When your manufacturer's warranty expires, you are then faced with a choice. Either cross your fingers and hope that nothing goes wrong, or opt for an extended warranty. This can either be an extension of your current manufacturer's warranty taken out directly with the maker of your car, or you can shop around for the best deal from the full range of third party providers.
So, is it worth buying extended warranty on a new car?
Motorists can be understandably dubious about the cost of extending their cover, and often ask if the annual outlay on a warranty is more than the average cost of repairs for the most common problems. This is a hard question to answer directly as it really depends on your car, how you look after it, and how lucky you are.
An example of common repair costs compared to warranty outlay
A three-year extended warranty for a small car like a Ford Fiesta can be as little as £150, but cover would be pretty basic. For broader (and realistically, better) premium cover you might expect to pay as much as £500. If we set this against the average repair cost of £500 for a common problem like a gearbox repair, you might think, “well, it's the same cost, so why bother?”
However, this overlooks the fact that a good warranty may also include extras like breakdown cover, towing to a garage if needed and an allowance towards car hire. So, there are additional knock-on costs to you if your car breaks down and these should be factored in to the equation. In this instance, the overall outlay is definitely worth it even for the most costly level of cover.
Will a high-value car cost more to cover?
If you have a high-value car, you'll be aware that repair costs tend to be much higher - and yes, the cost of your warranty will be greater too. One of the benefits of an extended warranty is that your repairs will be carried out by certified engineers using branded parts, which is important both in terms of your motoring outcome, and also to ensure that your vehicle retains its value.
As my car gets older, will more potential problems be excluded from my cover?
Older cars are more liable to break down and, as parts inevitably wear out, certain items are likely to be excluded. The best warranty providers are upfront about what is and isn’t covered, so it's really important that you check these details carefully before signing up.
Shop around, read reviews, do your homework
As with all products, whether or not you should purchase a warranty is entirely dependent on your own personal needs and on the quality of the product you choose. The best warranties offer peace of mind, protect you against unexpected repair bills and can also come with reassuring added benefits. Another plus for many motorists is that whether you pay a lump sum or a monthly amount, your costs are regular, predictable and therefore easy to factor into your budgeting.
At Car.co.uk, our advice is that you undertake some detailed research, read plenty of customer reviews and ensure that you check the small print regarding excluded parts, caps on labour cost, and more complex industry terms like betterment and consequential damage. After doing this, you’ll be able to make an informed decision.