Written by: Guest | Best Company Editorial Team
Last Updated: February 24th, 2020
Guest Post by Mike Jones
Whether you’re buying a new car or purchasing a used vehicle that’s almost as good as new, you can’t help but worry about what repairs your vehicle may face down the road. Like death and taxes, we can’t seem to escape car problems or the costs that come with them. A broken AC or leaking water pump, a transmission issue or ignition problem — all come with costly repairs.
It’s best to prepare for these car issues well before they actually happen so that your vehicle and your wallet don’t pay the price. One of the best ways to prepare for the inevitable is by investing in an extended vehicle warranty.
Over the years extended vehicle warranties have been the target of myths and fiction that have made drivers ask the question: Is an extended vehicle warranty actually worth it?
The easy answer is yes. If you want peace of mind, an extended vehicle warranty is definitely worth it, whether you’re driving your first new car or your fifth used car. Don’t let the following myths fool you into putting your vehicle and your budget at risk.
1. Extended warranties are a waste of money
This is perhaps the biggest myth surrounding extended vehicle warranty plans. Many drivers forgo warranty plans because they worry that they’re too expensive. However, while you can find an extended vehicle warranty for as little as $1,119 (Platinum coverage, $0 deductible, in California, for a 2018 Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid), some major car repairs can cost you anywhere from $500 to $7,000. You’ll be spending a lot more money if you’re not covered by a warranty plan.
If you opt for an extended vehicle warranty, your plan will likely pay for itself after one large repair bill. This doesn’t include the added benefits a warranty offers. Extended vehicle warranties don’t only help cover your vehicle repairs, but some include roadside assistance for when your car breaks down, rental vehicle assistance for when your car is in the shop, and repair shop choice. Some providers also offer payment plans to help make payments easier for drivers.
Where does this myth come from? It comes from the fact that many dealerships overcharge for extended vehicle warranties. These plans come with loans and interest rates, making many drivers feel like they’re being played.
2. Only dealerships sell extended vehicle warranties
This is partly true. Only dealerships sell extended vehicle warranties. But you can find vehicle protection plans from a variety of providers across the nation.
A vehicle protection plan is a convenient and affordable alternative to an extended vehicle warranty. Despite the difference in its name, it offers many of the same benefits (sometimes with a few additional perks like no-fee payment plans).
While you can buy an extended vehicle warranty directly from your dealership, don’t limit your options. Explore other vehicle protection plan providers. How do their plans stack up against those of the dealership? Who offers the lowest prices? Who offers the greatest benefits? Be sure to check their reputation at the Better Business Bureau or Trustpilot.com.
3. All warranties are the same
No two car warranties are exactly the same. In fact, even dealerships or providers offer several different types of warranties. They differ in price, in coverage, in benefits, and in features.
The type of coverage you receive depends on several factors. First, it depends on how much you want to spend. If you’re willing to spend more on a warranty plan, you should also be expecting more coverage. The type of coverage you receive also depends on your state of residence and the year, make, model, and mileage of your vehicle. For example, the type of coverage available for a 2019 Lexus will differ greatly from that of a 2003 Ford.
It’s important that you shop around, just as you did when you purchased your car. Many providers offer free quotes and let you look at contract samples. Read the language in the contract carefully. When you do, the differences between the plans you’re looking at will be obvious. Remember to check online for reputation of the provider.
4. I’m already covered by my manufacturer’s warranty so I don’t need double coverage
While you may be covered by a manufacturer’s warranty shortly after you buy the car, you won’t be for long. The original factory warranty comes with year and mileage limits that leave you on your own once they’ve been exceeded.
It’s a good idea to invest in an extended vehicle warranty or vehicle protection plan before your manufacturer’s warranty expires. When you drive a newer car, you’ll be guaranteed a higher level of coverage, longer terms, and lower rates. The same can’t be said if you wait five years for protection. You and your car with more wear/tear and miles won’t get as good a deal had you not waited.
Now that you’ve uncovered the myths of an extended vehicle warranty, it’s time you look into the options and peace of mind that are available for you and your vehicle. No one wants a road trip interrupted by car problems or a vacation abandoned because a repair shop bill broke the bank.
One thing that’s not a myth? With a vehicle protection plan, you’ll drive with automotive peace of mind knowing that your car and your wallet are covered.
Mike Jones is the president and CEO of autopom!, a BBB Accredited A+ rated provider of vehicle protection plans for both new and used cars. Click here to learn more about autopom!