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Warranty on replacements under warranty?

Discussion in 'Laptops' started by Werner R Schilling, Nov 5, 2005.

  1. Hello Group:

    The Toshiba Satellite Pro 6100 is already famous for its design flaws.
    Mine is a wonderful machine -- as long as it works. What I don't like
    is its heavy "consumption" of hard disks. Mine got a new one after
    little less than twelve months of use. That lasted less than eight
    months. The following lasted less than five months. Now I am working
    already six months with the fourth HDD on this machine and I expect it
    to fail anytime.

    The computer was bought in the US in March 2003 together with an
    extension of the warranty for three years. All the replacements were
    done under warranty by a local Toshiba dealer in Costa Rica (for this
    matter no complaints so far about the service). Last time they also
    changed the motherboard because they were guessing that the board
    caused the HDD failures. But still the drive is permanently working at
    the upper end of the rated operation temperature of 55° Celsius, often
    much hotter up to 64° Celsius. Especially during the frequent backups
    of the drive (guess why ...) it gets much too hot.

    The extended warranty for the whole laptop ends in March next year.
    Now somebody told me that the replaced hard disks also come with a
    warranty (of twelve months?). My question: is that true? Let's assume
    that I get the fifth HDD under warranty in February next year. Would
    Toshiba really have to replace that disk in case it fails before
    twelve months of use? And what's about the next if they also fail too
    soon? Would this really run in to a "chain" of replacements under
    warranty?

    I'm not familiar with the legal system in the US and the consumer
    rights. Could somebody give me a clue?

    Werner
     
    Werner R Schilling, Nov 5, 2005
    #1
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  2. Werner R Schilling

    BigJIm Guest

    it depends some come with 90 days some a 1 year and some more.
     
    BigJIm, Nov 5, 2005
    #2
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  3. In general (and only your warranty paperwork knows for sure),
    replacement parts are only warrantied for the life of the original
    system warranty (or sometimes 90 days, whichever comes last). Check
    with your dealer for details.

    If, however, you buy a drive with a 5-year warranty, you could keep
    swapping that one out for the next 5 years, though you'll have to ship
    it back for RMA service, so you might want to buy two... 8*)

    Only you can decide if trying to keep a 3-year-old laptop with known
    reliability problems running is worthwhile. [Are you sure you aren't
    particularly rough on it? Do you treat it like a carton of eggs or a
    textbook?]
     
    William P.N. Smith, Nov 5, 2005
    #3
  4. As this is a known problem with the Satellite Pro 6100 I hoped for
    some specific experience from members of this group.
    This is interesting. Where can I buy a HDD with a 5-year-warranty? And
    if I would continue to return those disks before only one year,
    wouldn't they ask where and how I use them? And if I tell them about
    the Satellite Pro 6100, wouldn't that constitute a maltreatment of
    that HDD and therefore void the warranty?
    At the time when I bought it, it was a top-performer, and it still is.
    No other problems yet.
    I treat it more gentle than a carton of eggs. 98 percent of the time
    it is used as a desktop replacement and it is not moved around. I use
    it with an external keyboard and an external pointing device, so it is
    barely touched. But HDD Thermometer and HDD Tune, both show me a
    temperature of 56° Celsius at the disk while I write this and no other
    programs are running (ambient temp is 25°, comp on dock, no
    obstructions for the airflow). When the computer is totally idle, the
    temperature may go down to 53°, never lower. As comparison: I have a
    second HDD already that I run in the second bay for backup. On that
    disk the temperature is always - under any load! - 12 to 15° lower.
    The same result when I swap the disks and run the spare disk in place
    of the original one. Then the spare disk gets too hot. The compartment
    for the original disk is obviously put too close to hot parts and is
    not well ventilated.

    Werner
     
    Werner R Schilling, Nov 5, 2005
    #4
  5. Werner R Schilling

    Paul Rubin Guest

    Paul Rubin, Nov 5, 2005
    #5
  6. They don't require you to tell them about how and where you use it,
    and their warranty doesn't limit it to "not for use in laptops that
    might break it".
    56 is a bit high, I'd not want to see anything over 50C for long
    periods of use.

    If you've cleaned out the air vents, that's about all you can do
    unless you want to start adding vents or external fans, which gets
    ugly fast.
     
    William P.N. Smith, Nov 6, 2005
    #7
  7. I assume you have been going through Toshiba hard drives, trying a
    different vendor might be worthwhile.

    Look at (for instance) IBM/Hitachi, Seagate, Western Digital, Maxtor.
     
    William P.N. Smith, Nov 6, 2005
    #8
  8. Toshiba sets the policy. Replacement drives might or might not have a
    warranty which would extend beyond the original laptop warranty, but if
    provided by Toshiba under warranty this is at their discretion.

    Some drives have 5-year warranties, for example I have a Seagate 100GB
    5400 rpm laptop drive with a 5-year warranty IF BOUGHT AT RETAIL.

    ***BUT***, if the drive is overheated, this could be considered abuse,
    and the warranty could be voided. Note that the SMART system may record
    the drive temperature.

    If this is a systemic problem with this model, the only real solution is
    to demand a new laptop of a different model, a demand which will
    probably be rejected (laughed at, even). In that case, the only
    remaining remedy would be a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of all
    owners of that model. This has happened in the past, both to Toshiba
    and others, so it may be worth looking into, but you need a class-action
    attorney.
     
    Barry Watzman, Nov 6, 2005
    #9
  9. Good point! As well as a S.M.A.R.T.-HDD records its operating hours
    (read out with HD Tune) it *could* as well record the max. temp and -
    may be - the max. G it suffered before it failed . This would
    partially explain the generous warranty of Seagate. "Sorry, we
    detected that your disk was overheated to x°C and that it was exposed
    to a shock of x G. Warranty void."

    In my case I may go the opposite way: put a small and cheap HDD with
    just the OS installed in the place of the original disk so that the
    computer boots, and then really run it from the disk that is sitting
    in the cool and comfortable second bay ;-) That would be less load (=
    less heat) for the main disk, and if it still fails it would be cheap
    to replace.
    There were already class-action suits going that referred to the same
    problem among others. Sitting in Central America and being a foreigner
    I was not sure if and how I could join. I may try to get in contact
    with that people.

    Werner
     
    Werner R Schilling, Nov 6, 2005
    #10
  10. You don't have to join a class action lawsuit, if you don't explcitly
    "opt out", and there is a settlement, you are automatically eligible for
    the benefits of the settlement. [However, this might apply only to
    people in the United States]. The biggest issue is simply finding out
    about it. Do a google search on "Toshiba class action", but as there
    have been a number of these already, you will get a lot of spurious hits
    (maybe include your model number in the search).
     
    Barry Watzman, Nov 7, 2005
    #11
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