Extended warranties are a smart way to protect yourself against the costs of car repair and maintenance.
When you’re covered by a warranty, you can enjoy stress-free driving knowing you won’t have to deal with either the headache of getting stranded if your car breaks down, or the financial impact of an unexpected costly repair.
Extended warranties are not the same as insurance policies, but the concept is the same: invest a little now to save in the long run and reduce your lifetime costs of owning the vehicle.
Why a High-Mileage Car Needs an Extended Warranty
Any vehicle with 100,000 miles or more on the odometer is usually classed as high mileage. Of course, that doesn’t mean your vehicle is automatically on its last legs. The long-term durability of your car will depend on the vehicle and fuel type—plus some manufacturers and models have a better track record of reliability at higher mileage. All these are factors to take into account, but the truth remains the same: the chances of encountering problems increase with each mile you add.
As manufacturer warranties typically last 36,000 miles / 3 years (for bumper-to-bumper warranties) and 60,000 miles / 5 years (for powertrain warranties), when it comes to high-mileage vehicles, even if they’re not that old, these protection plans will no longer be valid.
The more the parts of your car are used and the more they’re exposed to the elements as well as the natural wear and tear of use, the more likely they’ll need to be replaced to comply with regulations—or even fail completely.
This means you can chance it and hope to avoid the costliest repairs, or you can invest in an extended warranty, which can extend your vehicle’s lifetime.
But can you get an extended warranty for a high-mileage car? Do warranty providers still cover them, or do they only offer very low levels of coverage?
Find out more about the various ways you can protect your vehicle, or read on to find out what to look for with extended warranty protection for high-mileage vehicles.
What to Bear in Mind When Looking for an Extended Warranty for High-Mileage Cars
According to AAA statistics, on average you can expect to spend $1,186 per year on repairs and maintenance—and that’s just for a new car.
Extended warranty providers offer different levels of coverage for used and high-mileage cars, which makes it crucial you check a few before committing. We’ve tested out the top providers and you can head over to our reviews here.
Generally speaking, most extended warranties for higher mileage vehicles will cover:
- Fuel system
- Electrical parts
- In-car audio entertainment
Some extended warranty companies cover more parts and offer extra benefits, such as Endurance, who rate top in our reviews and offer 24/7 roadside assistance and breakdown recovery, a replacement vehicle and trip interruption costs as standard.
If your vehicle is well over 100k miles and you’re planning on clocking up many more, you’ll also want to check what mileage warranty companies will provide coverage up to. Protect My Car will cover vehicles up to 300,000 miles, for example, while Endurance provides excellent coverage for vehicles up to 200,000+ miles and also throws in up to two free tire repairs/replacements a year along with a number of other perks.
When choosing your plan, you need to balance the mileage you need cover up to with the quality and value of the protection plan. Make sure you also consider reviews, customer ratings and the added extras you get with each to make sure you get the biggest bang for your buck.
Extended Warranties and High-Mileage Cars
An extended warranty is particularly recommended if you own a high-mileage vehicle. You’ll be outside the permitted mileage range of the factory warranty, and it’s more likely the car’s parts have suffered natural wear and will soon need replacing—however well you’ve stuck to the maintenance schedule. Just make sure you do your research and get the best extended warranty coverage plan to suit your needs, being careful to read the small print before you sign.