Repair or Replace?

Posted by admin on March 19, 2015

Repair or Replace?

Mar 19, 2015

That is a question we get a lot here at the shop.  Much of the technology items purchased today are what is known as ‘throw away’ tech.  This means the devices are very inexpensive and aren’t worth repairing.  The end-game is to get the consumer to buy a new device when the current one breaks.  Manufacturers build in obsolescence and herd consumers to purchasing new devices within set time periods. 

Most items can be repaired…

It is true that most items can be repaired, unless of course the item has suffered extreme physical trauma such as fire damage or being run over by a car.  At times we do have people bring their devices, or what is left of it, in a bag asking if we can fix.  In these instances it is an automatic replace recommendation from our techs.

Cracks in the housing, whether a laptop, a monitor, a phone/tablet can all be fixed by replacing the broken part, or even the entire case. 

So, too figure out if it is worth repairing we have a very simple equation that goes like this: 

If the cost of the repair is more than the cost of replacing then we don’t recommend repair unless there is sentimental value or personal items (files or software) that make the physical replacement cost irrelevant.

If the cost of repair is less than the cost of replacing then we do recommend repairing.

The way our shop factors repair costs is just the cost of the part and any shipping plus the cost of the labor to install it.  Pretty straight forward.  A good example would be a broken screen on a laptop.  We order the new screen and then install it for around $160.  If the laptop costs more than that to replace we would recommend fixing it.  If the laptop isn’t worth that much we would recommend replacing and then moving the data from the old laptop to the new one.

Personally I am a big fan of repair and work hard to get all the mileage possible out of my tech.  In the long run I find that doing this saves money and allows me to keep computer workstations in play for five years or more.  Normally the only reason we replace our tech items is when a system won’t work with another system due to age, like a 32bit computer not working with a 64bit program.  I am able to bring my cost of ownership down by repairing or upgrading my tech items because we are able to use the tech longer.

Category: General

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