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Watch out for Refurb!

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I've often heard Adam talk about how Refurb can be as good as, or better than, off-the-shelf. I've just learnt that there are some pitfalls!


I bought a Refurb Time Capsule. I have had nothing but problems with it and, although all of the telephone support was very good (to which I have become accustomed), to be told at the end that I have to return it AND NOT GET A REPLACEMENT is not what I expect from Apple.


OK - it's a Refurb - but that is supposed to be at least as good as, or better than, an off-the-shelf (at least according to Web-mythology.


Now, I have had 5 days of fighting with this thing, hours of telephone calls and then to be treated like that is not on and shatters my faith in Apple. It sounds as though the rule-makers are allowing too little discretion - or perhaps I've got it wrong"? I'm not a Consumer - I'm a Customer - and a returning one to boot!


Be warned!


Terry Brinkworth, Northumberland, England

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Do you mean that Apple asked you to return it for repair and you don't get a loaner unit? Or do you mean that they want you to return it for a full refund ? Are you expecting a brand new Time capsule in exchange for the Refurb one ? If it is one of the first two, that's the way Apple deals with new units most of the time also. You can sometimes get better results by taking the unit in question directly to an Apple store, but the results will vary. It's also been my experience, at least here in the states, that most if not all, other Tech companies work the same way ... if something is wrong with the unit and the issue cannot be easily fixed by phone support, you are expected to get the unit to a repair shop to get it fixed. The exception to this is when you purchase new, current stock. Then, in many cases, the retailer will just swap out the item with another off the shelf. It's been my experience that Apple Refurb will often replace with like IFF they have additional refurb units of that kind in stock, but I don't think Apple can be expected to give you a brand new state of the art unit if your refurb ( which you did get at a discount ) fails. Reasonably, IMHO, if they have offered to repair it or refund your money that fulfills their obligation. If your situation is different than I interpreted, then that is something different and we need to hear more details.


I think it needs to be pointed out, also, that while people like Adam and myself ( I have purchased 3 refurb units from Apple over time including the 24" iMac I'm using right now ) may recommend the refurb store as a great option to others who wish to save some money ( because of our good luck with it ), there are always risks involved with buying any refurbished product ( from any company ) and buying new off-the-shelf is always the safest, if not cheapest, bet. And remember that it is "Web-Mythology" that has implied that refurb is "good as, or better than, off the shelf " not Apple itself. As long as Apple is offering to repair the unit, I think they are holding up their end.


Oh, and by the way, something I just thought of .... you are still fairly at the beginning of the process. It could still turn out that Apple tries to fix the unit, fails, and gives you a brand new Time capsule after all ( I've heard of that happening before also ). Be patient and give Apple a chance to do the right thing with due process and you might be pleasantly surprised.

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the bottom line on refurbs are to check to see what warrantee it comes with before purchase. some products carry just 90 or 120 days. and some products are now different then new have a 1 year warrantee and are eligible for AppleCare.


YMMV, read the fine print, advice based on local experience, not all locals are like here, don't drop your MacBook.

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