04-09-2019 09:27 PM
04-09-2019 09:27 PM
Quick disclamer: I am not here seeking for support. I already went through costumer support and am only here to report on the proceeding done over the issue so that the experience can be shared with the team behind designing and engineering the device.
I acquired my Surface Book 2 15'' in April 2018 in pre-order for the PT-PT variant of the device. The device ran without issues for the first months.
First thing that I noticed was that the rubber feet installed on the base of the Book seemed to be bigger than the notch machined to acommodate them. The tip bulged a bit and was sitting about 0.5mm off the notch.
It's understandable that being the two parts made of different materials under tight tolerances might end up making the two not fit exactly well on the final product, specially given that these were made for the first time for a 15'' variant of the Book.
In late November that same tip started peeling off from the Book's base, which I simply pressed back into place to glue it again. The feet usually "snapped" to get over the 0.5mm difference in size between the feet and the notch. The same happened to the pair.
As soon as dirt started getting glued to the gap created, it became more difficult to snap the feet tip back in place. With each subsequent heating and cooling from recharging/GPU activity, the unglueing of the rubber feet kept getting worse.
After a few weeks the two rubber feet were detaching from the base on about 40% on one side and starting to peel off on the other. Due to repetitive reattachement of the unglued stretchs, the rubber feet started developing stress ruptures.
It was at this moment, in February, that I contacted Microsoft online support to seek help for this issue. After contact with a member of support for Microsoft Portugal Surface Support, this is what I learned:
- Replacement rubber feet and tape glue parts were not available for warranty maintenance nor purchase by the user to install;
- Rubber feet damage was considered outside damage and are not covered by warranty;
- Removing the feet and replacing them by a user solution wouldn't void the warranty since it did not interfere with the internals of the computer and would be considered aftermarket personalization (like applying skins or decals to the surface of the device);
- Even if replacement of the feet wouldn't void warranty, the damaged feet should be kept in reservation so that in case of failure of the device due to hardware issues both the device and the feet can be sent together for maintenance;
- The DIY feet should be removable if necessary.
Given the conclusions taken from the chat with the Surface Costumer Service, I decided to remove the damaged feet and glueing tape from the device and, as instructed, were reserved. I then designed and manufactured two new feet in brushed stainless steel and glued it to the device. It has been working without issues for two months already.
After this experience, I suggest the Surface team to review design and engineering of the rubber feet on the Surface Book's base, particularly the Surface Book 2 15'' variant with PT-PT keyboard layout, to check for eventual issues in manufacturing, tolerances, fit and finish of the feet in the base of the device.
I also would recommend reviewing the effectiveness of the solution over repeated use, both in terms of the feet's fatigue resistance to abrasion and heating cycles of the device. Alternatives solutions should be considered.
Given the nature of the part in question, providing replacement parts for existing devices should be considered by labelling the rubber feet as a "consumable" (like the rubber tires of a car).
This concludes my report of the situation. If any more details are needed for further development feel free to ask.