The Wizard of Warranties


I don’t recommend buying warranties on many consumer electronics, but I really must emphasize how lucky I was to have it on my MacBook Pro (purchased June 2008).

In November 2008 on Election Day my battery failed to hold its charge a reasonable amount of time. Trip to Genius bar in Valley Fair + AppleCare -> Free replacement. That’s a savings of ~ $100. Yes we can, indeed.

Time passed, in the words of Sid Meier’s Civilzation (tm), and my Employer gave me a MacBook Pro. I handed my old one down to my girlfriend who has used it with great dedication since. On June 20th she IM’d me and said that the video seemed to have gone wonky, scanlines showing up, machine needed to shut down.

We took it to the genius bar on Stockton the 20th of June, Applecare expired on the 21st.

I could feel the air of a displaced bullet swishing past.

They replaced the battery (it had recently moved to holding charge for ~5 minutes), logic board, as well as the video unit. Cost? $0.00. That’s savings of ~$300.00.

So, for the outlay of another hundred, I saved myself at least $400 in repair, PLUS I got 90 days extra coverage for work done (even now that it’s past the AppleCare horizon). I told her to start saving for that new MBP, but she can still type this one into the ground, thanks to the AppleCare investment.

Then, Sunday night I went to do another Goodwill run and as I drove out of the garage I heard something that wasn’t right. I stopped the car and looked out, my tire was barely full. I limped to the Shell across the street and filled it back up. A quick test showed I was losing about 10 Psi per evening. I filled it up and headed down to the Discount Tire in Redwood City. Thanks to my warranty a brand new replacement Michelin was $0.00. This is much less than the cost of one tire. $25 bucks to renew the certification and labor had me back on the road, safe and sure 40 minutes later.

Oh yes, and I noticed some scratches in my hardwood floor the other day that appear to be where some equipment with pointy ends had rested during the upgrade installation of my place. Warranty! Wha-bam. A very expensive contractor who specializes in slat color matching is coming next Thursday.