Top Companies for Extended Warranties for Cars Over 100k Miles

If your car's original warranty has expired, here's what you need to know about extending your protection with a third-party company.

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Today’s cars last much longer than your grandfather’s first—or even third—car. In fact, the average age of a car in 2016 was nearly 12 years old, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. That’s four to five years older than the average car in the 1990s.

You’re likely to put well over 100,000 miles on your car, and many manufacturer warranties tend to expire at the 100k mile mark. An extended warranty for cars over 100k miles, however, can give you continued coverage and peace of mind for the most expensive auto repairs. 

Below, we break down reputable options for buying an extended warranty on an older car, including CARCHEX. To get a free CARCHEX quote from one of their representatives, call (877) 225-7247 or visit the CARCHEX website.

Is an Extended Auto Warranty Worth It?

It certainly can be. An extended warranty is a service contract rather than a legal warranty, so it will always cost extra, because it isn’t included with your car’s purchase. It’s best to get an extended warranty if the price is the same or less than the cost of expected repairs.

It also depends on your lifestyle and vehicle. Consider getting an extended warranty if these points pertain to you: 

  • Long commutes or frequent travel push you past your factory warranty quickly.
  • Your car’s manufacturer warranty only lasts three to five years.
  • Your vehicle’s model has known patterns for specific problems, especially with high mileage.
  • You have an older vehicle that will most likely need major, costly repairs.
  • Extended warranties are a great option for used cars purchased privately.
  • You find comfort in the idea of a service that takes care of all aspects of repairs for you, including towing and roadside assistance. 

If your vehicle is highly reliable or requires exclusionary repairs, such as bad tires, ripped seats, brake pads, and general wear and tear, then an extended warranty might not be the most cost-effective option. Always make sure to read the provider’s contract for full coverage details.

What Should Your Extended Car Warranty Include?

Don’t choose an extended warranty that skimps on repairs and dodges on its promises. If your engine is kaput and the service contract only covers repairs on the most meaningless interior engine parts, then you’re in for a headache. Coverage is key, and there are two main types.

Powertrain

A powertrain warranty covers only the most important components of the car, which makes it a cheaper and longer contract. With powertrain coverage, you’ll get protection for certain parts of these components:

  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Rear axle
  • Front axle
  • Driveshaft

We can’t guarantee that every part of your car’s engine or driveshaft will be covered, but many warranty services can have very extensive coverage under more expensive plans.

Bumper to Bumper

Are you worried that any sort of breakdown can happen? If your old car is giving you breakdown anxiety, then a bumper-to-bumper warranty is the best type of extended warranty for cars over 100k miles. While it won’t cover every single part of the car, it can cover other important components of your braking system, like electronic systems and lighting, suspension, air conditioning, and steering. Of course, this type of coverage will come at a higher price.

Some extended auto warranties will have an added bonus of flexibility for covered auto repair shops, as well as additional reimbursement for rental car service or towing. It’s always a good idea to ask about these features.

Can Your Car Go the Distance?

We can’t all be owners of the ultra-reliable Tesla Model S P85, which recently hit 420,000 miles. Certain cars are more reliable than others, especially after 100,000 miles. So, which cars will likely need the help of an extended warranty, and which cars can survive without?

The Longest Lasting Vehicles

Make: Mazda

Durability: The Mazda has been rated amongst 10 manufacturers and 100 models as the cheapest car to fix when the check engine light switches on. At only $285.70 for an average repair, and an even cheaper $81 repair for the 2013 Miata model, the Mazda is the most reliable and affordable car to keep after the factory warranty expires.

Model: Honda Civic

Durability: According to Paul LeBlanc, co-owner of Paul’s Auto Repair in East Hartford, CT, the Honda Civic is reliable and low-maintenance. “I don't think they're insulated very well from the world around them, but you can't ask for much more from a small, inexpensive sedan. I haven't done anything but the regular brake and tire services on these, and constantly give even high mileage ones a clean bill of health,” he says.

You can check out more long-lasting cars rated by an iSeeCars.com study here.

The Least Durable Vehicles

Model: BMW 3-Series 

Durability: Michael Hogarty, owner of Hot Rods 2 Hybrids in Sterling, VA, believes the BMW 3-Series isn’t for the DIY car owner. He states, “The 3-liter inline-6 engines have a great flat torque curve, but when you get them slightly out of heat range, like, 'Oh hey, I forgot to top off my coolant,' you lose an engine in a BMW. Not only that, but they have electric water pumps that have been known to fail slightly out of warranty. That's $1,500 if you don't kill the engine when it fails.” Perhaps a BMW could use an extended warranty to cover the price. 

Model: Buick Enclave 

Durability: The Buick Enclave, as well as the similar GMC Acadia, have reported transmission defects of up to 20 percent. Owners of this particular model can pay up to $5,000 out-of-pocket for these costly repairs. However, a powertrain extended warranty or a more comprehensive coverage plan can relieve you from much of the cost. 

