An extended auto warranty is a common add-on, either at your dealership or through a separate company. You may reasonably wonder whether such a warranty is necessary, especially if you’re getting a used car. The answer to this question depends on a variety of factors, including your vehicle’s age and condition as well as your financial situation and lifestyle. You should consider all these factors and shop around for the best deal before deciding whether getting an extended warranty on your used vehicle is right for you.
What is an Extended Warranty?
The first order of business is to discover what an extended auto warranty entails. Extended auto warranties are also called vehicle service contracts. They are meant to protect you when the standard warranty ends, since the older your car gets the more likely it is to break down or need costly repairs. What extended auto warranties cover greatly depends on the warranty itself, so you will have to carefully compare the coverage and prices to decide which extended warranty, if any, will be best for you. You can sometimes pay for extended warranties up front, but it’s far more common for them to be paid monthly.
Extended Warranties and Used Cars
Deciding whether or not to get an extended warranty on your used car depends on the condition of the car, your budget, and how long you intend on using the car. If your car is in good condition and you don’t intend to use it for a long period of time, you might prefer to pay for any issues out of pocket. But if you know that the car has aging parts, intend to keep it for a long period of time, or prefer to have more regular payments, an extended warranty might be the right move.
Pros and Cons of Extended Warranties
If you’re still unsure whether an extended warranty on your used car is the right move, here are some pros and cons.
One of the biggest pros of getting an extended warranty is obviously getting a certain amount of peace of mind. You won’t have to worry about paying for any car repairs out of pocket since you’ll be able to easily be able to keep enough money to cover your deductible. Many extended warranties come with additional perks, such as roadside assistance and rental car coverage. Having an extended warranty, therefore, means that you will be able to keep your used car for a longer period of time since you won’t see the repair bills pile up in the same way.
There are some significant cons, however. The amount and type of damage they cover can vary wildly, and better coverage can come with hefty price tags. You also might regret getting an extended warranty if you don’t use it since a monthly bill can add up to far more than one or two-car repairs. If you have enough savings, you might consider not getting an extended warranty. Another reason not to get an extended warranty is if you aren’t intending on keeping your used car long term since there’s a better chance that you won’t need the warranty at all.
What to Look For in an Extended Warranty
There are many types of extended warranties, but there are a few indicators that can signal that a warranty is good for your used car. First off, you will want to learn whether the company you’re getting the insurance from has good customer service. Used cars might require a lot of repairs, so you’ll want an insurance company that will listen to and accommodates you. Secondly, you should find customizable or comprehensive extended warranty plans. Comprehensive plans will cover a variety of issues, a must when it comes to used cars, but they can also be expensive and have hidden loopholes that will prevent you from getting a payout. Customizable plans will allow you to focus on possible problem areas, so they might be better if you get a used car that, for instance, has an excellent engine but shoddy breaks.