How to Know if Your iPhone Is Under Warranty

Broken iPhone
image credit Tyler Finck www.sursly.com/Moment Open/Getty Images

Knowing whether your iPhone or iPod is still under warranty is crucial when you need tech support or repairs from Apple. Very few of us probably keep track of the exact dates when we bought our iPhones or iPods, so we aren't sure when the warranty expires. But if your iPhone needs a repair, knowing whether your device is still in its warranty period can be the difference between a small repair fee and spending hundreds of dollars.

It's a good idea to find out your warranty status before you contact Apple. Luckily, Apple makes checking the warranty of any iPod, iPhone, Apple TV, Mac, or iPad easy thanks to a warranty-checking tool on its website. All you need is your device's serial number. Here's what to do:

  1. Your first step in learning your device's warranty status is to go to Apple's warranty checker tool
  2. Enter the serial number of the device whose warranty you want to check. On an iOS device like the iPhone, there are two ways to find this:
    • Tap Settings, then General, then About and scroll to the bottom
    • Sync the device with iTunes. The device's serial number will be at the top of the management screen next to the image of the device
  3. Enter the serial number into the warranty checker (and the CAPTCHA) and click Continue
  4. When you do this, you'll see 5 pieces of information:
    • The type of device it is
    • Whether the purchase date is valid (which is required for getting in-warranty support)
    • Has telephone support expired or when it's project to expire. Free telephone support is available for a limited time after the device was been purchased. When it expires, telephone support is charged on a per-call basis
    • Is the device still in warranty for repairs and service and when will that coverage expire
    • Is the device eligible to have its warranty extended via AppleCare or does it already have an active AppleCare policy?

    If the device isn't registered, coverage is expired, or AppleCare can be added, click the link next to the item you want to take action on.

    What To Do Next

    If your device is still covered under warranty, you can: 

    • Add AppleCare+. If your device is no longer under warranty, but is still eligible for AppleCare, it's usually a smart decision to buy AppleCare before contacting Apple for support. If you think you're going to need a repair, AppleCare can make the cost a lot more manageable.

    The Standard iPhone Warranty

    The standard warranty that comes with every iPhone includes a period of free phone tech support and limited coverage for hardware damage or failure. To learn the full details of the iPhone warranty, check out Everything You Need to Know About the iPhone Warranty and AppleCare.

    Extending Your Warranty: AppleCare vs. Insurance

    If you've had to pay for just one expensive phone repair in the past, you may want to extend your warranty on future devices. You have two choices for this: AppleCare and phone insurance.

    AppleCare is the extended warranty program offered by Apple. It takes the iPhone's standard warranty and extends phone support and hardware coverage for a full two years. Phone insurance is like any other insurance—you pay a monthly premium, have deductibles and restrictions, etc.

    If you're in the market for this kind of coverage, AppleCare is the only way to go. Insurance is expensive and often provides very limited coverage.

    For more on this, read Six Reasons You Should Never Buy iPhone Insurance.