Buying an extended warranty to cover repairs on your new vehicle may provide peace of mind—but do you really need it? If you own a vehicle that consistently rates highly for reliability, you may not find much value in an extended warranty. According to Kiplinger.com, extended warranty payouts normally fall short of the cost of the warranty, and most extended warranty purchasers never use their policies.
Yet many people like the peace of mind that an extended warranty offers. If this sounds like you and if you know you’ll be driving your car long after the factory warranty expires, an extended warranty might be a good investment. And, since all cars tend to become less reliable over time, an extended warranty may be worth considering. If you feel an extended warranty is right for you and decide to purchase one, Consumer Reports offers these buying tips:
- Don’t cave to pressure. Here is what the dealer may not tell you: you can always purchase an extended warranty after buying a new car. Dealers often suggest rolling coverage into a new-car loan. While it means less money out of pocket, you’ll be paying for coverage that you already have with the factory warranty.
- Negotiate. Negotiate. Negotiate. Chances are, you’ll get a better price. According to a Consumer Reports survey, most people don’t negotiate on an extended warranty, but those who do are usually successful at securing a lower price.
- Talk to your auto club or insurance provider. Dealerships aren’t the only place to purchase an extended warranty. You may find a better deal through your auto club or your insurance company, both of which might also offer roadside assistance plans. If you do go through a third party for your extended warranty, be sure to read the fine print so you understand what is covered. Third-party warranties may have restrictions on where you can bring your car for service.
If you're determined to buy an extended warranty, do it soon after you purchase the car, ask a lot of questions and get multilple price quotes.