It’s important to check over the condition of a used car before you part with any money. If you have saved hard to buy the vehicle or you will struggle with aspects of your daily life should the car be off the road, you need to consider a warranty.
A used car warranty will provide protection against faults developing in certain parts. With protection in place, if something goes wrong, you’ll be able to make a claim and have the vehicle repaired.
However, should you decide not to pay for a warranty, you will benefit from statutory protection for the first three months after you buy the car. The level of protection you get will be limited when compared to what you get by buying a warranty. Before you make any decision on whether to take out the cover, you should establish what is covered in a three-month car warranty.
The answer is that the level of cover will be limited if you rely on the protection provided automatically by the dealership.
If you choose to pay, the cover will be the same, regardless of whether you arrange it over three months or three years. That means you’ll be protected for any faults that develop with major parts, and many of the other components. However, it generally doesn’t include straightforward wear and tear.
Don’t confuse statutory rights with extended warranty. By law, the dealer must sell you a vehicle that is roadworthy and as advertised. The car will come with three months cover and will be free of charge. It covers a limited number of faults, mainly to do with major components. It will not cover wear and tear and will also exclude most parts. If anything goes wrong with it, you should be able to get your money back. If the dealer refuses to comply, you can take them to court.
A used car warranty sold by the dealer will provide more in-depth protection. However, all warranties are not the same, so it’s worth looking closely at what’s covered before you buy one. The type of policy offered by a dealer may be limited in the scope of what it covers, and it could be the case that it will be worth your while shopping around.
The only way to be sure of what’s included and what’s not covered by the warranty is to read the small print carefully. Only when you have compared costs and levels of protection can you make a decision as to what is the better deal.
If you bought the car from a private seller, you will not have the three-month protection, although the seller is breaking the law if it is not as described. This is the riskiest way to buy a car.
Alternatives to free cover
If you buy a used car from a dealership, you will be able to arrange a used car warranty. This will provide a more extensive level of protection and will cover a much wider range of faults. Buying it from the dealership can be more expensive than some of the alternatives, so it’s worth shopping around to see if you can get a better deal elsewhere.
You can do this by getting quotes from an insurance company or a broker, who will have access to various options. You can also do the work yourself by using a comparison website. Armed with quotes, you will be able to weigh up the different levels of cover and ensure that the premium falls within your budget.
Price isn’t everything, so it’s important to make sure you check what’s covered.