If you own a car or are looking to buy one, you’ve probably come across the term ‘extended auto warranty‘ before. This type of auto warranty may be beneficial when you want extra protection for your car. But that’s only if you find a reliable provider. Extended auto warranties can be a bit complicated, so if you’re thinking of getting one, you have to completely understand it first.
There are many misconceptions when it comes to extended auto warranties. Some drivers don’t even know what it is, and most will think it’s just the same as a typical insurance.
What’s An Extended Auto Warranty?
The great thing about new cars is that it comes with a standard factory warranty. You can look at it like a deal you’re making with the automaker. This makes your automaker responsible for the repairs from faulty manufacturing, and problems coming from machine failure, but often within a limited time only.
There are options to extend your auto warranty before or after the factory warranty ends. But this will also mean your car will be subject to a new ‘vehicle service contract’. This is because most car manufacturers’ protection plan cannot legally be called an ‘extended auto warranty’.
Thus, some brands use the more technical term for extending auto warranty, which is ‘vehicle service contract’.
So, if you want to get an actual extended auto warranty, here are the things you should do:
Understand The Types Of Extended Warranty
There are two major types of extended warranties.
1. The first is given by the carmaker, which is called OEM or Original Equipment Manufacturers. This includes carmakers like Ford, Toyota, Chevrolet.
OEM tends to copy what was offered when the vehicle was new. This is an extension of the original length of the coverage and mileage.
Manufacturer warranties or OEM warranties are available in two variations:
- Powertrain warranty, which covers the engine and transmission of your vehicle. This warranty covers defects in workmanship causing your vehicle’s engine and transmission to perform improperly.
- Bumper to bumper or limited warranty, which only covers limited items in the vehicle. This often includes navigation systems, onboard computers, power seats, and many others.
2. The second type of extended auto warranty is the aftermarket warranty. You can get them from third-party vendors, such as insurance and warranty companies that are not directly associated with the car brand.
Aftermarket warranties have a similar coverage with OEM warranties, but often differ in terms of exclusions and more specific rules. Aftermarket or third-party warranties have more requirements. They also have stricter limitations, huge deductibles, and fewer locations for repair services.
If you’re looking for the right Extended Auto Warranty, make sure you read the terms and agreements thoroughly before making any decision. This will ensure that you know exactly what you’re getting into. For example, the following details:
- Administration of coverage: Third-party warranties will make you cover the repair fees and just reimburse the charges to you later on. This process, however, takes a long time because you’ll have to file a claim first. This can take months before you get what you paid for.
- Cost of the warranty: Third-party is less costly than the OEM. In some cases, a third-party warranty is the only available option. This will be the case if you buy a pre-owned car from a used-car dealership.
Check The Qualifications
The common misconception that buyers have about extending the vehicle coverage is that the lower the price, the better. You might also think that this is the way to get the most out of your money. However, this might not be true, especially if you don’t even qualify for the coverage you want.
Qualifying for the coverage you want doesn’t have to be difficult though, especially if you can remain on top of a few critical matters. Some of the things to take note of are:
- Well-maintained cars get better options: You should have a routine for maintaining your cars. Make sure to follow a schedule for fluid replacement, wheel balances, and oil changes. This will make sure that your car is at its optimal capacity making it much likely for warranty providers to accept your car.
- The lower the mileage, the higher the chances: This works the same way as the previous qualification. Your car tends to have more wear and tear if the mileage is higher. That’s why cars with lower mileage have more tendency to be approved.
- New cars are welcome: If you’ve a newer car, you’ll most likely qualify for the coverage. As your car gets older, protection coverages tend to decrease. It’s important to know that you shouldn’t wait for your car to be outdated before signing up for a warranty.
Review The Contract
Another tip is to look around the market first. See what other manufacturers and dealerships have to offer. Most importantly, ensure that you fully understand what your contract is saying before you even sign anything.
It’s essential that you completely understand the contents of the contract, and you should consider reviewing these areas:
- Deductibles and upfront costs
- Covered and uncovered repairs
- Full warranty coverage
Find The Right Provider
Consider what your needs are, and look for providers than can address them. This process might take you a long time, but it doesn’t have to be difficult as this is something you can do online. However, you should proceed with caution to avoid getting scammed.
Be honest about your needs. Car warranties will be useless if it won’t even cover what you need. It’s important to compare and analyze warranty providers and what they can offer. When you have all the information you need, you’ll feel more confident about making the right decision.
No matter what type you get, an extended auto warranty should give you peace of mind. Should you be in a less-than-ideal situation, you’ll have the option to minimize your financial risks. Just remember that extended auto warranties tend to come at high prices. So, before you decide to make a purchase, you have to make sure that you fully understand the offer and its coverage. This way, you’ll avoid regrets and costly decisions that may come with owning a vehicle.