Let’s talk a little bit about warranties. Everything from your factory warranty to extended warranties. New cars, used cars, and just about any car these days has some form of warranty! Like I said in my earlier article, most new car makers have really extended their factory warranty on new vehicles for a long time.
Take GM for instance, any new vehicle they sell has a 5 year or 100,000 mile powertrain warranty. This means you have pretty terrific coverage of all the drivetrain components for an above average time. Quite a few people don’t even keep cars that long anymore, so their warranty will never run out basically.
You always want to ask your dealership, or better yet, read your owner’s manual to get the specifics of any warranty you have from the factory. There will be all the details you need in that and your paperwork from the dealership. Don’t ever throw that stuff away! Record keeping is very necessary for your automobile. And as always, the service department is there to help you and answer your questions if you have them.
One thing I always try to tell my customers about extended warranties is to NEVER purchase one when you are buying a new vehicle. At least not at the point of sale. Get the info on the factory warranty and when it runs out, etc. You can always purchase an extended warranty at any time after that, and that is what I recommend. The thing is, if you purchase an extended warranty at the same time you’re buying a new car, it basically takes effect immediately. You’re wasting the years and mileage that the factory is already covering for you. Let’s say you buy an extended warranty that has 5 years or 60,000 miles of coverage at the time you purchase your new vehicle. It starts to cover you that day, as does the factory warranty. If the factory warranty is 5 years 100,000 miles, you will effectively NEVER get to use that extended warranty and will have wasted that money. If you wait until the factory warranty runs out, and then purchase an extended warranty, you will get full use of it. That’s the way it should be done.
Now for used cars, I recommend getting an extended warranty right off the bat. Even for a car in very good shape, I highly suggest a warranty. You really never know what can go wrong with your used car or truck. Like stated before, let’s say you paid $1,200 for the warranty and you end up needing a $3,000 transmission down the road. You just got well more than your money’s worth out of that warranty! Another piece of advice I always give, is to bring the car in for a check out before the warranty expires just to correct anything that might be going wrong or is wrong with the vehicle. Usually a technician can find something that is wearing out or broken that you can still get fixed before the warranty expires. Just some FYI!
So, in short, take advantage of the warranties provided to you by the factory and extended warranty companies. Just know how and when to buy, use, and hold on to them!