Is an Extended Car Warranty Really Worth it?

When it comes to looking at buying and paying for things for your car, you’re inundated with expenses. Tax, insurance, fuel, MOTs, servicing, the car itself… The list grows faster than you think. Because of that, one of the first things that go out of the window for a lot of people that are still on the fence about advancing their security is extended warranties, usually followed by asking the question, are they really worth it? 

Extended warranties aren’t exactly the cheapest addition you can add to your vehicles armoury. As a company based on transparency, we’re the first to admit, they aren’t a small purchase, especially when looking at lower value vehicles. What they do have to offer through can still more than justify their existence. They’re not hard to argue for if you know your stuff. 

Here, we’re looking at just a few of the most important reasons extended car warranties could be worth your time and money, but we’re also looking at why they aren’t for everyone, too. There’s no one size fits all, after all. 

The Numbers Regarding Extended Warranties 

Before this all comes down to looking at the various advantages and disadvantages of how extended car warranties can be worth the extra expense, let’s take a look at the national aftermarket vehicle repair statists that are accessible to the public. 

The average annual spend on car work/repairs in the UK every single year (in 2016, as is the most up to date information) is a staggering £706 approximately. That comes from a combination of parts, labour and accessories, and it’s a huge number, especially with used cars that aren’t covered by standard manufacturer warranties (which still don’t cover everything you could get). 

Now, let’s look at warranty numbers. Extended car warranties come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, so prices are hard to pinpoint. To help give some clarity to the situation and help you understand their value, however, we’re able to use our own service as an example.  

With two levels of cover available each having options for different periods of time and different expenses, here’s how the costs play pan out: 

Essential Package 

Comprehensive Package 

The Extra Cover They Provide 

The next significant points of value that extended car warranties have to argue their worth come from the extra cover that they have to offer in the first place. You already have things like consumer rights on your side after all, so how much cover is really necessary? 

Extended warranties do however have their own unique benefits. For example, they take coverage to new levels and usually, you’re able to customise just what that is too. Most extended warranties for example cover the main components like engine parts and breakdowns, but comprehensive packages take that even further. 

With more advanced and typically pricier packages, the level of cover you have is dramatically increased. That comes from things like battery health, more intricate parts and more convenient options to receive these services on top of this. 

That also begins to include different excess coverage to prevent or minimise your involvement, protection even against private sellers where your consumer rights are significantly diminished, and with the coverage requirements which we’ll come onto below. 

The Indirect Protection 

Even on top of all of the other coverage mentioned and the benefits that this brings to the table, one massive aspect of the entire extended car warranty protection comes from the indirect financial benefits as well. 

The vast majority of consumers are quick to think about the money that the extended warranty could save them from spending if the car needs to be repaired, but that is actually a double-edged sword that is worth more than it seems. 

The main cause of that is the protection given to your car insurance, too. Most people are aware of the value of the no claims bonus and the importance of a clean driving record against future insurance coverage. 

As a result of that importance, it only makes sense that extended warranties are also seen as another arm that protects that all-important record. If something is to ever go wrong with your vehicle, whether it is covered by your insurance or not, you are covered. That means your insurance isn’t the one shelling out the cost, and you don’t have to worry about skyrocketing premiums next year. It’s another win that pays for itself almost immediately. 

Potential Issues With Extended Warranties 

In the spirit of transparency, there are still a few things that can make an extended warranty practically worthless when it comes to trying to use it should you ever need to after purchase. These don’t apply to CarExamer or the packages we have to offer, but they aren’t uncommon to see or hear about the industry, so it’s always better to be aware. 

Things like coverage limitations for example, such as having an annual mileage cap as a part of the terms and conditions can be a huge issue for many packages. If you’re unable to use the car to your purposes, then the extended warranty is practically worthless. 

On the same score, we also have eligibility issues and poor terms too. Things like being responsible for the costs of labour no matter what for example, or still taking responsibility for a certain percentage of repairs. 

Always read the small print when it comes to extended warranties, as this is what often causes their issues in the first place. Read our article on what warranties do and don’t cover, here. 

Conclusion 

Ultimately, extended car warranties absolutely do have the potential to be a worthwhile investment, and are a great thing to consider when you’re buying a car. The biggest benefits come from the money they save you in every sense should anything go wrong, but not all extended warranties are created equally. 

Always do your homework when learning about what each warranty has to offer your unique needs, and always take the time to learn what the warranty you’re looking into does and does not cover. It could make a huge difference in the outcome of any issues. 

We hope you never need to use it, but for more information on our extended warranty service, contact us today. 

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