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What Is Covered Under a 1-Year Extended Warranty?

BY: Adam Karner
Two car mechanics checking a vehicle's brakes while it is on a lift.

When the weather starts to warm up and spring approaches, having a car is a great way to get out and start having some adventures. From extended road trips to quickly running to the store or picking up your favorite bite to eat, your vehicle can help you get where you are going and keep you safe while on the road. The key to vehicle longevity and reliability is timely repairs and maintenance. If you want to make sure that your car stays dependable no matter where you go, taking the time to protect it and care for it will work wonders. 

With an extended warranty, you can help ensure that your vehicle can last for years while helping you save money. However, before choosing the right type of warranty coverage for you, it’s important to learn what that coverage will entail and how long it will last, such as finding out if a 1-year warranty is worth it and what’s covered in it.

What Are Extended Warranties & Are They Worth It?

An extended warranty, also known as a vehicle service contract (VSC) when provided by anyone other than your automaker, is a coverage plan for your car that extends past the original manufacturer’s warranty that came with your vehicle. Almost all new cars come with this kind of limited warranty that can help with the cost of repairs for covered items and defective parts caused by poor workmanship or premature wear caused by normal use. However, while a manufacturer’s warranty can provide near-complete bumper-to-bumper protection, some exclusions will apply, so it’s vital to read the fine print when purchasing a brand new vehicle

These also usually last for a specified period of time from the date of purchase as laid out by the automaker, usually lasting between three or five years or 36,000 or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. That means once your manufacturer’s warranty coverage runs out, you will be financially responsible for anything that wears out or breakdowns on your own. This is where the true cost of a vehicle starts to add up. 

A vehicle service contract from a third party can extend this warranty period and help cover the cost of repairs after the factory warranty coverage runs out. Unlike car insurance, which will only cover repairs in the event of an accident, a VSC will help cover repairs that need to be done due to regular use of the car. Mechanical breakdown insurance (MBI), also sometimes referred to as car repair insurance, is another alternative to an extended warranty but is typically only available for vehicles under a year old, and many will not qualify. 

An auto protection plan or service contract can help pay for some of the most expensive repairs you might face as a car owner. For example, many vehicles will experience alternator failure at some point. A new alternator can cost between $571 and $740, depending on the make and model of your car. If you have a vehicle service contract that covers electrical components, it can help you pay for this and many more kinds of repairs, including covered parts such as your electrical system and air conditioning systems, depending on your plan. 

An Endurance protection plan can cover nearly any type of vehicle for a wide variety of repairs and procedures, and many of the plans are tailored to your individual needs. Some can even start as low as $79/month! Not only that, but you can get peace of mind with the Advantage plan, which covers repairs and provides up to $3,500 in maintenance coverage. That includes essentials such as up to three oil and filter changes, alignment checks, tire rotations, state safety inspection services, and more to be sure that your vehicle is kept in good working order. 

Owners of select luxury vehicles can also find coverage with Endurance’s new Supreme for Highline vehicles plan, including those from Alpha Romeo, Audi, BMW, Jaguar, Maserati and Mercedes-Benz. You’ll also get 24/7 roadside assistance for free regardless of the Endurance plan you choose as well as the opportunity to enjoy one year of Elite Benefits for just a small activation fee. These extra perks and savings will include key fob replacements, total loss protection and even up to two tire replacements or repairs, helping to give you a much wider range of coverage and benefits.  

What’s Covered Under a 1-Year Warranty?

While you will have always benefited from a manufacturer’s warranty if you have purchased a brand new car from a dealership, many car owners might not have ever dealt with extended coverage. If you have never purchased an auto protection plan before, it can be difficult to know how much coverage you need and for how long you need it. Depending on the type of coverage you want and the kind of car you have, the length of your contract can change. This will also mean that the price of your coverage and what is covered can change as well. Other things, such as potential add-ons to your plan, can also impact your overall policy, including what is covered and how long that coverage is active. However, because vehicle service contracts are actual contracts, they will have specific terms for how long you have to sign up, so be sure to read the fine print. But how long should you get coverage for?

