Does Opening Laptops Break Warranty?

(Background: So I messed up. Last night my water bottle spilt on my dell laptop. I left it upside down for a while but needed to get some work done and ended up using it for like 5 hours straight no issue.
Left it on while I slept and woke to it off. It wouldn't turn on properly and I smelled smoke so I turned it off.)
So, I was thinking of taking it to a local repair, but I'm concerned that if I do, the remaining months of warranty I have with dell might get void…?
Dell has also offered to look at it for free but they expect the whole process of receiving, checking, repairing whatever, sending back to take 10-14 business days.

It may be a stupid question due to my not thinking clearly atm, but am I better off going with dell or trying a local place?

Edit: thanks for the replies all.
So what I've gathered from both replies here and generally looking stuff up online and calling services:
* dell is the better option to get it fixed because of customised parts
* The basic warranty for the remainder of the time is already void even if this incident is repaired
* Repairs probably will cost more then I paid (I got it for around $500 during black friday. So guess I'll start looking for new laptop now, but will be hard to find that price again)
* I should've turned it off for a long time/taken it in for repair before turning it on again, even though it was working fine for hours.
* H&C might cover this stuff (but I never got h&C, not a homeowner or credit card carrier.) (Also didn't get the premium dell warranty cos it would've been a 30% increase in price, which I guess shows that would've been worth it)

Anyways, thanks all. I'll wait on the quote from Dell and hope for a similar laptop deal/use a crummy old one in the meantime.


  • +1 vote

    Think they (Dell) have to provide that whatever you did caused the issue. But usually, water spillage is not covered by warranty. It MiGHT be covered on your H&C insurance

  • +10 votes

    Warranty is already void if water made it's way into the laptop. Dell can usually tell since there would be residue / corrosion on logic boards and there could sometimes be water damage indicator (though I've personally never seen this in the innards of many laptops I've opened)

    Left it on while I slept and woke to it off. It wouldn't turn on properly and I smelled smoke so I turned it off.)

    Sounds like corrosion has already happened. Or possibly you power up laptop's motherboard while it was wet, causing current to flow in unexpected ways, potentially damaging components.

    That's why you don't turn on the laptop till you know it's completely dry. You must remove the battery from the laptop (because if the battery is in, there's still a closed circuit) to prevent shorts.


    Google your laptop name with "manual" or something at the end. The last Dell Ispirion model (or however you spell it) had pretty simple instructions for how to open the laptop.


    I would go with Dell if it's still under warranty.

  • +3 votes

    What difference would it make? It's already water damaged. Warranty isn't going to solve your issue as this is user fault.
    Do you have accidental insurance?


    I’ll tell you what, go to your local computer repair shop. Straight up ask them, good chance they’ll advice you on what to do…
    Best of luck

  • +7 votes

    Does Opening Laptops Break Warranty?

    No, but spilling your soda on it sure as shit does…


    Liquid in computer?
    Warranty void.

  • +1 vote

    Pretty sure spilling water on your notebook is what voids the warranty not taking it to get repaired.

    might want to look into contents insurance if you have it for accidental damage.


      ah, gotcha, thanks,


    Unless you have a water-resistant device, then the warranty is goneeeeeee….
    If you have accidental cover attached to your contents insurance, then you should be able to claim via them. Keep in mind to check your excess though.

    Otherwise, get the credit card out!