Hard drives that have become non-functional through normal use, and have had data recovery performed on them by third-party companies specializing in data recovery services can be returned to Apple for warranty service. This includes products covered by the AppleCare Protection Plan. The cost of any data recovery attempts is not covered by the Apple Limited Warranty.

Cheap recovery services. One of the most important things to watch out for are data recovery shops that are charging very little for recovery. These are shops that often just want to get as many drives in as possible, attempt quick data recovery on all of them, and sometimes try quick recovery methods that are not safe for a drive.

Typically, if the factory seal on the hard drive is broken or removed, the hard drive will be excluded from coverage, however, if a label from third-party companies specializing in data recovery is on such a hard drive, Apple will not exclude coverage on that basis.

Drives that are no longer functional due to an issue beyond normal usage—such as damage from an impact, being dropped, exposure to moisture or other circumstances outside of normal usage—are not acceptable for warranty exchange regardless of whether data recovery is performed.

Use of third-party companies specializing in data recovery is at the sole discretion of the customer. They are not Apple Authorized Service Providers, nor does Apple warrant any services performed by these companies.

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