What You Need to Know About Used Car Warranties

December 12th, 2014 by


Buying a pre-owned vehicle is a smart choice for a lot of reasons. Get lots of great features for less. Avoid the serious depreciation you deal with when buying new. And pay less for registration and insurance.

But one aspect that tends to confuse people when they’re buying from used car dealerships in Rhode Island is the warranty. Since it’s not a brand new car, what are the best options to make sure you’re covered without overspending?

What Does Certified Pre-owned Mean?

When a car is certified pre-owned, it meets certain criteria set by the manufacturer and comes backed with a factory warranty.

In order to become certified, late-model cars are typically inspected and refurbished before getting the okay from the manufacturer.

Not only will these kinds of vehicles come with warranties direct from the maker, but you can usually get other benefits like special financing too.

What’s Typical with Other Used Cars?

When you buy a used car, most dealers will offer you a basic warranty and include it in the price. But it’s unlikely that your vehicle will require service during the limited time period it covers.

To Get an Extended Warranty or Not?

The dealer may encourage you to go for an extended warranty so you know that parts and service will be all set for the next several years.

And there are definitely advantages to this. Specialists will repair your car, and the service will happen as quickly as possible. Plus you won’t get hit with big, unexpected costs when your vehicle does have a problem.

But it is important to stop for a moment and ask yourself if it’s really worth it. This has a lot to do with the car that you’re purchasing.

How valuable is the vehicle in its current state? How expensive will repairs for that particular model probably be in the future? How long do you plan on driving it?

Is the Price Negotiable?

If you feel strongly that it would be good to have the extra coverage, discuss it with the dealer and try to work it into the purchase price. It is something that you can negotiate.

Extended warranties are often marked up, so you want to make sure you get the best quote. You may even want to call around and get some different numbers for comparison.

The process of buying a car can take several hours, and it might seem difficult to hash out the extended warranty in the moment. But by weighing your options carefully, you could end up saving yourself a lot of money.

Are Aftermarket Warranties Any Good?

Though it’s common for people to be wary of these kinds of warranties, there are some good ones out there.

A lot of them even use the same companies for service as those used for factory warranties. Your best bet is to do some serious research.

Make sure that you pick a legitimate company that is endorsed by the BBB. Check reviews online to find out if the company has a good reputation.

And carefully read through the ins and outs of the warranty before making a final decision. Double check that it provides all the coverage you’re looking for.