Here’s how Apple will assess your Watch for warranty repairs

Apple Watch teardown

Just like every other Apple product, Watch will be inspected by retail staff when you bring it into store for repair under warranty. Here’s exactly how Apple will determine whether your device is eligible for repair, according to a leaked internal document.

Obtained by 9to5Macthe guidelines help Apple staff decide whether your Watch is covered by Apple’s standard warranty, or AppleCare+, which extends coverage to up to two years and provides up to two replacements for accidental damage.

Issues Apple will repair under warranty, at no cost to you, include:

  • Dirt or debris under the display or pixel anomalies
  • Back cover repairs only when there is no evident the device has been pried apart
  • Condensation in the heart rate sensor windows

Some of the things Apple will repair out of warranty, which you will likely have to pay for, include:

  • Cracked or missing digital crown caps
  • Extreme abrasion, puncture holes, or damage to the buttons or crown
  • Chips or cracks in glass exposing internals
  • Back covers with evidence of prying or enclosure damage
  • Bent or split enclosures
  • Missing or removed band release mechanisms
  • Cracks in back cover

In certain cases, Apple will simply refuse to repair or replace your Watch. The device will just be returned to you, and it will be up to you to get it fixed elsewhere, or simply by a new device. Reasons for this include:

  • Disassembled units or missing parts
  • Catastrophic damage that leaves the Watch destroyed or in multiple pieces
  • Counterfeit or third-party parts and unauthorized modifications

9to5Mac notes Apple may repair devices with catastrophic damage that are covered by AppleCare+, but it will likely depend on how they’ve been damaged.

If your Watch got stuck in a house fire, for instance, the company may show some sympathy. But if you smashed it to pieces just to see how durable it was, that’s not accidental, and you’ll likely be turned away.

Unlike other Apple products, it’s thought Watch repairs and even exchanges won’t be handles in-store — at least initially. Instead, devices will need to be mailed to Apple’s damaged device service, which will then take care of it.