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The warranty is something that is often overlooked as it doesn't affect the projector's performance and people don't think about 'what if something goes wrong'?
But a projector warranty is an important factor to take into account when you are choosing a model.

Different manufacturers offer different types of warranties and sometimes the same manufacturer will offer a different warranty on different models in their range.
If your projector is used everyday and is important to your work you may want a model with the best warranty terms you can find to avoid being inconvenienced.

The different types of warranties

  • RTB / Return To Base: the most basic warranty provided on projectors. If your projector becomes faulty, you have to send it to the manufacturer and wait for it to be repaired and sent back to you. Depending on the manufacturer and their work load it can be a few days or a few weeks.

Note: some manufacturers' repair centres are abroad which can cause more delays and inconvenience.

  • CRR / Collect Repair Return: your projector is collected by the manufacturer and sent to a repair centre to be repaired and then sent back to you.
  • Swap out/loan exchange/loan replacement: the manufacturer will either provide a loan unit while your projector is being repaired or replace your faulty projector with a working one (usually a refurbished unit of equivalent age to yours). This is usually carried out the next working day or within a few days.
  • De-install / re-install: the manufacturer will send an engineer to unplug and remove the projector from the ceiling mount and re-install a working unit. This type of warranty is particularly useful for classrooms, training rooms or businesses where people are not able or authorised to take the projector of its bracket. This is usually carried out the next working day or within a few days.

The length of the warranty

The minimum warranty is 1 year although most manufacturers now offer 3 years warranty on their business models and some offer an exceptional 5 year warranty in the UK.
Some home cinema models also carry a 3 year warranty (some Epson projectors for example) but it's more common for them to be covered for 1 year only.

Should I buy an extended warranty?

Some manufacturers and third parties offer extended warranties that can cover your projector for up to 5 years after purchase and these extensions can be more or less costly.

If you are buying an entry level projector covered by a 3 year warranty, you don't really need an extended warranty as by the time your standard warranty has expired, it is likely you will want to upgrade to a newer model or the cost of a similar model will have dropped heavily.

If however you are buying a high end model that you intend to keep for a while, you may benefit from a warranty extension as it will cost less than a new projector even after a few years.

What is covered by the warranty?

The warranty covers any manufacturing defect on the hardware excluding consumables (e.g lamps).

If you damage your projector either by accident or through misuse unfortunately it is not covered by the warranty.
Before using a new projector read the manufacturer's instructions to ensure you are using it properly.

Lamps, as a consumable, carry their own warranty: usually 30 to 90 days but some come with up to 6 months warranty.