An extended car warranty protects you against expensive repairs, labor costs, and item replacement costs. Most cars have factory warranties and don’t need extra coverage. However, when you are about to get a used car, extended warranties may be a good idea.
Used cars are economical and in mint condition. Most used cars pass inspections and background checks fairly well. Your excitement to acquire your newest ride should not cloud your judgment. Make sure you check your warranty expiry date. The used car may seem good on paper now but there are no guarantees about the future.
All extended car warranties vary in terms of repairs and parts they cover. Some are similar to factory warranties while others include parts and repairs that are usually neglected but equally important.
For standard warranties, they cover mostly expensive parts such as the engine, transmissions, suspension, gearbox, and the car’s technology system (ECU). The extended warranty for used cars mostly leaves out airbags, structural rust, air conditioning systems, brakes, and oil leaks. However, comprehensive warranties cover such items at an extra cost.
Always confirm what the warranty covers at the start of the policy. Shop around for better deals and read the entire contract keenly. Look out for inclusive offers the company has for you. Some companies are kind enough to provide a clear inclusion list detailing all parts that are covered.
On the other hand, you might come across a list of things not covered for emphasis. Some companies prefer to state things not covered for clarity. This means, you as the consumer will have to cater to the repair cost of items not covered. When dealing with a new car, usually this is not a major concern but for a used car, you might want to think carefully.
Remember, a used car has been through a lot and they are prone to breaking down. You have no idea how the previous owner handled the car and repairs or replacement of items can be expensive. It’s important to research the model’s reliability and previous issues to have a rough idea of what to expect. This information should guide you when looking for the best cover.
After you’ve decided the type of coverage you’d prefer, the next step is to find a policy that is pocket friendly. It’s important to understand your credit score and what you can afford. You don’t want to commit to a cover that bleeds you dry. Hence, look out for companies with affordable payment plans that will both protect you and give you peace of mind.
When it comes to cost, there’s no standard pricing for all extended car warranties. Figures vary between providers, coverage plans, and customers. Determining the final cost is a challenge and heavily depends on factors such as:
Car model: Some cars are expensive to cover than others. For instance, luxury cars such as Mercedes, Audi’s, BMW, and other luxury series cost higher than the likes of Toyotas, Honda, Nissan, and Buick. The parts are harder to find and cost an arm, leg, and probably an extra organ. If you also plan to use your car as a commercial vehicle, you may require a special plan that will cost more.
Car age limits: as the car gets older, there are higher chances for tear and wear or other technical failures. In terms of mileage and years, plan providers will try to maneuver costs for your faulty parts. Generally, older cars require more repairs and may affect the car’s eligibility to get a cover. Older vehicles are expensive to cover and warranty providers will set a price that reflects your car’s probability to break down.
Driving history: Some drivers are careless and tend to mishandle their cars. Warranty providers take into account the client’s driving history to determine the final cost. Of course, they are in business and want to protect themselves from reckless behavior. They would like to know if you are likely to take care of your car, regular checkups, and the chances you would get into an accident. Your past driving experience can lower or increase the cost of insurance policies.
Coverage: Every warranty is different from the next. The basics are generally affordable but with repairs and replacement, the provider will set the cost. Comprehensive plans are expensive. As you pick out special or uncommon inclusions such as hybrid drive trains and electronics, remember it’s going to weigh on your final cost.
Long-term Warranty: The term of your extended car warranty may also determine your cost. A short-term plan is simple and affordable and most times with fewer inclusions. However, with a long-term warranty, the provider considers mileage, the vehicle’s current age, and odometer. If you are planning to have the car for several years, the long-term plan is much better for you.
1. You have the opportunity to choose and tweak a plan to fit in your budget. Considering factors like mileage, lengthy coverage period, and detailed inclusion list, you have the chance to pick the most affordable plan.
2. You can negotiate your final price. The cost is not final and you can snug discount prices from your dealership. In this case, negotiating translates to the offers the third party is willing to provide. It is important to note, affordable prices can also decrease your interest on your car loan. Warranty providers are allowed to combine your extended car warranty with your loan to avoid confusion. This means, if you get an auto loan it covers both the car and plan with attractive interest.
3. Another sneaky trick you can use to drive down the cost is by shopping for a rival mechanical breakdown or auto repair insurance parallel to your extended warranty. Since the insurance will come from competitors, the third-party providers will try to lure you in with great offers. They will try to poach your business and you will get better deals in return.
An extended car warranty should never confuse you into signing things you don’t understand. Now that you know what the plan covers and the factors determining the cost, you can make an informed decision. Research your warranty providers beforehand, check their credibility, how they handle claims, and their offers. There are plenty of options out there, so it is recommended to take your time and scout for the one that best suits you.