On 7/4/15 I purchased for $199 a GME MT400 EPIRB for my boat. The unit was advertised with the following sticker 'Free battery replacement 6 + 6 = 12 years. As 6 years were now up I emailed GME regarding the ‘free’ replacement battery. They advised I would be up for mailing costs to them which was acceptable
Good to see that where are still businesses around that have long memories and uphold promises made in the past in relation to their products.
The postage seems a reasonable cost to get a replacement battery to provide another 6 years of serviceable life…which is critical for an EPIRB.
Thanks for letting us know about a business that actually supports their product not just talks about it.
I wouldn’t be too congratulatory to GME about this.
AU/NZ standard 4280.1 for EPIRBS for maritime or aviation use maintain that the batteries must be replaced at the designated expiry date, and by the manufacturer or authorised delegate.
If they did not provide a battery replacement service, their devices would not be compliant and could not be sold.
GME as part of their original purchase price give you one replacement battery when the first expires.
Next one will not be free.
Assume this is the arrangement per one seller. The whole unit needs to be returned to GME.
On expiry many owners of other models and brands may elect to purchase a newer replacement than pay to have the old unit refurbished and a new battery installed. The expired unit needs to be properly disposed of.
More on beacons and maintenance
‘Servicing - Beacons
If the beacon battery was replaced or serviced by a non-certified service centre then the beacon is non-compliant for carriage requirements and there is a risk the beacon may not function correctly .
The GME deal appears generous. The MT400 is no longer available. Note GME current 600 series units have a 10 year battery life, and no free end of life service including battery.
By the time the replacement battery becomes U/S, I would have had 12 years of use. EPIRB technology even now is very advanced and in fact I may not be able to use my current EPIRB within the next 2 years.
Most electronic devices have a life of up to around 13 years - so the free battery replacement and getting 12 years you have ‘scored’ well.