What to Look for In An Extended Warranty

Even though you settle on a price and shake the salesperson’s hand, the buying process is far from over. They’re going to try to sell you on paint protection, maintenance plans, and other warranties.

One of the most expensive add-ons is an extended warranty. These service contracts give you peace of mind and can offer excellent coverage. But not all of them do. The person selling the warranty is in it to make money, so you need to do your research.

An extended warranty is meant to cover your car after the manufacturer’s warranty expires, so this is something you typically purchase for an older used car. In theory, it covers major breakdowns and helps you with the high cost of repairs.

Here are some questions you should ask yourself before you commit to an extended warranty for your used vehicle.

Who Stands Behind the Warranty?

The company who offers the warranty may not have very good reviews. Extended warranties should be backed by the manufacturer or another reputable company that gets good reviews for excellent service and coverage.

Make sure you can use the warranty across the country and not just at a specific location. Some extended warranties are backed by the dealership or company where you bought the car and can only be used at their location.

The Best Price

Are you getting the best price? Do your research to see if you can get the same or better coverage elsewhere for cheaper. Any warranty company should be willing to let you do this. Get as many quotes as you can and compare price and coverage.

Sometimes the company will claim that the price on the warranty is non-negotiable, but that may not be the case. If you find a competitive rate, they may be willing to match it to get your business, so it doesn’t hurt to ask.

One of the only advantages of buying an extended warranty at the dealership, when you buy the car is to finance the cost as part of the purchase. If you can afford to pay for the extended warranty separately, you’ll likely get a better deal.

Look at the Coverage

Inclusion warranties list what is covered. They’re not as comprehensive, and you should read it thoroughly, so you know what you’re getting. They don’t cover parts that will eventually break, and they offer tiers of coverage with different pricing.

Exclusion warranties list what is not covered. It’s a much shorter list and gives you much more comprehensive coverage. If you have a choice and can afford it, these warranties are the best option.

You should also be familiar with how filing a claim works. Does the company pay up front for covered repairs, or reimburse you later?

Evaluate Your Need

Have you had experience with expensive car repairs in the past? Does having an extended warranty give you the peace of mind you need? If you answered yes, then perhaps an extended warranty that doesn’t quite cover everything is still worth the cost, even if you never need it.

If you don’t anticipate problems or know how to fix a lot of repairs yourself, you may not need the coverage. AAA, a trusted mechanic, and other maintenance programs may give you what you need.

Vehicle dependability continues to improve with every model year. Buying a used car from a used car dealer isn’t nearly as risky as it used to be. You need to evaluate your need for an extended warranty carefully.

If you find a reputable dealer like Southwest Motors, you’ll find an extensive selection, fair prices, and friendly staff to help. Check out their used cars, trucks, and SUVs today.

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