Warranty Types – What Do They Mean?
Should every product or service be accompanied with a warranty? What warranty should I choose? How many warranties are out there? These are questions that deserve our attention and need to be answered. I am going to explore the three most popular types of warranties provided in industrial manufacturing services. Whether you are buying new equipment, having your equipment serviced or sending your equipment out for repairs most companies will tantalize you with their claim of having the best warranty in the industry. All warranties have a time period for which they are valid. My purpose is to educate you on the options and allow you to make the decision the best fits your company.
Limited or Limited Lifetime Warranty
The first option for warranty is the “limited” or “limited lifetime warranty”. The fact that a warranty is limited means that the extent of the liability of the manufacturer is set only to what is specified in the warranty itself. For example, the manufacturer may be liable if the equipment suffers technical failure, but not if the purchaser damages the equipment through his own actions. The lifetime in question is rarely the lifetime of the purchaser, but rather the length of time the manufacturer continues to make the product. Industrial repairs can refer to the lifetime of specific components installed upon repair and the life by which the manufacturer will support that component. Once a product is discontinued, the length of time the manufacturer remains liable under the warranty is specified in the warranty documentation. In my experience most manufacturers only support their products or equipment for 2-4 years.
The second type of warranty is the “standard warranty” that begins when equipment is purchased or services are rendered. Typically, this warranty begins immediately when equipment is purchased or services are provided. The 30 day, 90 day, 6 months and 1 year warranties are very common in industrial manufacturing. Unfortunately, this does not apply to spare equipment on the shelf in the storeroom that is not installed within the time frame of the warranty. This is the most popular type of warranty in the industry. This allows the manufacturer and the service provider the easiest method of tracking their warranties. When they ship it the clock starts ticking on the warranty. Install upon arrival or buyer beware.
Finally, the “in-service warranty” is generally the most preferred warranty in the industry. The in-service date is the official date that your unit went into service. Regardless, of when you receive your equipment the warranty will have an unlimited shelf life. Most companies, when purchasing new equipment or having equipment repaired, are going to store these units as a backup for previously installed equipment. While the “limited lifetime warranty” only covers an item for the time period by which the manufacturer will support the items purchased, the “in-service warranty” allows you to store equipment indefinitely while still maintaining the warranty until installation. The “standard warranty” begins upon arrival and is no real comparison to the “in-service warranty”. Typically most companies only install equipment upon arrival if they have lost all of their backup units. When initiating the “in-service warranty” some companies require paperwork to be filled out when installing the equipment and there are other companies who do it on the honor system. This basically means they will take your word for it when you say you install the equipment into service. Either way this warranty can and is greatly beneficial.
So, to answer our initial question all products and services should be accompanied by some type of warranty to protect the customer. These three types of warranties are the most popular in industrial manufacturing. Choosing a warranty is totally up to you and your company but I encourage you to research and read the fine print before you ever invest money in new or even obsolete equipment. Hopefully, you won’t ever need to use your warranty, but don’t be stuck without one when the time comes to replace or repair.
At Global Electronic Services we stand behind our repairs and our surplus units with an 18 Month In-Service Warranty, no fine print! That means your repaired or surplus unit is covered for 18 months after you install it regardless of how long it was shelved before use!
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