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Third Party Warranty?

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Hello all, I'm planning on purchasing a UM2 soon (I'm just on the fence, and need a push - the lead time is a bit of a concern), and was wondering if you guys have an opinion as to whether it would be worth purchasing a third party warranty (Squaretrade) for the UM2. The warranty for 3 years would be about $260. It SHOULD cover the cost of shipping if there's a need for repair. Does Ultimaker even offer repair service if the printer needs out of warranty repair? Is it likely that I would even need to have it repaired? $260 could buy a decent amount of filament, but if there's a chance that I may need to have the printer fixed, it'll cost a hell of a lot more considering shipping and whatnot.

I live in the U.S. by the way (California).

Thanks in advance for any opinions / insight.

 

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To be honest, I'd be very surprised if SquareTrade offered a warranty on a niche item like an Ultimaker 3D printer. Also, looking at their web site, it looks like they have their own repair centers that work on items, rather than being an insurance policy that covers the cost of getting a repair done at an authorized repair center. I can't imagine that they would have anyone qualified or experienced to work on an Ultimaker satisfactorily.

Right now, I'm not aware of any particular out-of-warranty repair service that is advertised by Ultimaker - I think these things are generally handled on a case-by-case basis working with their support staff. Bear in mind that the UM1 was specifically intended to be user assembled, and user serviceable, so for that printer sending out parts was generally all that was needed. The UM2 is a bit of a different case, since while it is still fairly easy to work on, it's being sold as more of a turnkey solution, and less technical ability can be assumed on the part of the owners. However, because it's still very new, there's not been a lot of need for the service yet.

Certainly, also, at the moment you would most likely need to order parts from Holland if the need arose, and if it came to it, ship the printer back there for service. In the past there have been rumors about UM improving its representation in the US, and potentially having a distributor that can provide parts, support and presumably even repairs directly in the USA. For those of us in the USA with UM printers that certainly has been something we've been hoping to see for a while now, but there doesn't seem to have been any new signs on that front in quite a while now.

Even the UM2 is really not that complicated. I wouldn't worry too much about the need for repairs, and I wouldn't waste money on a third party warranty service like that unless you're really sure that its going to actually be of practical help when the time comes.

 

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Thank you for the reply. I was definitely concerned as to whether it would be covered, since it is a niche market. I called Squaretrade customer support several different times just to be sure. The 3 different reps I spoke to spoke to their supervisor and assured me that it would be covered. I also informed the reps that there is no service center that would be capable of fixing it, and that only the manufacturer would be able to do so, or provide parts. Originally, the first rep I spoke to told me that in the event that it required service they'd send a technician out to repair it, which is when I made sure to be clear to the fact that that wouldn't be possible. She told me in that case they would either have it shipped to the manufacturer, or reimburse me up to the full purchase price.

I have three Squaretrade warranties. One of which is for a 65" TV that actually did require repair. They sent someone out the next day to repair it, which was surprising. Very quick service. Now, that being said, they were all too quick to try to sell me the warranty for the printer when I called about it... so I'd actually plan to speak to a supervisor and get it in writing / email that it would be covered. I'm grateful that my TV was so easy to take care of, but I've read horror stories as well with them.

But really, this would be my first 3D printer, so I wasn't sure if it would really be needed. I mean, I don't know what faults could possibly arise. $260 is not much when shipping alone would be $90+. At the same time, I've been reading throughout this forum, and I can't really foresee anything malfunctioning. Do extruders fail? i could see that as being a bit pricey, where the cost of the warranty would already be justified.

 

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A lot of what's in the printer is fairly generic off the shelf parts. There are some custom injection molded plastic parts, a simple but custom made nozzle assembly, and a custom electronics board. Other than that it's just fairly simple stepper motors, belts, pulleys and other generic parts. It's all probably a lot simpler than you think it is :-)

If you did have to pay for repairs, I'd think that a worst case might be $250 for parts and labor. I mean there's nothing like a laptop motherboard or some other part that might cost $1000+. And there is nothing you couldn't fix yourself with the supplied tools if you have even a basic aptitude for mechanical work, and the willingness to try. If you had to ship it to Europe that might get pricey, but hopefully that can be avoided.

Notwithstanding what you've been told, I'd still be very surprised if SquareTrade could actually deliver an effective warranty service.

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Ah, okay, I see... thanks, that eases my mind a bit. More funds for funner things in that case. :D Is there anything you think would be a good idea to purchase with the order, to save on shipping cost? Nozzle for example? You mentioned that it has a custom nozzle assembly, not sure if that means the nozzle is unique. I have seen UM1 nozzles listed elsewhere for about $5.

 

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Yes, the UM2 nozzle is different and integrated into the heating block. I don't think it's currently listed for sale on UM's site (it's available via support if and when it's needed). I wouldn't worry about ordering any spares up front.

Also, don't order extra filament from UM - there are plenty of places you can buy perfectly good filament in the US, and the extra cost of added filament often seems to increase the likelihood of it getting delayed in Customs.

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