When a new vehicle is sold, the manufacturer of that vehicle includes a guarantee that the vehicle will be problem free, and if it is not, then the buyer is protected by a warranty. The warranty is included in the price of the vehicle just as if it were a part of the vehicle itself. These warranties usually cover all parts of the vehicle other than normal wear and tear items such as wiper blades, brake pads, etc. This is what many people refer to as a Bumper to Bumper Warranty.

These warranties are for a specific period of time from when the vehicle is first purchased and up to a certain mileage limit- for example a common warranty is 3 years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first. After the buyer reaches either of those milestones, their manufacturer warranty would no longer be in effect, leaving the owner vulnerable in the event of a mechanical breakdown or failure.

What Are The Differences between Extended Warranties, Vehicle Service Contracts, and Mechanical Breakdown Insurance?

Most manufacturers have begun offering warranties on select used vehicles known as Certified. These vehicles have passed a manufacturer defined inspection process and undergone specific refurbishing requirements needed to meet the Certified standards and become eligible for coverage. It is important to note that there is a significant difference between manufacturer certified and simply one certified by a selling dealer, with only the manufactured one backed by an actual Certified warranty.

Extended Warranties, Vehicle Service Contracts and Mechanical Breakdown Insurance are all very similar. All are designed to provide the vehicle owner with protection in the event that their car has mechanical problems or failure. While there are some technical differences in the type of insurance regulations they must conform to, these differences are usually very subtle and should not impact a consumer at all.

Different states have different insurance regulations that determine the type of policy that can be sold in each jurisdiction. In order to meet the product eligibility requirements, each product is structured somewhat differently to be eligible for distribution to consumers in that state. These regulations are designed to protect consumers and ensure that the product being sold is stable and secure and has the financial strength and security to pay out future claims that might arise in the future.

However, it still is important for a consumer thinking of purchasing any additional mechanical protection to be certain that the product they are getting meets their needs and is highly rated by the insurance and financial rating agencies. Any reputable product or company selling one of these, whether its an Extended Warranty, Vehicle Service Contract, or Mechanical Breakdown Insurance should be able to provide proof of their standing and strength.

Routine Maintenance Important & Your Warranty How They Go Together

All vehicle warranties or extended service contracts call for the vehicle owner to perform the maintenance that the manufacturer requires. These type of services are usually such normal things as scheduled oil changes, tune-ups, tire rotations, and major services every 30,000 miles. Each manufacturer has their own specific requirements based upon the specific vehicle; some require more service, while other require far less.

Proper maintenance ensures that your vehicle operates as expected, and helps minimize breakdowns and other mechanical problems. Today’s vehicles are increasingly complex and engineered to higher thresholds than ever before, and as such regular upkeep is critical. The manufacturer’s guidelines are designed to ensure that the vehicle performs as designed.

If these normal maintenance services are not completed, the warranty may be voided and repair claims might not be paid. It’s therefore important to keep records of all services to guarantee that if a problem does surface in the future that proof of following the maintenance guidelines can be proven easily, and appropriate claims can get paid and repaired quickly and without question or problem.

The required maintenance can generally be completed at either the dealer or an aftermarket repair facility. If you choose a repair facility other than the dealership, it’s vitally important to be certain that they exactly follow the manufacturer detailed maintenance plans. Skipping or overlooking one of the requirements can affect the vehicle’s health and possibly void the warranty.