Seagate drops warranties to three years

December 15, 2008 // 9:01 a.m.

Tags: #barracuda #consumer #five-year #hard-drive #hd #hdd #momentus #mtbf #mttf #seagatewarranty #three-year #warranties

Hard drive manufacturer Seagate is to reduce its standard warranty period on consumer-grade drives from five years to a mere three to bring them “in line with industry standard [...] offerings.

First spotted on Friday by techPowerUp, the move comes in to effect on 3rd January 2009 and affects all consumer-oriented products including the popular Barracuda 7200 range of desktop drives, the Momentus range of notebook drives, and all “personal storage" drives sold via Seagate Authorised Distributors.

In its rather low-key announcement on its product warranty matrix the company says that that the move doesn't represent a change of confidence in the reliability and quality of its products, stating that the “product quality remains excellent” and that “95 percent of all returns take place during the first three years” anyway, so why are you complaining?

The good news for anyone with a Seagate drive in their existing system is that the company will be honouring the longer warranty period on any drives shipped prior to the new terms coming in to force on the 3rd of January. Seagate has also reassured business customers that enterprise-class storage products will keep their five-year warranty intact, as it considers that “based on available market data, the standard industry warranty for enterprise-class products is 5 years.

The move to a three-year retail warranty marks the end of a blanket five-year offering from any hard drive manufacturer. While some competitors offer five-year warranties on certain product lines – such as Western Digital on its Raptor series – most cheaper consumer drives are provided with a three-year warranty. Whether the move will cost the company customers who had previously used the extra warranty period to differentiate similar products remains to be seen.

Any Seagate users looking elsewhere for drives after January, or is the reduction to a three year warranty a non-issue? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

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