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The car warranty. Extending the car’s factory warranty

Added 10 January 2022 by

Individual components of a car are subject to natural wear and tear. However, there are faults not caused by the passage of time but rather material and factory defects. In such situations, drivers carefully check the warranty terms and conditions and look for ways to save on repairs. But if your car’s guarantee is about to lapse, it’s worth looking into extending the factory car warranty. Find out whether it is a cost-effective solution and what you can gain by doing so.

 

Standard car warranty

The manufacturer’s standard car warranty is a voluntary statement that the car shall work trouble-free for a specified period. In the European Union, all products sold must be covered by a warranty [gwarancja] or implied warranty [rękojmia]. It means that the manufacturer cannot evade responsibility for defects or faults that occurred through no fault of the user. At present, the warranty period is usually two years. The warranty allows us to remove factory defects of the car free of charge; the warranty usually covers such elements and defective subassemblies as:

  • body perforation, perforation corrosion,
  • paint coating if the defect has not been caused by a user’s fault. It is worth paying attention to the rules of repairing such a defect because it is different from the body perforation and the warranty periods. For example, body perforation may be covered by a 2-year warranty, while a 3-year warranty may cover the paint coating,
  • engine
  • transmission (manual and automatic gearboxes),
  • transmission shafts,
  • chassis components, front and rear suspension beams,
  • steering,
  • non-operational components of the braking system: master cylinder with brake booster
  • hydropneumatic system,
  • fuel system,
  • electrical faults,
  • cooling system
  • dynamic systems,
  • safety features.

The warranty covers some of the above elements up to a specific mileage limit. When buying a car, it is good to check which systems and parts are protected to a limited extent.

 

What does a car warranty not cover?

Basically, a car warranty covers manufacturing and material defects. The basic warranty does not cover defects that occur as a result of the regular use of the vehicle, such as wear and tear of the tyres or brake discs. The most common parts excluded from the warranty protection are:

  • fuel, air and oil filters,
  • lubricants,elem greases, oils,
  • fluids for the cooling system, power steering, brakes, windscreen washer fluid, air conditioning coolant,
  • brake system and its components: brake pads and shoes, brake discs and drums,
  • clutch disc with pressure plate and thrust bearing,
  • high-voltage cables, ignition coils, filaments and diodes, bulbs and fuses,
  • the windscreen, windows, window and door seals,
  • wiper arms and blades,
  • the basic warranty usually excludes anti-dust elements of the air-conditioning systems,
  • V-belts and ribbed belts, rims, hubcaps, drive belt pulleys and tensioners,
  • spark plugs and glow plugs,
  • although the exhaust system is not a typical operating component, manufacturers usually exclude it from the warranty.

If you are not sure which parts are uncovered, check your car’s warranty terms and conditions.

 

What is a factory car warranty extension?

An extended vehicle warranty is an additional instrument that a car owner can opt for when purchasing a car or already using it. Usually, such a warranty covers the same scope as in the case of a new vehicle – however, it is not usually granted by the manufacturer but by an insurance company. It is a form of insurance by which we extend the period during which we need not worry about the costs of repairing material or workmanship defects. The basic warranty is understood as the buyer’s protection against the costs of repairing manufacturing defects in the first 2-3 years of operation. However, it can be extended to maintain security and peace of mind. In a way, it allows us to transfer the risk of using an ageing car to another party. Companies that provide such insurance are often associated with the car manufacturer, usually being a part of the manufacturer’s corporation. A prolonged warranty from the corporation is a testimony of the product’s high quality.

 

What does the extension of the car’s factory warranty give?

The main advantage of warranty extension is peace of mind and easy calculation of our budget. We eliminate the risk of incurring huge costs of unforeseen failures of elements covered. The annual cost of such insurance is incomparably lower than the amount paid for a single major repair after the warranty has lapsed. All repairs in this period will be done with original spare parts. It ensures the proper work of all sub-assemblies and allows to keep a higher share of the initial car value. Benefits from the prolonged warranty include:

