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What Is a Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty?

POR: Larry Witherspoon Jr.
Woman Mechanic working under the hood at the repair garage

Purchasing a brand-new vehicle is a fantastic feeling for a number of reasons. Not only does it give you the complete freedom to go wherever you want, whenever you want, but with the benefit of a factory warranty watching over you, you can drive with total peace of mind. This kind of protection is worth its weight in gold, covering the full cost of any repair bills incurred as a result of component failure within a specified number of years/miles traveled (whichever comes first).

A factory warranty is usually broken down into several parts, with each covering a different aspect of your vehicle and lasting a different length of time. For example, powertrain coverage will specifically protect those crucial components that power your vehicle forward, while corrosion coverage ensures your car’s body doesn’t succumb to the elements too quickly. The part that gets owners most excited, however, is the bumper-to-bumper warranty, which can be a real lifesaver should anything go wrong with your vehicle.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll examine bumper-to-bumper warranties, including what’s included, what’s excluded, and the benefits of having one to help pay for repair costs.

Anatomy of a Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty

Entonces, what exactly does a bumper-to-bumper warranty entail? The clue is in the name, as this kind of factory warranty covers more or less everything between your front and rear bumpers. While there are, of course, some exceptions to the rule, a bumper-to-bumper warranty is for sure the most comprehensive coverage you can get when it comes to protecting your car (and your wallet) from unexpected component failure.

Your bumper-to-bumper warranty covers plenty of key components, including electrical systems, HVAC, drivetrain, and more. The major downside is that the bumper-to-bumper section of your factory warranty is almost guaranteed to be the shortest, typically expiring in around three years. Thankfully, the most important/expensive components will be covered under your powertrain warranty, which usually lasts at least a couple of years longer.

Once your bumper-to-bumper warranty expires, any components that aren’t covered by other parts of your factory warranty will become your responsibility. This means that should they fail, you, as the owner, will need to arrange for their repair and settle the bill once the work has been completed. If you want to avoid this, you’ll need to find an extended warranty or vehicle service contract that meets your needs.

What’s Covered by a Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty?

What’s covered under your bumper-to-bumper warranty will ultimately depend on your manufacturer and vehicle model, but you can bet there’ll be far more inclusions than there are exclusions. Certain components will almost certainly be in your contract, however:

1. Powertrain

A factory warranty wouldn’t be very worthwhile if it didn’t cover your vehicle’s most important (and expensive components). While you’ll most likely have a powertrain warranty on top of your bumper-to-bumper, both look out for the parts that keep your vehicle moving forward, such as the engine, transmission, driveshaft, and transfer case.

2. Steering

You’d be forgiven for assuming that steering is included as part of a powertrain warranty, but that isn’t usually the case. These components are more often part of your bumper-to-bumper warranty, which covers your rack and pinion, power steering, and more.

3. Air Conditioning

Your bumper-to-bumper warranty also covers your air conditioning system, including the condenser, compressor, evaporator, and other key components.

4. Electrical Components

Usually, the less comprehensive warranty plans don’t go near electrical components, but your bumper-to-bumper covers plenty. Things like your battery alternator, power windows, and door locks will be protected, as well as others.

5. Safety Features

Your vehicle’s safety features are incredibly important for everyday driving, and your bumper-to-bumper warranty will make sure they stay in good working order. From seatbelts to airbags, if they stop functioning as they should, your manufacturer’s warranty will repair or replace them.

Exceptions to the Rule: What Isn’t Covered

A bumper-to-bumper warranty is, for certain, the most comprehensive coverage you can get for a vehicle, but there are still some things that they unfortunately don’t cover. For example:

  • Tires – You’ll find that components considered “high-wear” are among the things not covered by your bumper-to-bumper warranty — your tires being one of them.
  • Wiper blades – Wiper blades wear down even quicker than your tires do, so they’re another thing that bumper-to-bumper warranties generally avoid. Thankfully, they’re very cheap to replace, and you can easily do so yourself.
  • Brake pads – Although brake pads may be an incredibly important component, they wear down quickly, so they aren’t covered under a bumper-to-bumper warranty, just like tires and wiper blades.
  • General maintenance – A bumper-to-bumper warranty won’t cover general maintenance tasks like regular oil changes and tire rotations. Some extended warranties, like Endurance’s Advantage plan, will do so, however.
  • Cosmetic repairs – Scratches, dings, or dents on car body panels aren’t something that a bumper-to-bumper warranty covers. The same goes for repairs to interior fabrics and upholstery too.
  • Repairs due to incidents or inclement weather – While accidents can cause some pretty major repairs, you won’t find any sort of warranty that covers them. For this kind of protection, you need a solid auto insurance policy.

