar 24, 2010
    I got AppleCare on my PowerBook G4 and it saved me a couple times. Twice I had a dead pixel and once there was a problem with my RAM. The dead pixels I probably could've lived with had I not had the AppleCare but the other problem was at least a few hundred dollars.

    If you're tight on money I would wait until your first year is up. You'll have a better idea of how good or lucky your machine is.
  7. Sounds Good thread starter macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2007
    Really? I've been very lucky with my numerous Windows machines. Are there really that many problems (a need for repair or replacement) with a MacBook Air?
  8. WesCole macrumors 6502a

    Jul 1, 2010
    I got it on my Air I just ordered. It's really good for peace of mind since nothing is user-replaceable anymore. Also, if you decide to sell before three years are up, you will get a lot of that initial investment for Apple Care back in your selling price. I also have Apple Care on my iPhone 4S, iPad, and iMac. I didn't get it on my 2010 MacBook Pro, though, because it was much more easily repairable.
  9. GREEN4U macrumors 6502a

    Mar 24, 2010
    If you use your Amex or Visa Signature to add an extra year of warranty AND AppleCare, do you get 4 years of warranty or still only 3? (meaning youre really only getting 1 additional year with AppleCare?
  10. Sounds Good thread starter macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2007
    Oooh, great question!
  11. scarred macrumors 6502a

    Jul 24, 2011
    Don't care if the queen herself is offering it, the answer is always "No" to extended warranties. This is especially true with computers... if they break, they'll usually break within your first year (which is already covered).

    As you research this, watch out for confirmation bias.
  12. Nychot macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2011
    If i keep my new mba a full year or more i will buy applecare next june. Its a delicate machine no matter how strong. The coverage is worth it and if you sell you can charge more or i think get pro rata rebate from apple.
  13. slipper macrumors 68000


    Nov 19, 2003
    I don't remember ever getting any sort of warranty repair for any of my Macs except for a top case replacement that Apple deemed a manufacturing defect which is a free repair with or without AppleCare. In general, Macs have proven to be more reliable than most other computers.

    I think the MacBook Air will prove to be even more reliable due to the fact that it does not use any mechanical parts such as a HDD or optical drive.
  14. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Companies like to sell extended warranties because they are profitable. That said, AppleCare is a better deal than most extended warranties, partly because Macs are not easily repaired. Note, however, that your credit card company likely doubles your warranty (though not BarclayCard*, which is the card who offers the 12-month same-as-cash plan at Apple stores and

    Also consider that AppleCare doesn't cover accidental damage. I was partly expecting them to expand AppleCare+ (which covers accidental damage to iPhones and iPads) to the Mac line, but so far they haven't. Companies like SquareTrade offer accidental damage coverage, but a better option may be to buy a personal articles policy from your homeowner's/renter's insurance company. In my case, it was $33/year for coverage against theft or accidental damage.

    * - On the whole, the BarclayCard is one of the worst cards I've seen. They don't have much in the way of promotions, and their cards don't offer good benefits. You are better off with a company who can offer a Visa Signature, AMEX, or World Mastercard.


    Just 1 year, from what I can tell. Visa Signature is happy to sell you an extended warranty, though.
  15. GekkePrutser macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2005
    If you're going to buy it, wait until your original year is almost up.

    As it's a portable, chances are you'll be dragging it around a lot, and if it gets stolen/dropped in the first year you would have bought the applecare for nothing.

    Besides something compelling may come out during the first year (a retina Air?) that you would absolutely want to upgrade to.
  16. yegon macrumors 68030

    Oct 20, 2007
    I buy it from a reseller at less than half what Apple charge. Here in the uk, I've bought two lots of Apple Care from CeX for about £100 each time. One was for my late 08 mbp, the other for my 2011 MBA. Had a replacement trackpad and optical drive via Care on my mbp after theyd worn out from two years hard use, the MBA has so far had no issues.

    Personally, I think Apple Care is more essential than its ever been given how un-user serviceable the MBA is. Could quite easily have done a fair bit of fiddling with my old mbp, I wouldn't know where to start with my MBA.