Many car owners may think that the shorter the contract, the better, especially when you may not be familiar with them before seeing how it goes—sort of like a test period, which will often be for a year. Many extended warranty and vehicle service contract providers such as Carchex offer a one-year contract for their plans, covering everything from the powertrain to the heating and cooling systems. CarShield even offers month-to-month contracts for those who really are looking for short-term coverage. 

The downside of getting a short contract is that most cars will not need any repairs in the first year after their manufacturer’s warranty has run out. And unless you are getting coverage on an incredibly high-mileage vehicle, you will probably not end up using your plan and any additional add-ons you may have purchased within the year-(or shorter) span your contract is for. You’ll most likely be looking to have to renew your contract entirely without ever benefiting from its coverage at the end of it without ever having used it. Plus, the shorter your contract is, the more expensive it will usually be. If you sign up for coverage for a longer period, you save money on your repairs and the coverage itself. 

Depending on the plan you choose, such as the Advantage protection plan from Endurance, you may even be able to benefit from extras such as saving on maintenance services. This comprehensive protection package is designed to give you peace of mind when it comes to your vehicle’s most important components from the cost of unexpected breakdowns while also helping you save up to $3,500 in yearly maintenance services. That means you can save on the cost of tire rotations, alignment checks, engine diagnostic exams and more — at no additional cost to you. You will even have the chance to save even more with several special, one-time services, including cooling system maintenance, a front or rear wiper blade set replacement, a battery replacement and more.

How Long Do Extended Warranties Last?

Ultimately, the length of your extended warranty or vehicle service contract will depend on the provider you choose. However, while some may be able to give you coverage for a year or month-by-month, that’s not always the best to have. For example, a late model vehicle may just be past its manufacturer’s warranty coverage but is still running smoothly to avoid potential major issues. This means a monthly or yearly plan may not ever be used, leaving you to renew the plan to help ensure you are covered for an inevitable breakdown or repair. 

Instead, when you have an Endurance auto protection plan, you can be certain that you’ll have coverage that lasts for two years, which is a perfect amount of time to feel protected and get the coverage you need for your vehicle. By signing up for a plan like this, you can be sure that help will be available when you need it without dealing with the hassle of renewing your plan regularly. That means you can enjoy the affordable Secure plan, the high-mileage coverage of the Select Premier plan or the exclusionary coverage of the Supreme protection plan. You don’t even have to worry if you end up wanting to sell your vehicle, as Endurance plans are both tailored to your needs and designed to be as specific to your car as possible; most are transferable. This means that you can give any potential buyers the reassurance they need that we’ll cover the car if they purchase it. Additionally, regardless of the coverage plan you choose, you will also be able to enjoy the benefit of a 30-day money-back guarantee, flexible payment plans and 24/7 roadside assistance, trip interruption coverage and rental car reimbursements.

Get Peace of Mind for the Road Ahead with Endurance 

Whether you have owned your vehicle for a few days, weeks or years, making you stay up-to-date on essential maintenance is key for it lasting for even more years to come. But, sometimes, even the most well-maintained vehicles can experience an unexpected breakdown or repair from time to time. If you don’t have the help of a manufacturer’s warranty coverage, you’d be left paying for repairs yourself. That’s why if you plan on owning your car for a year or more, a VSC from Endurance can keep it running smoothly and reliably for as long as you own it. 

With Endurance’s wide range of coverage plans, you not only get the repairs you need when your insurance doesn’t cover them, but you can also get help paying up to $3,500 in yearly maintenance services with the Advantage plan. You can even save on the costly repairs of select luxury vehicles with the Supreme for Highline vehicles plan while enjoying the perks of 24/7 roadside assistance, trip interruption and substitute transport coverage for free, regardless of the plan you choose. Not only that, but new and existing Endurance customers can also receive one year of Elite Benefits with a small, one-time activation fee of $20, including such as total loss protection, tire replacements or repairs, key fob replacements and other great perks.

You can request a free quote for more information about Advantage, Supreme for Highline vehicles or any Endurance protection plan. Our award-winning customer care team is also available to help you when you call (800) 253-8203. You can also visit the Endurance blog for more helpful and informative articles on various topics such as make/model comparisons, expert auto tips, and DIY maintenance how-tos for any time of the year.

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