Apple Offers Free Hard Drive Replacement for iMac 2009-2011 Models

Performance-wise, Apple iMacs are really good, but like any other machines out there, they do have their own set of problems.

After purchasing my first iMac (mid-2010 model but was purchased in early 2011), everything was running smooth for a couple of months, but one day my iMac finally broke down — it stopped working for no reason at all. I figured out the problem was with the hard drive of my iMac which was always acting up from day one.

As we do not have an official Apple Store in India, I had to take my iMac to the genius folks at the Apple reseller store who, after diagnosing the problem, replaced my iMac with a new hard drive. The whole HD replacement process took almost two weeks, if I remember correctly.

iMac’s Hard Drive was Replaced for a Reason

In 2011, Apple admitted that they shipped iMacs with faulty hard drives, and introduced a program to replace hard drives with newer ones on iMacs that were sold between May 2011 and July 2011. This program was clearly not for my iMac, as the unit I had was manufactured in October 2010 and was purchased in January 2011.

My iMac was replaced because it was under the one-year warranty plan — not because it was shipped with faulty hard drive, at least that’s what Apple thought.

Apple Updates its Hard Drive Replacement Program

Apparently, Apple was wrong. Updated today, this page titled “iMac 1TB Seagate Hard Drive Replacement Program” reveals that even the iMacs older than 2011 (includes 2009 and 2010 models) were distributed with faulty HD.

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Here’s an important snippet from the page:

Apple has determined that certain Seagate 1TB hard drives used in 21.5-inch and 27-inch iMac systems may fail. These systems were sold between October 2009 and July 2011. Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider (AASP) will replace affected hard drives free of charge.

To find out if your iMac qualifies for a free hard drive upgrade, simply visit the page (link here) and enter your Mac’s serial number. Guess who is lucky today? Yes, my iMac is eligible for a free upgrade:

The iMac serial number you entered is eligible for this program. Please follow the instructions to have your hard drive replaced.

I am not sure if I need to replace the hard drive, but I will update this post as soon as I get in touch with Apple representatives. For now, if your iMac qualifies for this program, I’d recommend you to backup the hard drive data and take it to the Apple store.