Do warranties cover failures caused by general wear and tear?
11 September 2023
By Joy Pearson
Buying a vehicle comes with the responsibility of understanding your warranty coverage. Yet, there are often two critical questions that surface: Does the warranty extend to failures resulting from general wear and tear? And, is there a waiting period before the warranty becomes active? In today's post, hopefully you will get some clarity on the ins and outs of your warranty and help you navigate the intricacies of what's covered and when.
Wear and tear are part and parcel of owning any vehicle. Over time, components like brakes, tires, and belts naturally degrade due to regular use. However, these wear-and-tear items typically fall outside the scope of warranty coverage. Standard warranties, whether they come with a new car purchase or are available for used vehicles, are designed to cover defects in materials and workmanship rather than the normal aging of parts.
So what does that mean for you as a car owner? While your warranty can be alifesave when it comes to unexpected mechanical or electrical issues, you'll still need to budget for routine maintenance and replacements of wear-and-tear items. Regular servicing, including brake pad replacements, tire rotations, and oil changes, remains your responsibility to keep you vehicle in good working condition. However, it's essential to read the fine print of your warranty agreement carefully. Some extended warranties or comprehensive coverage plans might offer limited coverage for specific wear-and-tear components, but this often comes at an additional cost. Always clarify with your warranty provider to determine what, if any, wear-and-tear items are included in your coverage.
The waiting period, also known as a waiting or exclusionary period, is a crucial aspect of warranty coverage. It defines the duration between when you purchase a warranty and when you can start using it's benefits. Waiting periods are in place to prevent individuals from buying a warranty after an issue has already occured and seeking immediate repairs, essentially using the warranty as a quick fix. The waiting period often varies depending on the warranty provider and the type of coverage you choose.
Standard Manufacturer's Warranty: New cars often come with a standard manufacturer's warranty that begins from the vehicle's in-service date of the date of sale. There's usually no waiting period for these warranties, meaning you can access coverage immediately.
Extended Warranties: If you opt for an exteneded warranty, whether from the manufacturer or a third-party provider, there may be a waiting period. Waiting periods can range from a few days to several months. During this time, you won't be able to make warranty claims for repairs. It's crucial to review the terms and conditions of your extended warranty to understand the waiting period and when coverage starts.
While standard warranties typically do not cover wear-and-tear items, they can be a valuable safety net for unexpected defects. Be aware of any waiting periods associated with your warranty to ensure you're prepared for any potential repairs down the road. Always read and understand the specifics of your warranty agreement to make the most of your coverage.