The Benefits of Comprehensive Coverage

Like any sort of warranty protection, the biggest and best benefit to having a bumper-to-bumper warranty is the money-saving potential. With one in place, almost every major or minor repair you’re likely to run into will be taken care of by your manufacturer, free of charge. It’s the fastest way to get total driving peace of mind because as long as you’re covered, you don’t need to worry about breakdowns or the rising cost of car ownership.

Real-Life Scenarios: Bumper-to-Bumper in Action

Let’s say you’re on a road trip. It’s a summer’s day, and you can see the heat reflecting off your car’s body panels. You’re hundreds of miles from home and enjoying every moment out on the road, but all of a sudden, you hear a hissing sound, and steam billows out from under the hood. Quickly, your car begins to lose power, and you’re forced to pull over. After a quick inspection, you’re almost certain it’s a blown head gasket — a repair that RepairPal estimates will set you back somewhere between $1,915 and $2,220.

Thankfully, you have a bumper-to-bumper warranty watching out for you, which includes powertrain protection. The repair is fully covered by your manufacturer, and thankfully, they offer roadside assistance as an added benefit. You give them a call, and before you know it, you’re being towed to the closest dealership. Once there, the mechanics get to work, and you’re offered a replacement vehicle in the meantime. After the work is done, you go back to collect your car, which has been returned to top working condition. Best of all, you don’t pay a penny for any of the work carried out.

Extended Warranties: Enhancing Your Coverage

A bumper-to-bumper warranty will no doubt be included as part of your vehicle’s factory warranty, but once it expires, you will be fully responsible for any future car repair bills that might rear their heads. If you want to continue enjoying the coverage that you’re used to, however, all is not lost. Thankfully, there are a couple of ways you can do just that.

The first is what’s commonly referred to as an extended car warranty. These are usually purchased via a dealership or directly from your manufacturer. They do exactly as the name implies by extending your factory warranty coverage beyond the date of expiry. This might sound great on paper, but extended warranties have some pretty major pitfalls that you should watch out for.

Contract prices are often so high they aren’t worth your while. All work must also be carried out at a dealership, which isn’t ideal if you break down hundreds of miles from one. To make matters worse, you can only purchase this type of extended warranty while your factory warranty is still active — leave it just a moment too late, and you’ll no longer qualify.

Because of this, the majority of people prefer a vehicle service contract from a third-party provider. These are a better alternative because third-party providers are incentivized to offer almost as comprehensive coverage at a much more affordable price, usually adding on some valuable extra perks to sweeten the deal. Better yet, you can have your car fixed at the certified automotive repair shop of your choice, and you don’t need a factory warranty to sign up for coverage, making it the ideal option for used car and even new car owners.

Only America’s Top Rated Extended Warranty Will Do

If you’re looking for a warranty provider, Endurance is the most trusted name in America. With some of the most comprehensive coverage around, we offer a wide range of auto protection plans designed for an even wider range of drivers, catering to casual commuters, rideshare drivers, high-mileage car owners, and almost everyone in between. We’re always willing to be flexible, too, so if the base plans don’t quite meet your needs or budget, our friendly team will be more than happy to customize a plan that checks all the right boxes.

The benefits don’t end at great coverage: we also add on some of the best benefits in the business. For example, every Endurance plan comes with 24/7 roadside assistance (including towing, fuel delivery, and lockout services), rental car reimbursement, and trip interruption costs as standard.

Better yet, all Endurance customers also get a year’s free access to our Paquete de beneficios Élite, which adds up to four tire repairs or replacements annually, key fob replacement, up to $500 in collision discounts, and up to $1,000 in total loss protection. Just pay a nominal activation fee, and they’re all yours to enjoy.

We’re also the direct administrator of all our plans, cutting out those pesky middlemen when you want to make a claim. If you ever have a question or query, our equipo de servicio al cliente galardonado is always on hand via phone or email. Plus, the Aplicación para teléfono inteligente Endurance gives you instant access to all of the most important plan information. If all that wasn’t enough, Endurance plans are also fully transferable to subsequent owners, giving you extra selling power should you decide to part ways with your vehicle and potentially increase its resale value.

Contact Endurance for a FREE Quote

Wherever you look online, experts agree that Endurance is the best vehicle service contract money can buy. Contact an Endurance plan advisor at (800) 253-8203 a Solicite una cotización GRATIS o tienda en linea para ver su precio ahora.

If you’d like to keep reading about all things automobile, we have plenty more informative articles just like this one on our extended warranty blog. Read warranty company comparisons with CarShield, CARCHEX, Omega Auto Care, and more.

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