Purchasing a car is a big deal that involves handing over a sizable amount of cash and signing many papers. While you’re at it, you may also be asked to purchase a warranty for your new ride, which isn’t always the right move for every car shopper. Whether or not an extended warranty is worth it depends on your risk tolerance, financial situation and the vehicle’s reliability. We’ve got a few tips that can help you decide if this type of coverage is right for you.
Whether you buy a used car off a lot or a new one from the manufacturer, it’s going to eventually have its original manufacturer warranty expire. Some extended warranties cover repairs after the bumper-to-bumper and powertrain warranties have expired, while others extend coverage to a specified number of miles or years. Some even include roadside assistance. These plans might be an option for you if you want to protect yourself from large repair bills and don’t have the extra money saved to pay for these expenses out of pocket.
On the other hand, if you plan to drive your new car into the ground and will likely be buying another vehicle long before its factory warranty runs out, an extended warranty isn’t a smart move for you. It’s usually better to spend your money on a reliable car with a good predicted reliability score (check out the ratings and reviews in our New Car Buyer’s Guide) and keep it up with regular maintenance, which will prevent most problems from occurring in the first place.
Before you buy an extended warranty, make sure to read all of the fine print and compare multiple offers. Almost all extended warranty providers offer the same basic product, but there are differences in terms of price, options and customer service. Some even provide a free quote as part of their sales process, which is a great way to weigh the pros and cons without being pressured to buy.
If you do choose to buy an extended warranty, look for a provider with a reputation for excellent customer service and transparency. Also, be aware that some companies will call you to sell you additional coverage once you’ve purchased a plan. These telemarketers can be a major nuisance, so avoid them by requesting quotes online with multiple companies before making your decision.
If you’re ready to see what extended warranty prices are available for your vehicle, request quotes from several companies that specialize in these products. This way, you’ll have plenty of choices and be able to find the best deal. Just be prepared for some sales calls, as most companies will call to pitch their products. But remember, you can opt out of these offers at any time if they’re not the right fit for you. It’s worth it to take the extra time to find a plan that’s worth the money. should i buy extended warranty on used car