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09-18-2007, 11:30 AM   #1
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Extended warranty -- your experience?

OK. I've read all the Bad Stuff about Mack so no point in rehashing that.

I just received my K10D. Based upon past experience with digicams, a good extended warranty could be useful. Of course, the key word in that sentence is "good".

There are two primary schools of thought on this subject. One is, "Extended warranties are basically a rip-off. Don't waste your money. Just take your chances. If you have to pay for repairs, look at it as part of the cost of ownership."

The other is, "Digicams are delicate devices and service on them is very expensive. The cost of a single repair typically exceeds the price of the extended warranty so it makes sense to have one because over time you're very likely to need service anyway. An extended warranty makes that cost predictable."

I can get a 3 year Pentax direct warranty for ~US$90.

Mack offers a three year extension for $50, but from what I've read, that's $50 too much.

What experiences have you had with extended warranties? I'm particularly interested in Pentax U.S. service or other viable options.

TIA!/Scott


Last edited by scottax1; 09-18-2007 at 11:36 AM.
09-18-2007, 12:05 PM   #2
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You should do whatever makes you feel comfortable. $90 over 3 years isn't that much. On the other hand, the K10D won't be worth all that much in 3 years either, plus any defects will make themselves known within your regular warranty period. The key point is that you need to do what makes you sleep well at night.

I never buy the third party extended warranties. They are an absolute gold mine for whomever offers sells you one (the actual claims experience is very low), which is why salespeople push them every time I buy a widget at the electronics store.

This is not to say I dislike extended warranties. I just won't pay for them. I do buy things using a credit card that has an extended warranty feature. It will double the warranty period by up to 1 year on anything I buy. So my 2 year Pentax factory warranty becomes a total 3 year warranty, with my credit card company backstopping me in the last year.

This advice is worth $0.02 over 3 years.

Last edited by tranq78; 09-18-2007 at 12:25 PM. Reason: spelling
09-18-2007, 12:21 PM   #3
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I have never had an extended warranty on any camera equipment. You can deduce from this what I think about the value.

I have had the following issues in 25 years. these are as follows.

Vivitar Series 1 70-210 the focusing and zoom collar was so loose the lens could not hold focal length setting at anything other than perfectly level. The lens was new and the store replaced it no questions asked/

SMC-M 100 mmF4 Macro, bought used would not focus to infinity. Store had it repaired no questions asked

Sigma APO 70-200 F2.8 EX-DG Lens hood was at 45 degrees on the lens when I took it out of the box, the store replaced it no questions asked.

I have also had an intermittent battery connection develop in my Ricoh XR2S due to supporting the above Series 1 lens on the camera body tripod mount. Ricoh repaired it NC out of warranty

During all this time, my cameras have been rained on, (my *istD doused in a swamped Kayak), all manner of extreme heat and cold, occasionally dropped (fortunately not on rocks) and no other failures, or permenant loss of function.

Take the $90 and put it towards an insurance rider for accidential damage or loss on your gear, it is more productive in that respect. Typically you will pay 2% of the insured value per year. Loss from theft or accidental damage is probably much more likely than a failure.

My *istD which was litterlly dripping wet, was dried out and has gone on to work flawlessly for 3 more years without even cleaning.
09-18-2007, 03:31 PM   #4
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Lowell, I'm glad to hear you've had better luck with gear than I've had!

I didn't think about the possibility of accidential damage coverage so I appreciate hearing a different perspective like that. I actually did drop a lens to the floor while setting up for a portrait session with a client -- totaled it. Had to shoot with a fixed focal length rather than a zoom and though I had to work harder got better results than I did with the zoom.

Hmmm . . .

Thanks!/Scott

09-18-2007, 03:33 PM   #5
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Tranq, have you ever made a claim through your cc company? If so, how did it work out?

I thought about getting a card with that 'feature' but my wife likes the one that gives us $$ back instead.

Thanks!/Scott
09-18-2007, 03:42 PM   #6
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I agree with others - I never buy an extended warranty on electronics and I have bought a boat load of stuff over the years. I find if something is going to go wrong it will go wrong in the first year which is usually what the manufacture offers as part of the price. Of course some extended warranties offer a replacement immediately (so no need to wait the 6-8weeks for manufacture to get it and send it back).

I did get burnt once - an Acer laptop - the LCD burnt out me after about 2.5 years (I could have bought a 3 year extended warranty) - the replacement cost of the LCD was excessive ($700.00 ish) more than the computer was worth at that point, so I bit the bullet and bought a new one.

I also had a Canon PS (forget the model) where I actually froze the LCD (taking shots outside for an extended period of time at -20+ haah) - This camera was about 4 months old and Best Buy replaced it without issue. Ummm that might have been user induced

I also agree with whatever makes you comfortable $90.00 is not much and if they offer new gear or whatever is current as an immediate replacement might be worth a look.
09-19-2007, 07:17 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by scottax1 Quote
Tranq, have you ever made a claim through your cc company? If so, how did it work out?

I thought about getting a card with that 'feature' but my wife likes the one that gives us $$ back instead.

Thanks!/Scott
I have never made a claim on the extended warranty feature of my c.c., but I have made a couple of small claims on services/goods not provided. I have always had excellent service from them so I don't think I would have a problem.

My c.c. also gives "cash back" but in the form of vehicle rebates. 2% of all my purchases accrue for 7 years. I can use this amount to buy a car, any model, new or used. So far I've gotten rebates of $2,000 from this feature. Needless to say I'm very happy.
09-19-2007, 08:11 AM   #8
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I've never bought an extended warranty on anything. With the money I've saved through the years I can afford to buy new. When I was shooting special events, if the digicam was to fail it usually did so in the first 60 days or so.

09-19-2007, 10:30 AM   #9
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I know that here in the USA some Visa Card providers double a warranty up to two years. So when I purchased my K100D Super I purchased it on one of those Visa cards. All I have to do is keep the statement and the original bill of sale and after the one year is up, I am covered for one additional year. I buy all my electronics that way. check with your Visa card company. My bank is Chase.
09-19-2007, 12:13 PM   #10
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I lucked out, the only time I ever bought an extended warranty was on a computer once, and after a year and a half, the monitor burned out, so I got a free replacement. (the Best Buy associate was not happy though, he couldn't say anything, but it seemed to pain him very much that they had to give me a new monitor, which by then was an upgrade to the one that was originally with the computer)

I decided it was more likely a defect in my DSLR would show up during the warranty period, otherwise I'd be more likely to drop or fall on it/whatever - in which case a warranty wouldn't help. Though you can sometimes find warranties that cover abuse/neglect damage, they're much more expensive.
09-19-2007, 12:43 PM   #11
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I think the warranty I have with the visa covers accident, not misuse.
09-19-2007, 01:13 PM   #12
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Pentax has a 2 year warranty in Canada... and I had EXCELLENT service from them when my old Optio-450 broke, so I don't see why I'd shell out money for "extra" warranties...

Just my 2 cents worth

Pat
09-19-2007, 01:26 PM   #13
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A two year warranty is real nice, is that on everything?
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