Apple Repairing Defective Time Capsule NAS Drives

Say what you will about Apple (and yes, there's a lot to be said), but the company has proven fairly reliable when it comes to repairing or replacing defective gear over the years. They're even confessing to a "bar issue" on the iPhone 4, which can't be an easy thing to do. The only problem we see here, however, is that they're a few years late in addressing a very real issue, and we have all ideas that most consumers moved on and purchased a replacement from a rival company after their Apple unit broke.

The unit we're talking about, of course, is the Time Capsule NAS device. Earlier models had a very real problem where they would simply fail without any rhyme or reason, and up until now, Apple has remained quiet on the issue. An updated support document on the device is the only indication of the company confessing to an issue, but for those who have held onto their older Time Machine, a replacement device is in store.

Apple has confirmed that "some Time Capsules sold between approximately February 2008 and June 2008 may not power on or may shut down unexpectedly after starting up," and if your device was made within that time frame and you have the serial number to prove it, you could be entitled to a repair or replacement for no cost. Better still, if you already paid to have that device serviced, you could be eligible for a refund. The fine print is below; good luck!

Affected Time Capsule models
Some Time Capsules with serial numbers in the following range may be affected:

How to find the serial number on your Time Capsule.

If your Time Capsule falls within serial number range above and it does not power on or shuts down unexpectedly after starting up, it may be eligible for repair or replacement.

Contact the Apple representative most convenient for you:  

    * Apple Authorized Service Provider. Find one here.
    * Apple Retail Store. Set up an appointment with a Genius (available in some countries only).
    * Apple Contact Center. Find the phone number for your region.

If Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider confirms that your Time Capsule is affected, Apple will repair or replace it free of charge.

Note: If you need to retain the data that is on your affected Time Capsule, Apple provides options depending upon where you live.

If you live in the U.S. or Japan and want to retain the data on the affected Time Capsule, contact Apple to arrange for mail-in service.   Turnaround time for mail-in service will be 3 to 5 days.

In all other countries, an Apple Retail Store or an Apple Authorized Service Provider (AASP) can transfer your data from the affected Time Capsule to a replacement Time Capsule if desired. Your Retail or AASP representative can provide specific turnaround times for this service.

If you believe that you paid for a repair or replacement Time Capsule due to this issue, contact Apple regarding a refund.

As always, Apple recommends that you back up your data. Learn more about other back up options while you are without your Time Capsule. Apple is not responsible for data loss.   

This program covers affected Time Capsule models for 3 years from their original date of purchase. Apple will continue to evaluate the service data and will provide further updates to the program if needed.