What should you consider when agreeing a warranty?

If you’ve just upgraded your car, (or are thinking of doing so), then you may be thinking about getting an extended warranty. A good warranty can be an extremely valuable part of a deal on a used car - but it's important to know what you're getting and whether it's worth it.

It's natural to want to protect your investment in a new car by getting a warranty to cover any faults that develop within the first year or two. But not all warranties are the same.

Cover and cost can vary greatly. It means that one warranty may represent part of a great overall deal on a car, but another could see you paying for something you don't need.

Like insurance, it's a balancing act to find between cover and cost, and just as you would with insurance it's best to shop around so you can judge the best deal.

This guide shows you how to evaluate a warranty and what to look out for, so you can make the right decision.

What is covered under a car warranty?

Warranties on used cars can vary greatly with what they cover. However you will find that most of them cover all or most of the following:

● Engine

● Transmission system

● Fuel and ignition systems

● Cooling system

● Electrics

● Gearbox

● Steering

● Suspension

● Non-frictional clutch

● Brake system parts

Before you commit to any warranty however, you should check the specific terms and conditions of the policy to see what is covered and what is not. Fail to do this and you could come to regret it later if your car ends up needing a repair that you are not covered for.

What’s excluded from a car warranty?

What is excluded from a car warranty is down to the terms and conditions of the policy that you sign up for, some policies may have more or less parts covered than others. However, what most extended warranties do have in common is that wear and tear parts are almost always never covered. That means you’ll find that you won’t generally be covered for parts such as:

● Clutch

● Brake pads

● Exhaust

● Tyres

● Catalytic converter

● Bodywork

● Paintwork

● Glass

● Headlights

There is something called consequential damage to consider too. This is when a part fails and that failure causes damage to another part of the car. Under many policies, this type of damage is not covered. Once again, it is crucial that you read through and understand the full terms and conditions of any policy that you are thinking of taking out.

How much do they cost?

As you may expect, the cost of warranties varies. As well as depending upon where you get your warranty from (third party provider or manufacturer for example), other factors may be taken into account too. This could include the age of the car, the manufacturer and the model, as well as mileage and service history.

How long do they last?

Extended warranties generally last for 12 months from most manufacturers and third party warranty providers. However, there are sometimes exceptions to this so if you would like a warranty over a different period of time it is worth shopping around.

Where do I buy a warranty?

There are two types of warranty generally available and depending upon the type you go for depends upon where you purchase it.

Firstly there are the extended warranties offered by manufacturers. These you may choose to sign up for direct (online, over the phone etc) or in some instances you can do it through your local franchised dealer.

The other option is the third party extended warranty. There are lots of companies that offer third party warranties on the internet, simply do a search for extended car warranties. This is generally your only choice if you have bought your car privately.

Is it worth getting a car warranty?

There really is no straightforward answer as to whether it is worth getting a warranty for your car, it really all depends upon your personal circumstances and your attitude to risk. If you have the money in the bank to deal with any unexpected costly repairs you may think that purchasing an extended warranty is a waste of time. However, if you are on a budget, you may think that paying out a fixed yearly amount to cover yourself for any larger repairs makes financial sense, especially as some modern cars can be very expensive to repair.

Advantages include:

● You can budget your car expenses more easily

● The total cost of a warranty could be far less that you would pay for a major repair

● Wide choice of options enabling you to get a good deal.

Disadvantages include:

● If your car never needs a repair, you could see it as wasted money

● All policies are limited, therefore you are not covered for everything that could go wrong

● You may be limited to using certain repair providers that may not be your most local

If you’re undecided, the best option is to go and get some quotes for extended warranties from your car’s manufacturer and third party providers. Once you have some prices in front of you and have read in detail about what is covered and what is not, you may find the decision easier to make.

Want to know all the costs to consider before buying a car?

Read about car affordability here https://www.zuto.com/blog/what-costs-do-you-need-consider-when-buying-a-car/

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