Your Guide to Aftermarket Auto Warranties

Giulia Nigrini
Giulia Nigrini
Vehicle Service Contract Specialist, Traveler, Car Enthusiast
January 7, 2022
min. read
dashboard, windshield, and driver's hand with the view from the back seat of a car

Are you in the market for an aftermarket warranty and you want to know all there is to know before making your decision? Good idea. Auto warranties are sold with terms and conditions that can seem misleading if you are not familiar with what all the jargon means. Read on further as we discuss all the aspects you need to know, this is your guide to aftermarket auto warranties.

What is an Aftermarket Auto Warranty?

An aftermarket auto warranty is a vehicle service contract designed to cover your vehicle for parts and labor in the event of a mechanical breakdown. They are most often referred to as extended car warranties colloquially. The aftermarket auto warranties, or vehicle service contracts, are available in two main tiers. The powertrain plan and the bumper-to-bumper plan, which is sometimes called the exclusionary plan. Though the aftermarket auto warranty plans are available in other tiers with slight variations in terms we are going to focus on these two main ones for the purpose of this article.

What does an Aftermarket Auto Warranty Cover?

Third-party aftermarket auto warranty providers offer powertrain plans and bumper-to-bumper plans that cover the most critical components of your vehicle. Powertrain plans sit on the most basic tier of warranty options and ensure that all of the parts within your car’s powertrain will be covered. These parts include:

Bumper-to-bumper warranties cover the same parts as the powertrain plan but then include electrical components, the fuel system, A/C, and cooling systems. Sometimes referred to as an exclusionary warranty due to having fewer parts not covered than those covered. Components typically excluded from bumper-to-bumper warranties are very few and include:

Many of the plans the providers on Chaiz offer wonderful perks to go with your aftermarket auto warranty/vehicle service contract purchase. We will get into those shortly.

What do Warranty Terms Mean?

Aftermarket auto warranty terms are applied to both powertrain and bumper-to-bumper warranty plans. Powertrain warranties tend to have longer terms than bumper-to-bumper warranties, ranging from 2 to 10 years or 36,000 to 100,000 miles whichever comes first. So what does that mean exactly?

If you have warranty terms of 3 years or 60,000 miles “whichever comes first” then you essentially have a warranty that is valid for a maximum of 3 years or a maximum of 60,000 miles. So if you reach 60,000 miles used before your warranty expires then the warranty will be terminated. Ideally, you want to have the warranty running for the full 3 years.

What Perks come with Third-Party Aftermarket Auto Warranties?

Many factory warranties do have some benefits but are usually very limited. Third-party warranty providers give you a much better range of perks and optional additional coverage items. Some Perks that come with the aftermarket auto warranty may include all or some of the following:

Is an Extended Warranty Right for Me?

An aftermarket auto warranty is there to alleviate the stress of inevitable auto repairs that comes after years of wear and tear. Sometimes these repairs can involve replacements of whole systems and cost thousands of dollars. So if you do not have the possibility to keep upwards of $1,000 set aside for unforeseen auto repairs, I would certainly suggest investing in an extended warranty. Plus the perks are a great benefit when you’re stuck on the side of the road or far from home.

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