Outlook and your warranties

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Add a calendar appointment in Outlook to mark when the warranty on your computer or electrical goods will expire.

Jason from sunny San Antonio writes:

“Just a note about something I use Outlook for. I add a calendar appointment to mark when the warranty on a computer, electrical goods etc will expire. It’s easy to lose track and pay for service you could have got for free.”

Jason is absolutely right, there’s no reason why the Outlook calendar can’t be used for events beyond things you have to attend yourself.

See below for some extra ways to make use of this concept within Outlook.


EVEN BETTER OUTLOOK AND YOUR WARRANTIES

We like Jason’s suggestion of using the Outlook calendar to record the warranty period on products.

Here are some ideas to make full use of Outlook’s features in this situation:

– Make sure the full name and description of the appliance is included in one of the calendar fields. I use the ‘Location’ field but you can put it in the notes if you wish. If you do this, you can quickly find the ‘event’ later with a search using Outlook’s search or the much faster tools from Google, Windows etc. See our Desktop Search Handbook for details.

– Add a reminder to the warranty expiry date so that you get an alert sometime before the free service period expires. This gives you time to take action before the due date.

– It’s possible that you might need two reminders when there’s a manufacturer’s warranty period then an extended warranty provided by another company. For example you might create an event for 2 years away when the maker’s warranty expires plus another event for 4 years away when the extended warranty that you purchased ends.

– A similar thing would apply if the warranty ends in stages with full coverage for a time and then it switches to a limited warranty for a longer period.

– Scan in all the documentation (receipts etc) and attach them to the calendar item. This saves you hunting for the paperwork later. You may be able to find text in the contents of the attachments, depending on the search system you use and the way you save the scanned items, you may be able to find text in the contents of the attachments. Again our popular Desktop Search Handbook covers this in some detail.

– You could create a category called ‘Warranties’ or ‘Appliances’ to group all like Outlook items together.

The same information could also be added as a task with a reminder to pop-up on or before the due date.

 


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