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LAST UPDATED:  January 27, 2021

A Look at CarMax’s Warranty Policies

CarMax’s warranty options will provide you with peace of mind.

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PUBLISHED ON January 27, 2021

CarMax is the largest used-car distributor in America. The first CarMax used-car store opened its doors in one of America’s oldest major cities, Richmond, Virginia, in September 1993; ever since the business has skyrocketed and is now a Fortune 500 company with 215 stores across the United States.

The company has tens of thousands of used cars available nationwide and has sold over 9 million cars. So, you could say CarMax knows a thing-or-two about vehicles and warranties.

CarMax Warranty Overview

Whether your car still has a manufacturer’s warranty does not matter — if you buy a CarMax vehicle, it automatically comes with a CarMax Limited Warranty at no extra cost to you. The warranty covers the vehicle’s major systems plus hundreds of interior and exterior car parts, including labor costs.

The term length of a CarMax Limited Warranty is 90 days or 4,000 miles (whichever comes first) and provides a seven-day money-back guarantee

Since most car owners will leave the lot with a used vehicle and own their cars for longer than what the Limited Warranty provides, CarMax also offers an extended service plan called MaxCare.

As optional extended service plans, MaxCare is an extended warranty you can choose to buy at the time of your vehicle purchase. No matter the year, make, model, or mileage of the vehicle, MaxCare allows you to go beyond the CarMax Limited Warranty to remain covered during your long-term vehicle ownership.

The MaxCare extended service plan increases your warranty coverage for up to 5 years or 125,000 miles (whichever comes first) from the date of purchase.

  • Comprehensive Coverage: Both CarMax Limited Warranty and MaxCare Extended Warranty covers the engine, transmission, drivetrain, electrical systems, electronics, steering, suspension, climate control, and cooling system.
  • Roadside Assistance: Get 24/7 emergency roadside assistance up to $100 per occurrence, which does not include any replacement items (Does not cover fuel or tires). Effective the day, your extended service plan begins.
  • Rental Reimbursement: For overnight covered repairs, get up to $40 a day for 7-days for a rental.
  • Nationwide Protection: You are covered anywhere within the United States or Canada.
  • Extras: Includes coverage for all CarMax accessories.

Pros

  • Coverage for the most critical systems
  • Transferable coverage (restrictions apply)
  • MaxCare can be tailored to your monthly budget.
  • You get a $50 discount on your deductible at any CarMax Service Center or RepairPal Certified shop. (Some state limitations may apply.)
  • Offers many service center options, including RepairPal certified repair facilities

Cons

  • MaxCare Extended Warranty is only available at the time of your CarMax vehicle purchase.
  • You work with a different customer service group than CarMax when using MaxCare.
  • You will need to speak with a representative to learn about pricing, plan terms, and length.
  • Must consider other third-party vehicle service contract companies to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
  • All CarMax prices are non-negotiable.
  • Offers fewer reimbursement benefits than most extended service plans.
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CarShield

CarShield — USA’s #1 Auto Protection Provider

CarShield pays claims directly to a US or Canadian ASE-Certified® repair facility of your choice. Our contracts have low or no deductibles to prevent stress to your wallet at a critical time. Never worry about being stranded somewhere after a breakdown. All of our vehicle repair contracts include towing services to transport you and your vehicle to a safe repair facility.

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Carchex

Nationwide coverage for cars new and old

CARCHEX has something for everyone. Have an old car? No problem. Live in California? Not an issue. CARCHEX 's plethora of warranty plans includes options for cars up to twenty years old with up to 250,000 miles, regardless of any existing or expired warranties. Click below or call 1-877-207-3304 for a free quote.

Get a Free Quote

Warranty In-Depth

CarMax’s extended warranty plan, MaxCare, is a third-party service that is not sold by CarMax. The two companies share a contract to offer a comprehensive service plan. Not a lot of details about pricing or coverage is listed online about MaxCare. Yet, you can learn more about the buying process of MaxCare Extended Warranty on the CarMax website.

More information about MaxCare coverage is listed below.

Comprehensive Coverage

The MaxCare extended service plan increases your warranty coverage for up to 5 years or 125,000 miles (whichever comes first) from the date of purchase

  • Both CarMax Limited Warranty and MaxCare Extended Warranty cover the vehicle’s engine, transmission, drivetrain, electrical systems, electronics, steering, suspension, climate control, and cooling system.

CarMax and MaxCare warranties do not cover regular maintenance services (like oil changes and tune-ups), any aftermarket accessories (like GPS, radar detectors, and radios), specific vehicle components and conditions caused by corrosion, collision, or inadequate maintenance, maintenance parts (batteries, air conditioning refrigerant, engine coolant, drive belts, brake pads and shoes). 

The warranty does not cover collision damage, modifications (outside those made by the manufacturer or its representative), and any destruction from negligence or misuse. Suspension work, tires, wheels, catalytic converter, manual transmission work, painting, bumpers, or body parts alignment are also not covered. 

It also does not cover any damage caused by towing a trailer or another vehicle with a car not equipped for towing as recommended by the manufacturer. Using your vehicle as a commercial vehicle—such as a taxi, police car, or delivery service—will also cause your warranties to become invalid.

