My Canon S100 Lens Error problem

I’ve been reading for some time about the many Lens Error problems encountered by Canon S100 camera owners. After seven months of use, my S100 got hit by the problem. Believe me, I treat my cameras with tender loving care.

I was simply taking a few photos, shut the camera off then on again about five minutes later. Oh boy: lens error message on the LCD, lens stuck open and the camera wouldn’t restart. My S100 was totally unusable.

So I sent off the camera to a Canon repair facility. I had to pay the shipping costs, which set me back about $18.00.

Fortunately, I have several other cameras to use in the interim. But I feel for owners who have the S100 as their only camera. Imagine the camera going kaput during a once-in-a-lifetime trip?! How maddening! How disconcerting!

Canon S100 product advisory

At least Canon announced a product advisory for the S100 and will fix affected cameras for free. The first and second digits of affected cameras have serial numbers ranging from”29″ through”41.” For example: “29xxxxxxxxxx”, “30xxxxxxxxxx”, ”41xxxxxxxxxx.”

Canon says the lens may become disconnected in certain environmental conditions such as high temperature and/or humidity.

I live in Florida and have used dozens of cameras in a hot and humid environment including my Canon SD700, SD890, S90 and XSi, all of which I still use. I never had a problem with any of them! Under normal use, we have every expectation that the S100 should work in this type of environment. But, as many of us learned the hard way, it doesn’t because of a manufacturing debacle.

The repair process

Having to send in a camera for repair is a pain, however the pain is somewhat lessened because the actual process is relatively easy.

I went to the Canon site and filled out the information online. An acknowledgment was sent to me including were I could access and print out the information including mailing instructions, mailing  label and packing slip. Canon recommends insuring the camera and mailing it with a tracking number. You can check the site for the repair status.

In three business days after shipping, I received an email confirmation from Canon that they received the camera. It included information to track the repair and the return shipping status.

From the day Canon received my S100 to the day I received it at my front door took only four business days. Not bad!

Update: a week and a half after receiving the camera back from Canon repair the LCD broke, once again rendering it unusable. Read about it here.

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