What’s the Best Extended Car Warranty in 2019?
Wondering how to get the best extended car warranty for your vehicle? Check out our guide to the best extended car warranties for 2019.
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Driving your shiny new car off of a dealership lot, you probably feel confident in the vehicle’s reliability. Your salesperson likely gave you a booklet with warranty information that you quickly glanced through. It mentioned your new car was under several types of warranties for a few years and that anything covered under the warranty could be fixed by a dealer.
But what do you do when this warranty expires?
Many people choose to continue to protect their vehicles with an extended car warranty once the factory warranty expires. This guide will help you determine if an extended warranty is worth it for your vehicle. We’ll look at some of the highest-rated warranty companies and what kind of coverage they offer. You’ll learn if an extended warranty is a good idea for you and what you can expect out of a top warranty company.
We’ll also provide the details on CARCHEX. Whether you’re starting to compare prices on the best car warranties or narrowing down your selection, contact CARCHEX for a free quote by calling (877) 225-7247 or answering a few easy questions online.
Top Extended Car Warranty Providers
If you’re considering protecting your vehicle once the manufacturer’s warranty has expired, an extended auto warranty can be a great option. The biggest factor to consider when looking for the best extended car warranty is the rating of the service provider.
Many auto manufacturers give you the option to purchase a brand car protection plan or extended warranty through your dealership. Most of these protection plans limit your ability to choose your own repair shop. Instead, you will likely need to complete any covered car repairs at the dealership where you bought the warranty.
Luckily, many third-party warranty companies exist to better serve car owners looking to protect their vehicles. When choosing a third-party car warranty provider, you will want to make sure the company has great ratings from both existing customers and the Better Business Bureau.
We’ve put together an easy chart below to compare some of the best third-party warranty providers.
Consumer Review Score
- Five coverage levels with up to 10 years of coverage.
- Additional perks like roadside assistance and towing services.
- Flexible payment options.
AA Auto Protection
- Five levels of coverage available.
- Roadside assistance
- Up to 5 years of coverage.
- Four different warranty plans.
Protect My Car
- Available for vehicles up to 10 years old.
- Three coverage plans.
Concord Auto Protect
- Three coverage plans.
Data accurate as of February 2019.
What Is a Car Warranty?
A car warranty is a promise from the vehicle manufacturer that they will repair or replace defects free of charge for a set amount of time. Most car manufacturer warranties are limited warranties, meaning they have some restrictions for what is and isn’t covered. A limited warranty also specifies a certain length of time the vehicle is covered.
How Does a Car Warranty Work?
Your new car warranty from the manufacturer should have details on what is and isn’t covered. When you find yourself facing an issue with the vehicle that’s under warranty, you’ll usually contact the nearest brand dealership and set up an appointment to have the issue fixed. Your dealer should replace or repair the malfunctioning parts at no cost to you.
How Long Does a Car Warranty Last?
Manufacturer car warranties range in terms of time and mileage restrictions for bumper-to-bumper warranties. Although there are other types of warranties included with most new cars, a bumper-to-bumper warranty is usually the most comprehensive.
On the lower end of the warranty spectrum, you will receive a manufacturer’s warranty on a new car for the first three years of ownership or the first 36,000 miles driven, whichever comes first. Brands such as Toyota, Ford, and Chevrolet offer this basic warranty.
Some car companies, on the other hand, offer much longer bumper-to-bumper warranty protection. Volkswagen tops the warranty list with a six-year/72,000-mile warranty, and Hyundai and Kia both offer five-year/60,000-mile warranties for basic coverage. Many of the top luxury brands provide warranties of four years or 50,000 miles. These include BMW, Lexus, and Cadillac.
How Are Extended Car Warranties Different?
You may have heard of an “extended car warranty,” or “vehicle service contract,” but are unsure of the difference between a normal warranty and an extended warranty. Extended car warranties are actually service contracts with a service provider.
This service contract, often called an extended warranty, usually takes effect after your manufacturer’s warranty has expired. The service contract provider promises to pay for covered expenses, much like the manufacturer’s warranty.
The main difference between a manufacturer’s warranty and an extended warranty is that a manufacturer’s warranty is free and included at the time of sale. Service contracts, on the other hand, cost an additional fee and can be added at any time.
What’s Included in an Extended Car Warranty?