Roadside Assistance

If ever stranded on the roadside due to your car breaking down, MaxCare offers 24/7 emergency roadside assistance. If the service is needed more than once, it is good to know that you receive up to $100 per occurrence. However, Roadside Assistance does not include any replacement items (like fuel or tires). The plan becomes effective the day your extended service plan begins.

Rental Reimbursement

When your car is in the shop getting repairs, it can be very frustrating not to have your vehicle to get to work or another destination. Do not worry; MaxCare offers Rental Reimbursement for overnight repairs of up to $40 a day for up to seven days. You can still get from Point A to Point B worry-free, with MaxCare Extended Warranty.

Nationwide Protection

If you are a traveler or plan on taking trips anywhere within the United States or Canada, MaxCare extended service plan has you covered. 

Additional Coverage

You also receive coverage for all CarMax accessories.

Things We Like

CarMax’s extended service plan, MaxCare, is beneficial to have for various reasons. It is crucial to add an extended warranty if you need more coverage, especially on used-vehicles. What we do like is that when your vehicle needs repairs, MaxCare allows you to use any ASE-certified repair facilities, including national chains, independent shops, and dealership service centers.

Although some restrictions apply, we also like the fact that the MaxCare extended service plan is transferable. Car owners looking to sell their used-vehicle will not lose the plan; instead, the warranty goes with the vehicle.

Another extended warranty benefit of MaxCare is that you may cancel the plan at any time as long as your vehicle is financed through CarMax—any refund will be credited to your finance account. Your refund amount is prorated, as it is based on the term or mileage of the vehicle.

Feeling overwhelmed?


You aren't alone. Warranties have many benefits that aren't always clear. If you're new to the industry, check out our  Extended Warranty Guide  that helps explain some key fundamentals.

Things We Don’t Like

What we did not like about MaxCare Extended Warranty is that it offers fewer plan options and reimbursement benefits than most of the other extended service plans. 

Although we did like a part of the MaxCare cancellation policy, we dislike car owners possibly getting a cancellation fee if they did not finance their vehicle through one of CarMax’s finance experts.

It was also challenging to find information about MaxCare, which is unlike CarMax’s straightforward car pricing system. The price and term lengths for MaxCare are not disclosed online, making it impossible to share these vital pieces of information. Since no details are available, we recommend requesting a sample contract before purchasing MaxCare extended service plan. Once you review it and gain the information you need, you can make a knowledgeable buying decision.

Common Repair Costs

According to RepairPal, some of the most common issues and repair costs with used vehicles are shown in the following examples:

  • Chevrolet Cruze (Brake Vacuum Pump Replacement): The average cost for a Chevrolet Cruze brake vacuum pump replacement is between $156 and $167. These amounts do not include labor costs, which are estimated between $44 and $56, while parts are priced at $112. Taxes and fees are also not included in prices. Charges may also vary based on location.
  • Ford Bronco (Vehicle Speed Sensor Replacement): The average cost for a Ford Bronco vehicle speed sensor replacement is between $89 and $245. These amounts do not include labor costs, which are estimated between $35 and $44, while parts are priced between $53 and $201. Taxes and fees are not included in prices. Costs may also vary based on location.

FAQs

Q: Can I purchase MaxCare after I buy my car?

No. You can only purchase MaxCare at the same time you are buying your CarMax vehicle.

Q: Do all of CarMax’s used vehicles come with a warranty?

Yes. All CarMax vehicles are certified and come with a 90-day/4,000-mile (whichever comes first) limited warranty. However, you will need to purchase a MaxCare extended warranty if you need longer terms. The website suggests that you see a store for written details.

Is CarMax’s Warranty and Extended Service Plan Worth It?

The CarMax Limited Warranty is at no cost to you since it comes with all sold CarMax used vehicles. However, CarMax offers a MaxCare extended warranty, which does come with a price, yet it is considered an affordable choice for coverage. Although the coverage plans are very limited in various ways, Carmax’s Warranty and MaxCare extended plan are good choices for a limited coverage warranty and not a more comprehensive plan.

More Information

Here are a few more resources you can use:

EXTENDED WARRANTY COVERAGE MORE … FOR LESS

Endurance

Save $350 on an Endurance warranty plan with coupon code: DRIVE350

Going with a factory extended warranty is a good option for basic protection, but you can get more and save more with Endurance, ranked the top extended warranty provider by Consumer Advocates, Consumer Affairs, and Retirement Living.

Get a Free Quote

Save $350 with coupon code: DRIVE350

EXTENDED WARRANTY COVERAGE MORE … FOR LESS

CarShield

CarShield — USA’s #1 Auto Protection Provider

CarShield pays claims directly to a US or Canadian ASE-Certified® repair facility of your choice. Our contracts have low or no deductibles to prevent stress to your wallet at a critical time. Never worry about being stranded somewhere after a breakdown. All of our vehicle repair contracts include towing services to transport you and your vehicle to a safe repair facility.

Get a Free Quote

EXTENDED WARRANTY COVERAGE MORE … FOR LESS

Carchex

Nationwide coverage for cars new and old

CARCHEX has something for everyone. Have an old car? No problem. Live in California? Not an issue. CARCHEX 's plethora of warranty plans includes options for cars up to twenty years old with up to 250,000 miles, regardless of any existing or expired warranties. Click below or call 1-877-207-3304 for a free quote.

Get a Free Quote