A used-car warranty can be a tangled mess of options, but Popular Mechanics has put together a list of everything you need to know if you want the extended coverage through a manufacturer warranty or a private dealership. Most importantly, they provide a good way to decide whether you need the warranty or not.
Photo by Daniel Oines.
If you're picking up a car from a dealership then chances are you'll be offered one of two warranty options: a manufacturer certified warranty or a private warranty. Popular Mechanics suggests both are on equal ground as far as the potential coverage is concerned, but a more important factor is whether it's worth it. They suggest looking at a few factors beyond just repair cost:
Weigh what you owe on the car and its potential resale value; then consider whether you can afford to drop multiple thousands of dollars on a new engine or a replacement transmission, or whether the hedge of an extended warranty (which could cost you somewhere between $600 and $2000) is a smarter gamble.
Essentially, research the cost of repair work, but also factor in potential resale value and the amount you owe on the car to help you decide if it's worth the cost. As always with a warranty, make sure that major repair work is covered before you consider investing in it. Check out the post on Popular Mechanics for everything you need to know when deciding on a car warranty.
How to Get a Used-Car Warranty (and Not Get Screwed) [Popular Mechanics]