Extended auto coverage includes car repairs and replacements for breakdowns that come from normal use. Depending on your plan, it may cover your powertrain, electrical system, air conditioning, and other systems. Most extended warranties do not cover routine maintenance for your vehicle. Things like oil changes, brake pads, and tires are usually the owner’s responsibility.
Types of Extended Warranties
Similar to manufacturer warranties, extended warranties generally fall under three main types. Of these service contract types, most extended warranties are either exclusionary or inclusionary. Exclusionary contracts have a list of items specifically excluded from coverage. Inclusionary warranties, on the other hand, only cover the listed, or included, items.
We’ve outlined some of the basics for each type of warranty below:
- Powertrain: Powertrain warranties offer coverage for the drivetrain of your vehicle. This includes most of the internal parts of the engine and transmission. Many manufacturer powertrain warranties are longer than their basic coverage warranties. Powertrain extended warranties are usually recommended for high-mileage or older vehicles.
- Bumper-to-bumper: Generally an exclusionary service contract, bumper-to-bumper warranties usually offer the most comprehensive coverage. Most bumper-to-bumper service contracts include the car’s mechanical systems, except for certain excluded items. The excluded components of a bumper-to-bumper extended warranty should be listed in the fine print of the warranty details.
- Named component: A named component extended warranty is usually an inclusionary contract. You might consider a named component contract the opposite of a bumper-to-bumper warranty. Instead of a list of excluded parts or services, a named component service contract gives you a list of included parts. Anything else is not covered.
Benefits of an Extended Car Warranty
Purchasing an extended car warranty can be a great way to continue to protect your car after the manufacturer’s warranty has expired. As cars become more complex, there is a higher chance that something could go wrong. In fact, modern cars have more computing power than the system that took the Apollo spaceship to the moon.
With so many computers, parts, and systems controlling your vehicle, it probably doesn’t surprise you that these technological advances might fail. Unfortunately, if your vehicle is only covered by a manufacturer’s warranty for three years, your warranty may expire by the time you really need it. Extended car warranties can help you keep your car covered in the case of a mechanical or technological failure. Based on what type of car you have and how much it costs to own over its lifetime, this can potentially save you a lot of money.
Besides protecting your vehicle after the factory warranty expires, extended car warranties provide benefits such as:
- Convenience: If you have an issue that’s covered by your service contract, you’ll know exactly who to call to get your vehicle back on the road. Most warranty providers even let you choose your own mechanic or auto repair shop. The best companies will pay your repair shop directly, meaning you won’t have to wait for reimbursement.
- Cost over time: While some vehicles cost less than others to repair, any car with recurring issues—or even just one costly repair— can quickly add up to a hefty repair bill. An extended car warranty alleviates these potential repair costs as your vehicle ages.
- Confidence: A car owner who spends time researching the best protection plan for their vehicle will be more confident in their car. By discussing coverage options with a top-rated third-party warranty company, you’ll feel you’ve done your due diligence when it comes to protecting your car. You can usually find a protection plan that offers just the right amount of coverage for your vehicle.
- Added perks: Many car warranty companies offer added benefits to their protection plans. Some of these benefits include roadside assistance or towing services. Depending on your plan, you may even receive a rental car while your vehicle is at the auto shop.
Should I Get an Extended Car Warranty?
Like we’ve said, there are many benefits to purchasing an extended warranty from a third-party provider. But you may be wondering if an extended warranty is right for you. We’ve compiled a few of the top reasons you might consider adding a protection plan to your vehicle.
If you are looking for peace of mind ... extended warranties offer some of the best peace of mind when it comes to being on the road. You’ll be reassured that if something goes wrong with your car, your extended warranty should be able to get it repaired. The convenience and additional benefits of services like roadside assistance or towing services can put your mind at ease when traveling. If something does go wrong, these added perks can provide instant help, so you’re not stranded on the road.
If you are planning to keep your car ... some cars are typically kept for long periods of time. A lot of these vehicles are family cars that get passed down to teenagers or between siblings. An extended warranty protects your car even as it gets older. There are a lot of coverage options for extended warranties. Right after your manufacturer warranty expires, you may want a protection plan that mimics a factory warranty. As the car gets older, you can save money by switching to a lower-coverage plan.
If you are planning to sell your car ... if you’re the type that keeps a car for a few years and then sells it, an extended warranty can help you sell an aging car. Many extended warranties can be transferred to a car’s new owner. This can prove to be a great selling point for potential buyers. Additionally, maintaining an extended warranty shows that you took care of the car when you owned it.
