It might seem like computer warranties aren't worth the extra cost. You might figure that given the cost of a premium new machine, the chance of something going wrong is low. But every computer fails eventually---almost always at the least convenient moment.
This is why computer warranties are important and we recommend them for our clients. Let's review the value a warranty provides and why they're a wise idea.
What Is a Warranty?
As a refresher, a warranty is essentially a guarantee that a product manufacturer will repair or replace defective goods within a certain period of time. This is common with new vehicles, appliances, and many other items. If a component dies prematurely, you usually aren't responsible for the cost of the repair.
Most computers come with a limited hardware warranty that offers to replace components or the entire device if it fails. These typically last anywhere from 90 days to one year.
Why Are Extended Warranties Worthwhile?
While basic warranties are useful, when buying computers for a business, we recommend adding a more comprehensive warranty. As we often order Dell computers for our clients, Dell's warranty is relevant here.
Next Business Day Service
Dell's next business day onsite warranty is important to avoid disruption to your business flow. Under a normal warranty, you'll need to send the entire computer into Dell for repair if something goes wrong. While it's still covered, this means you won't have that computer available for some time.
But Dell's warranty includes next-day service at your business. That means a certified Dell technician comes to fix the failed hardware component without you having to ship it and wait for the repairs. For small fixes, this could result in the machine being back in service before the end of the day.
Guaranteed Replacement Parts
With Dell's warranty service, you know that the technician is using genuine parts that are guaranteed to work. Outside of a warranty, the repair will likely use off-the-shelf parts that are riskier.
If you had a component die in a computer, you certainly don't want it to fail soon after again. Since you're taking the time to repair it, it makes sense to use the best-quality parts.
Protect Your Investment
When you purchase a business computer, you probably expect to use it for around three to five years. If one costly components dies during its lifetime and you don't have a warranty, you may have to replace the entire machine even though only one part is bad.
For example, say you spend $800 on a laptop in 2018. In 2020, perhaps the motherboard goes bad and would cost $300 to repair outside of warranty. You may question whether it's worth putting another $300 into a two-year-old machine to replace the motherboard when you can buy a new one for $800.
But with the warranty, you can get the motherboard replaced and hopefully keep the computer in service for another few years.
Computers Can Be "Totaled" Too
Just like cars, some computer issues and damages are small enough that you can fix them and keep using the machine. If the battery stops working in a laptop, for instance, you don't need to replace the entire machine when you can spend $30 for a new battery.
But major hardware failures can take a machine out of commission if the cost to repair them is too high. With the right warranty, you can reduce your chances of "totaling" a computer before it reaches the end of its useful life.
Thus, we recommend hardware warranties for their expedient service, quality repairs, and protection of your investments. Computer breakdowns are common, so it's wise to be prepared for them.