swapping controller cards, voiding warranty?
October 23, 2008 5:49 PM   Subscribe

Can I temporarily swap out the controller board on my seagate hard drive without voiding the warranty?

I have a Seagate 7200.10 500GB hard drive that I fried the controller board on (fed 12V into the 5V connector, blew what appears to be a fuse or voltage regulator). I have made an RMA request, and a replacement drive is coming on monday

while I had most everything backed up, there are a few things I still want to get off of the drive. I have an identical drive that I could swap the controller board for, but I don't want to invalidate my warranty by doing it. so my question:

1) will removing the controller board invalidate my warranty if I reattach the broken board before I send it back?

2) will Seagate be able to tell if I have removed the board if I reattach it (there are no "this will void your warranty stickers" on the board, but I am worried about tamper-evident screws and the like)?
posted by grandsham to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've done it before with no problems. While I wouldn't recommend doing this, I don't see the harm as you're basically sending back in-warranty materials to them either way.
posted by samsara at 6:10 PM on October 23, 2008

I wouldn't recommend doing this without making absolutely sure that opening the drive will not void the warranty. They will almost certainly know if you've opened it, and may send you a bill for the new drive -- oftentimes, it's enough that you've removed one of the primary encasing screws to void the warranty.
posted by spiderskull at 6:27 PM on October 23, 2008

Luckily, one doesn't need to open the drive in order to remove the logic board. Judging by the drive in front of me, six 6-pointed torx screws is all it'll take, with no warning stickers in the way.
posted by TheNewWazoo at 8:10 PM on October 23, 2008

I would be carefull some hdd drives have a gray warranty void if removed sticker on them. So make sure you dont have any of those on it before taking the board off.
posted by majortom1981 at 5:29 AM on October 24, 2008

As long as removing the board doesn't require you to remove or cut any tape or other seals then you're fine. They'll never know. I take apart hard drives on a near weekly basis and have never seen a controller board with any type of tamper-evident tape. They just use that on the screws you'd have to remove to actually open up the drive.
posted by J-Garr at 8:43 AM on October 24, 2008

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