  • attractive insurance price in compared to the cost of covered repairs
  • free repairs of failures and defects – both in terms of parts and labour
  • professional vehicle repairs in authorised workshops, using original spare parts
  • advanced diagnostics using authorised equipment – faster removal of faults and defects
  • better budget planning – you know exactly how much you will pay for the warranty, as opposed to the unpredictable costs of repairing random breakdowns.
  • the option to assign the insurance to the new owner – that translates into a higher price at car resale.
  • the duration of the warranty can be combined with the mileage limit – if we know how many kilometres we want to cover, we can reduce the insurance price
  • the time of the breakdown cover can also be prolonged within the warranty – it will prevent spending a small fortune on car towing 
  • simple procedure – especially when the company offering the warranty extension is part of the car manufacturer’s corporation
  • in the case of a company car – the amount for the extended warranty can be included in the tax-deductible costs
  • in some cases, we can also get a replacement car for the time of repair; sometimes, the manufacturer also covers the cost of towing to the service station.

As shown above, the benefits of extending a manufacturer’s warranty are quite significant.

 

How not lose your car warranty?

Although the warranty protects you from unplanned expenses, it is vital to remember that the manufacturer or retailer will often try to evade responsibility for rectifying a fault or defect. Generally speaking, to maintain warranty protection, you must have your car regularly serviced by an authorised garage, per the manufacturer’s instructions. Each inspection should be recorded in the service log. Any tampering with the vehicle – using parts other than original, electronic tuning or fitting additional sensors or LPG installation – may cancel the warranty, even if the installed component has nothing to do with the claimed defect. Furthermore, maintaining the warranty requires increased financial outlays – as we know, repairs in dealership workshops are not cheap.

 

Warranty for fully electric and hybrid cars

Electric and hybrid cars are also covered by a warranty, although different in certain aspects. Particular attention should be paid to the guarantee for the battery capacity and electric motor, inverter, portal axles, VCM module, power converter, power supply and individual cables, and other consumable parts related to the power supply of the hybrid or electric vehicle. For example, Toyota tests the hybrid drive after a specific mileage is exceeded. If the car passes the test, the hybrid battery warranty is extended for another year or 15,000 kilometres.

 

Terms and conditions of factory car warranty – ranking

Find out what warranties different brands offer. When does the warranty expire, and what does it cover?

 

Volvo

Volvo provides a 2-year warranty from the purchase date with no mileage limit. It does not cover servicing and adjustments, damage, premature or normal wear and tear or mechanical breakdown (mainly bodywork). It also provides a 12-year anti-corrosion warranty in the event of perforation of the body. It only applies in the event of manufacturing defects.

Land Rover

Land Rover provides a mechanical warranty of 3 years or 100,000 kilometres. Separately, it gives a perforation warranty for six years without a mileage limit. It also provides a paint warranty without a mileage limit.

Opel

Opel gives a 2-year warranty on every new car from the purchase date. In addition, Opel offers a yearly 24/24 assistance service. Opel also provides a 12-year warranty on body corrosion perforation, except for eight years for the Combo and six years for the Movano models.

Renault

Renault grants a two- or three-year warranty on its cars, depending on the model. If a defect renders your vehicle immobile, you can benefit from the 24/24 road assistance option, where the warranty also covers the cost of labour and parts. The paint warranty is three years, while the anti-corrosion warranty – 12 years. It also provides a one-year repair warranty that covers all repairs carried out in the Renault network

Kia

Kia provides a 7-year warranty on its vehicles with a 150,000-kilometre limit. It covers all manufacturing defects that occur during this time. Some components are covered by a limited warranty, meaning they can only be repaired at the manufacturer’s expense during a specific period.

SEAT

SEAT’s warranty is five years and limited to 150,000 kilometres (first two years without any limit). Additionally, it provides a 3-year warranty for paint and a 12-year warranty for body perforation.

Porsche

Porsche stands out with its warranty terms. It can be extended to even fifteen years. It is granted to drivers who bought a new car and those who purchased a used Porsche or whose vehicle is not entitled to a warranty but passes tests examining 111 checkpoints.

Volkswagen

Volkswagen cars come with a 2-year warranty with no mileage limit. In addition, there is a 3-year warranty on paintwork and a 12-year warranty on body perforation. In the case of cars equipped with high-voltage batteries, they are guaranteed for eight years or 160,000 kilometres, whichever comes first.

 

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The car warranty. Extending the car's factory warranty
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The car warranty. Extending the car's factory warranty
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If your car's guarantee is about to lapse, it's worth looking into extending the factory car warranty. Find out whether it is a cost-effective solution.
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autoDNA
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