Question from Markus: Hi, Rick. I recently bought a new computer that came with a 1 year warranty.
I’d really like to swap out its 1TB hard drive for an SSD (as you often recommend).
I have not read anything anywhere about potential consequences if one does this. Could this possibly be considered an “unauthorized” activity and therefore void the computer’s warranty?
I guess I’m just afraid they could easily use this as a convenient excuse to refuse responsibility by saying I damaged something while installing the new SSD or the SSD was faulty and damaged other parts of the computer.
Rick’s answer: Markus, the answer to your question is no. Simply removing the hard drive and installing an SSD in its place will not void the computer’s warranty.
That being said, if you damage any part of the computer while performing the upgrade the manufacturer might refuse to repair the damage you caused under the warranty coverage.
If you believe you have the skills required to safely make the swap I strongly recommend that you go ahead and do it because the speed increase you’ll enjoy with the new SSD will be substantial.
Just be extremely careful and make sure you don’t cause any damage to the machine while you’re performing the upgrade.
If you decide to go ahead with the upgrade you have a couple of options available to you:
1 – Simply install the SSD into an empty drive bay (if there is one of course) and leave the original hard drive installed as a secondary drive. Then clone the contents of the hard drive onto the SSD and change the bootup options to boot from it instead of the hard drive.
2 – Clone the contents of the hard drive onto the SSD, then remove the hard drive and store it safely on a shelf somewhere in case you ever need to have any kind of warranty work done on the machine.
If the computer ever needs to be repaired under warranty and you chose option 1, simply remove the SSD before taking or sending the machine to the service center.
If you chose option 2, just swap the drives back out again.
Either way, the manufacturer won’t claim that your SSD upgrade caused the problem and deny the warranty coverage. In fact, they won’t even know you ever made such an upgrade as long as you didn’t damage anything during the upgrade procedure.
I hope this helps, Markus. Good luck!
Update from Marcus: Thanks for the info. I did the swap and my boots up a LOT faster now!