Hoping to avoid unwelcome surprises ... with an extended warranty, you will know how much your warranty coverage costs each month and will be more prepared for any unexpected repairs or other surprises. An extended car warranty can help you better plan for any unexpected repairs to your vehicle. Should a covered repair suddenly be needed, you’ll know that you won’t have to go scraping your savings to pay for your car’s repairs.
Frequently Asked Questions About Car Warranties
Take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions about car warranties and extended warranties.
Is a warranty the same as insurance?
No. Auto warranties and insurance companies cover different things. Car insurance is required by most states and pays for damages caused by collisions or other accidents, such as theft or fire. An extended warranty, on the other hand, usually provides coverage for mechanical issues or other breakdowns.
What does a car warranty cost?
A new car warranty is included in your car’s purchase price. Extended warranties are service contracts that are purchased separately. An extended warranty from a dealership could cost between $1,000 and $1,500. This purchase is often wrapped in your car financing, so you may end up paying interest on your extended warranty. Most third-party warranty companies offer several plans and payment options, so you can more easily select a plan that fits your budget.
How do warranties work for new vs. used cars?
A new car is usually covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. Your new car won’t need an extended warranty while it’s under the factory warranty.
Buying an extended warranty, however, when your car is still new can save you money in the long run. Extended warranty prices often take a vehicle’s age and mileage into account. A new car may get you a lower warranty price.
Alternatively, used cars are often sold “as is,” meaning there is no warranty included. Purchasing an extended warranty can provide coverage you wouldn’t have without a warranty. These vehicle service contracts typically cover used cars, including those with 100,000 miles or more.
Can you buy a car warranty at any time?
Manufacturer warranties are only available at the time of sale for new car purchases. An extended warranty can be purchased at any time.
CARCHEX Extended Car Warranty
As one of the top-rated third-party warranty companies by both Trustpilot and the BBB, CARCHEX offers a variety of benefits when searching for an extended car warranty. In business for almost 20 years, CARCHEX provides the reassurance of a long-standing warranty company.
Some reasons to consider CARCHEX for your extended car warranty include:
- Roadside assistance: CARCHEX protection plans include emergency roadside assistance, gas delivery, trip interruption services, and other benefits.
- Risk-free: A 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee means you can give CARCHEX a try and get a full refund if you’re not satisfied with the service within 30 days.
- Choose your favorite auto shop: You won’t be limited to a dealership or a certain repair shop with CARCHEX. You can go to your favorite mechanic for all of your extended warranty repairs.
- Claims paid to repair shops: Instead of having to deal with paying for your car’s repairs and then going through a lengthy claims process to get reimbursed, CARCHEX pays your repair shop directly.
- Customer service: With an A+ BBB rating and customer promises like “Customer Experience Above All,” their customers are pleased with their professional and knowledgeable representatives.
- Trusted throughout the industry: CARCHEX is endorsed by industry leaders, like AAA, Allstate, Kelley Blue Book, CARFAX, and Royal, and works with them to make sure you get a competitive price on your warranty.
CARCHEX Extended Vehicle Protection Plans
Extended car warranties from CARCHEX come in a variety of coverage levels with several protection plans to meet the needs of your car and your budget. Take a look at this plan breakdown:
- Up to 10 years of coverage
- Recommended for owners looking for the most protection available
- Bumper-to-bumper coverage
- Covers all components except a short list of exclusions
- Up to 10 years of coverage
- Recommended for long-term coverage of stated components
- Hundreds of specific components covered
- Up to 10 years of coverage
- Recommended for vehicles over 60,000 miles
- Comprehensive coverage with flexible terms
- Includes coverage of most major vehicle systems
- Up to 7 years of coverage
- Recommended for high-mileage vehicles
- Provides essential coverage for many major systems
- Up to 6 years of coverage
- Recommended for drivers looking for basic protection
- Protects you against the most common and expensive repairs
Get a Free CARCHEX Extended Warranty Quote
If you’re looking for flexible, affordable extended car warranty options, CARCHEX offers plenty of choices, so you can customize your warranty to your specific vehicle needs.
To speak to a CARCHEX auto warranty/insurance expert and get a free quote, call (877) 225-7247 or fill out the online form.
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