    Normally, I never go near extended warranties, this is my only exception.
  17. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    i always get it on all of my apple products. It helps with resell value, especially on phones. If i have any damage on the exterior of my phone i pay $50 with applecare+ and get a brand new one before i sell it. Someone posted in a similar thread to this one about how they have gotten 3 newest models of laptops through applecare. When their laptop went bad and couldn't be repaired Apple just gave them a new laptop (newest version)
  18. cecildk9999 macrumors regular


    Sep 10, 2006
    East Coast
    This is the best reason for it with the Airs and new Pros, in my opinion; if I'm going to spend somewhere between $1,000-$2,000 for a new computer, the extra couple hundred dollars for Applecare helps guarantee that I get three years of functionality for my machine. It also removes the frustration when/if you do have a problem; it becomes Apple's responsibility to take care of it (provided you didn't leave it out in the rain or something ;) ), and you don't have to argue/stress over the cost of a fix. That said, my MBP is entering its sixth year of service, and other than a new DVD drive, I didn't have an occasion to utilize Applecare for anything.
  19. comatose81 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 17, 2009
    I bought it for my 11" MBA. I mean, when you're buying something for $1,000+, what's another $200?

    In general, I am more inclined to get extended warranties for phones for two reasons - they are used a ton and likely to get dropped/damaged, and the purchase price is not the same as the replacement cost.

    I didn't get AppleCare for my iPad because it's a flat cost of $499. For $150 or whatever it is, we're talking about 1/3 of the price. Not worth it in my opinion. At $1,300 or whatever the MacBook Air is, I'll blow the $200 to not have to worry about anything breaking for 3 years.

    However, I don't blame anyone for not buying it. Apple has built a reputation on reliable products.
  20. Aniseedvan macrumors 65816

    May 14, 2012
    +1 because it's serviceable parts are reduced.

    That said it's easier for me as in the UK we get 3 years free if through the HE store.

    People's reports on here about how good it is is reassuring.

    Personally I'm looking to keep mine 3 years+ so it's not a resale issue but one to keep it going!
  21. Puevlo macrumors 6502a

    Oct 21, 2011
    Yeah get it. For a little bit extra your MBA will last three years instead of only one.
  22. NewbieCanada macrumors 68030

    Oct 9, 2007
    The main logic board on my 2011 MBA failed a month or two ago. Still under the included 1st year, but the invoice showed they'd have charged $500 for a replacement.

    If you plan on keeping your device, plan on it failing. I'm not a big fan of extended warranties. Never bought one on anything, but I'll buy applecare for my MBPR when the end of year one approaches, unless of course I know something even better is coming that I'll replace it with. ;)
  23. jameswdmb macrumors member

    Jun 4, 2012
    Question for you -
    If something goes wrong with your Macbook air do you think you can fix it? From special screwdrivers to proprietary SSD's, to custom battery's......Looks like you will be giving Apple some money to fix if something goes wrong, and it will likely be more money than the cost of Applecare if that ever does happen. Look at RAM as just a for instance.....RAM can fail anytime for a number of different reasons. How are you going to fix that when its soldered to the motherboard?

    IMO - It's like health insurance (with no deductible) and its not worth it when you dont get sick, but when you have a medical issue(s) come up, the cost of healthcare is usually several times more than the cost of the coverage you have paid for. I personally like the idea of not having to worry for three years and then starting to look at upgrading when a warranty runs out.

    Maybe you are a gambler at heart?
  24. ormie macrumors regular


    Feb 25, 2009
    Any portable Mac is best covered with Applecare. My first MacBook Pro 15" developed unrepairable faults and was replaced with a new i7 Pro. So I'd say yes to getting it for the Air too.
  25. scarred macrumors 6502a

    Jul 24, 2011
    Except you won't die if your macbook air breaks.

    Why are you worried about a computer breaking? It probably won't. If it does, you'll be out, at most, 1k (you are covered for the first year, so by the time it means anything, your computer has already been devalued). It would suck yup, but not something you should need to concern yourself about. It is just not worth buying insurance for something with such a low value.

    Stop worrying. You are covered against manufacturing defects already.

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