Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Extended Warranty - an informative post

There are several different philosophies about extended warranties. Should you buy into one or not? When we bought the Alfa four years ago, we passed on the extended warranty offered by the dealer and purchased one recommended by another blogger. It was more reasonable and seemed to cover more.  As it turned out, we tried making a couple of claims that were denied, or only covered a very small amount, so we just took care of it ourselves. But it did pay out on two claims, not in full, but enough that we got about 1/2 of the original premium back. 

So when it came time to consider getting another extended warranty on our eight year old motorhome, we were willing to do it. I looked around and decided on using Wholesale Warranties in San Diego. It had been recommended on the RV Dreams blog, and I could not find anything but positive reviews for the company. 

A three year, 36,000 mile extended warranty for an eight year old diesel pusher is not inexpensive. But as one person put it, it is legalized gambling. We hope we don't have a major breakdown, but if we do it should pay off. Anyway it should lessen the pain. 

One of the things I appreciate about the policy we are getting is that before issuance, a full inspection of the rig was required. That happened yesterday, and the inspector wrote the most glowing evaluation possible! Yes, we had to pay for it, but we know they won't call "pre-existing condition" on us like the other company did. We are as good as a new rig in the eyes of the insurance company (I hope). 

When I started with "there are several different philosophies about extended warranties", I'm thinking of people who "self insure" by putting money away each month toward repairs. When we started, in theory I set $5000 aside for repairs, but as it turned out all our money is sort of lumped together in savings and investments. My theoretical $5000 was quickly used up for new tires, carpeting, satellite dish, TV, etc. These were all necessary, but not necessary emergencies. We expect to spend $1000 per year on normal maintenance, but that wouldn't go very far toward a major engine breakdown.  So we are willing to pay the $132 per month for the extended warranty. For us it is easier than trying to maintain a special fund for repairs vs. maintenance and improvements we just want. It's all money spent.

Those of you who have fifth wheels or travel trailers would certainly have lower costs, but then you still have to have a big, powerful pickup for pulling some of them. I don't know if that is less expensive to maintain (in total) or not. I guess it's all just apples and oranges, and only the insurance companies are winners in the long run.

I just hope we have no breakdowns before September 6. That is the day the old policy expires and the new one starts.

We have gone over the new policy as carefully as we can and think it has as good coverage as we can get on our "old girl". One thing that is attractive to me (but wasn't why we bought this policy) is that it covers four days at a motel if the rig is in the shop. Yes the coverage is only for $60 per night, but it is better than nothing!

Comments that include your thoughts on extended warranties are welcome...


  1. When I bought The Palms, she was 5 years old and had very low mileage (which isn't necessarily a good thing). The dealer offered me an extended warranty, and then I went on-line to find my own. The dealer's warranty was so much more expensive! I ended up not purchasing one, but if I had, it would have been one that I found on my own. :)

  2. Like you said it is a gamble. However I always seem to lose when I gamble.

  3. I used to be quite good at selling those extended warranties... I didn't use this line, but one I heard of was: "I would recommend it if my mother was buying it"...

  4. We didn't buy one at the time because we are both pretty handy and have a crapload of tools on board (and know how to use them) .... but if we were older, or if I was travelling alone, I would have one for sure. We have had only two major breakdowns on the road, which were only $850 on the motorhome and another most recent one $2,250 on the toad. The rest of the stuff we fix along the way has been minor.

  5. Our diesel pusher destroyed one fuel injector at 60k miles, and was working on a second injector. We had to be loaded on a landoll and carted off to the diesel repair shop for three weeks for an in frame rebuild. It was a freak failure, but that did not make it any less expensive. Anyway, put me in the extended warranty believer column. We have gotten back waaaaaaaay more than we put in to the price of the policy.

  6. The best place to find a warranty is in the company that excepts than
    If you're looking for an engine warranty go to a cat dealer Cummings dealer Mercedes dealer GM dealer
    And sit down with their service rep ( notice I didn't say engine salesman )and go over the good ones and the bad ones they don,t derive any money from the transaction sales it all boils down to they don't care what insurance you use The bill is going to get paid by somebody
    One other thing
    The next time you get an oil change get an oil sample and have it analyzed
    And have the service manager go over that with you
    It would cost about 25 or $30 but it'll tell you a whole lot about your engine internally
    Have a great day

    1. I forgot to add a dealers warranty can bought privately The kickback goes to the dealer that sells it
      that is separate of his sales commission

  7. I'm a believer. I didn't even have AAA until this year; I was given a membership by my sons. I recently had the need to make a service call for a tow truck. We were in the middle of nowhere with no cell service and a local allowed us to make the call. What a relief not having to worry about who to call; they looked after who to call and what to do. I think extended warrantee will provide the peace of mind needed for life on the road and well worth the monthly premium. Thanks for sharing.

  8. The price of an extended auto warranty is often much more reasonable than what you would have to pay should you need to get your car fixed in the future. Therefore, by spending a smaller amount of money in the beginning you may save yourself quite a few dollars in the end should repairs or replacement parts be necessary for your automobile.



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