What to Know - Researching a Car Warranty
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What to Know – Researching a Car Warranty

What to Know – Researching a Car Warranty

There are many car warranties available, but which ones are right for you? Does bumper-to-bumper mean everything between the bumpers? What exactly is included in the power train warranty? If you have asked yourself these questions about a car warranty, you’re not alone.

Bumper-to-Bumper New Car Warranties

The most basic new car warranty is the 3/36 bumper-to-bumper warranty. This means that if anything goes wrong with the car during the first three years or 36,000 miles of ownership, the manufacturer will pay for parts and repairs, excluding wear items such as wipers, brake pads, light bulbs, filters, etc.

Luxury Car Warranties: You Get What You Pay For

Manufacturers of premium vehicles go a step further, offering warranty coverage for longer periods in addition to roadside assistance and other perks.

Infiniti, for example, provides bumper-to-bumper coverage and free roadside assistance for four years or 60,000 miles, and they will give you a loaner Infiniti if warranty work is required. BMW customers have the bonus of free scheduled maintenance during the warranty period.

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Value Leaders in Car Warranties

Three vehicle manufacturers stand out as value leaders when it comes to their new car warranties. Mazda and Volkswagen offer bumper-to-bumper coverage for their vehicles for four years or 50,000 miles, in addition to free roadside assistance for the duration of the warranty period.

Hyundai wins top honors with a five-year/60,000-mile bumper-to-bumper new car warranty, as well as unlimited roadside assistance for five years, regardless of mileage.

Power train Warranties

The power train refers to all the moving parts that make your car run: the engine, transmission, etc. Many car warranties offer power train coverage beyond the basic bumper-to-bumper coverage.

Lexus and Infiniti warranties cover the power train for six years or 70,000 miles, and they are completely transferable. On the other hand, Hyundai’s much-touted 10 years/100,000 power train warranty applies only to the vehicle’s original owner.

What About Extended Car Warranties?

Car Warranties come with nearly every new car sold in the United States. But did you know you can also purchase a used car warranty? Several national warranty companies offer used car warranties that can be added to just about any car you buy.

You don’t even have to buy the warranty at the time you buy the car. You can even add an extended warranty to your existing vehicle.

Additional Car Warranties

The federal government requires that certain components designed to reduce emissions be covered by new car warranties for eight years or 80,000 miles.

Many vehicle manufacturers provide extended warranties covering seat belt replacement and protecting the body panels against rust.

For example, Infiniti’s new car warranty covers seat belts for 10 years and protects body panels against corrosion perforation for seven years, with no mileage limitation.

Problems After the Warranty Period

Let’s say your beautiful Lexus LS430 just turned 70,001 miles and the transmission goes out. You’re out of luck, since the power train coverage ended at 70,000 miles, right? Not necessarily.

Though Lexus has no legal or contractual obligation to help you with your problem, they may still fix your transmission for free. Most manufacturers have “goodwill service” policies in place to keep loyal customers happy and to sustain the company’s image.

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