Our Advice

The more reliable the vehicle, the more money you will lose by paying for an expensive extended warranty that gets little use. If your vehicle’s repairs will likely be equal to or more expensive than the warranty’s annual payout, then you will get more bang for your buck on a service contract.

Who Are the Most Reputable Extended Car Warranty Companies?

There are over a dozen extended car warranty companies, but we picked five of the top providers for cars with more than 100,000 miles based on two things: coverage plans and customer satisfaction.

Coverage Plans: Most extended auto warranty company offer multiple plans, from simple powertrain warranties to full coverage that is similar to your car’s factory warranty. We picked plans best suited for high-mileage vehicles. 

CARCHEX and Endurance specifically advertise plans meant for vehicles with greater than 90,000 miles, though CARCHEX has many available plans at competitive prices compared to just four plans from Endurance. Delta Auto Protect offers only three warranty plans.

Customer Satisfaction: Customer service can be just as important as warranty coverage. You want a contract with an extended warranty company that is transparent, responsive, and trustworthy.

CARCHEX and Autopom! have both received perfect scores from the Better Business Bureau. CARCHEX also won the Golden Bridge award for best customer service for three years in a row.

1. CARCHEX

Best Plan for High-Mileage Vehicles: Gold Coverage

  • Maximum of 10-year coverage
  • Engine
  • Transmission 
  • Drive axle
  • Fuel delivery
  • Electrical
  • A/C
  • Braking
  • Steering 

BBB Rating: A+ 

2. AA Auto Protection

Best Plan for High-Mileage Vehicles: Stated Component Coverage

  • Length of maximum coverage varies
  • Gas/diesel engine
  • Transmission
  • Drive axle
  • Steering
  • Electrical
  • Brakes
  • Suspension
  • Fuel Delivery
  • Heating
  • Cooling

BBB Rating: A-

3. Endurance

Best Plan for High-Mileage Vehicles: Select Premiere

  • Maximum length coverage varies
  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Transfer case
  • Drive axle
  • Air conditioning
  • Heating
  • Cooling
  • Electrical
  • Seals and gaskets

BBB Rating: B+

4. Delta Auto Protect

Best Plan for High-Mileage Vehicles: Diamond

  • Maximum of 8-year coverage
  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Drive axle
  • Brake system
  • Electrical
  • Cooling system

BBB Rating: Not rated

5. Autopom!

Best Plan for High-Mileage Vehicles: Mid-Level Coverage

  • Maximum of 7-year coverage
  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Differential assembly
  • Drive axle 
  • Additional steering, suspension, heating, cooling, braking, and fuel delivery systems

 BBB Rating: A+

BBB data accurate as of March 2019.

Does AAA Offer Extended Auto Warranties?

You may already enjoy roadside assistance from AAA, but can it cover high repair costs on an older car? Not all companies offer extended warranty services in every state. AAA is a clear example.

AAA Northeast and AAA Mid Atlantic provide extended warranties and vehicle protection plans, but you may not be able to find this service in other regions of the country. Check with your local AAA site.

CARCHEX Extended Warranties for High-Mileage Cars

CARCHEX is a reliable choice for an extended warranty. With bumper-to-bumper coverage, transferrable plans, and affordable payments, the company also boasts a good reputation within the industry. 

CARCHEX Stats

CARCHEX Benefits for Cars Over 100k Miles

In addition to component coverage, you’ll also receive many additional perks. 

  • Roadside Assistance—Older cars are more likely to break down. In the event that you’re stuck, you’ll get immediate assistance at any time of day for free with your coverage plan.
  • Car Rental—Get reimbursed (with a dollar limit) for a car rental while your vehicle is being repaired.
  • Trip Interruption Service—If you rack up miles in travel, you can receive reimbursements of up to $300 for accommodation and food if your vehicle breaks down more than 100 miles from your home.
  • Tow Service—Receive up to $100 for your old or used car to be towed to the nearest repair facility.
  • Battery Jump Service—An old battery can be provided a boost or jump start.
  • Network Flexibility—CARCHEX has a network of over 30,000 mechanics that you can choose from for your repair, so you have a say in the quality of service and your car’s longevity.

What Is the Cost of an Extended Auto Warranty?

The typical extended car warranty cost is more than $1,000 on average. However, small down payments and easy monthly payment plans can make repairs much more affordable than an out-of-pocket engine rebuild. After all, it is usually less expensive to repair an older car than it is to buy a new one

Going with a third-party service that provides many coverage plans, you can expect a cheaper price tag. CARCHEX also offers payment plans from six months to 24 months, deductible plans, and options with a zero-dollar deductible.

Find the Right Price with a CARCHEX Representative

If you drive an old car or you accrue miles quickly, you have the option to protect your car and wallet in the event of a breakdown. Speak to a CARCHEX representative about an extended warranty for cars over 100k miles and get a free quote when you call (877) 225-7247 or visit the CARCHEX website.