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Extended Automobile Warranty Coverage: 4 Myths of Buying an Extended Warranty from Dealers

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Extended Automobile Warranty Coverage: 4 Myths of Buying an Extended Warranty from Dealers

Joel Walsh
March 2, 2006

Poor used car dealers. With consumers learning more and more about them from the internet, overcharging for the automobile itself isn't as easy as it used to be. Fortunately for the poor used car dealers, they've found something else to gouge consumers for: extended automobile warranty coverage.

What's wrong with extended automobile warranties? Absolutely nothing. In fact, given the expensive surprises used cars always pack under the hood, extended automobile warranty coverage is essential. The problem is that dealers overcharge, often by as much as $1,000.

It's one of the biggest secrets of the used car industry. You can buy the same extended warranty the dealer will sell you for much less. Why? The dealer is simply buying the extended automobile warranties from a warranty company and marking the prices up.

This is no small secret. Used car dealers are making an ever larger share of their money from selling extended automobile warranties. Unfortunately, when buying an automobile, extended warranty coverage is not a high priority for most consumers. That's especially bad considering the average person knows even less about extended automobile warranty coverage than about automobiles. There are 4 Extremely Common Myths about Buying an Extended Warranty:

Myth 1: Extended warranties aren't necessary. Fact: Even if a car is in mint condition (and almost no used car really is), it won't stay that way long. Automobiles, like people, develop problems as they age. Besides, even the most thorough inspection can't guarantee there are no problems. Often, the consumer first learns from the dealer that for a used automobile extended warranty coverage is essential. The unprepared buyer simply takes the first warranty offered.

Myth 2: Used car dealerships are the only place you can buy extended automobile warranties. Fact: used car dealerships are generally buying their used automobile warranties from somewhere else and then reselling them for a big markup. You can just buy the warranty from the company yourself.

Myth 3: Comparable extended warranties for the same automobile will cost about the same. Fact: for the same automobile, extended warranty coverage prices can vary as much as $1,000 across comparable warranties.

Myth 4: Used automobile warranties all offer essentially the same protection. Fact: there are important differences in coverage from warranty to warranty. The biggest difference is power-train-only versus bumper-to-bumper. Some warranties have extremely restrictive rules about what damage is covered. There are even a few that only pay for repairs by reimbursement rather than direct to the service provider.

In short, you're better off not buying used automobile extended warranty coverage from a used automobile dealer. You'll save money comparison shop among automobile warranty issuers to find the extended automobile warranty that's the best value for all. After all, do you really want to buy any more from a used car dealer than you absolutely have to?

Joel Walsh, a freelance automotive writer recommends Auto Service Warranty, Inc. Where you can get a used auto warranty quote online in seconds: http://www.AutoServiceWarranty.com/ [Publish this article on your website! Requirement: live link for above URL/web address w/ link text/anchor text: "used auto warranty" OR leave this bracketed message intact.]

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