There are two types of warranties to consider when buying a car. One is the standard warranty. The most common standard warranty is the 36-month -36,000 miles one. This is for new cars and covers replacements and the cost of labor on any breakdown that occurs in this time period so long it is due to normal wear and tear and not excessive use, accidents or lack of maintenance. Tires and batteries are not included in this warranty.
A used car warranty is completely different. Many used cars are sold ‘as is’ which means there is no warranty. Some warranties only cover major parts such as drivetrain components. These are the engine, transmission or transaxle and rear end. This one is frequently a 3 month 3000 mile warranty. Many warranties are called ‘either, or’ warranties because they are based on, either 3 months OR 3000 miles, whichever comes first.
The other warranty is an extended warranty and many guides advise against them, saying they are not needed, so the buyer is wasting his money. But it depends on what is covered. If the extended warranty only covers the exact same thing as the standard warranty, then of course it is a useless addition. But if you get lots of extras for a reasonable price, it might be a good thing to have.
The most important thing is to know first is what the standard warranty does actually cover, then look at the extended warranty. You might be offered an extended warranty that covers almost everything on the car for something like $100 for five years. That would be a great bargain. But if it cost $1000 for the same few things that your standard warranty covers, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that you don’t need it.
One good idea is to think about buying an extended warranty online from a place like Warranty Direct. Because they’ve cut out the dealer profits, you’ll make a saving of up to 60% on an extended warranty. But still it’s only a good buy if you think you really need it. The best thing about Warranty Direct is that they have a roadside assistance program so if you breakdown way out in the wilds, you can get help. You can also get your car serviced anywhere in the United States. As with everything car-related, it’s a good idea to do your homework before you decide.