Prepaid Maintenance vs Extended Warranty
Since deciding whether or not a vehicle service contract or an extended warranty makes sense for your situation can be difficult, our team at the Germain Motor Company wants to help clear up the confusion. In this helpful guide, we’ll explain the pros and cons of choosing a vehicle service contract (also known as prepaid maintenance) and an extended warranty.
Vehicle Service Contract Explained
When shopping for your next new or pre-owned vehicle, you may be presented with the option of purchasing a vehicle service contract. Also commonly referred to as prepaid maintenance, a vehicle service contract covers scheduled maintenance services as specified by the manufacturer for a specific time period or amount of mileage. Whether offered through the manufacturer, selling dealership, or a third party — vehicle service contracts can often be customized to meet your specific needs. Choosing a vehicle service contract is an excellent choice for out-of-warranty used cars or those who are looking for extra security for long-term ownership.
Advantages of Choosing a Vehicle Service Contract
- Lock-in maintenance costs – Instead of worrying about how much a particular service such as an oil change or tire rotation will cost, a vehicle service contracts locks in pricing ahead of time. No unexpected cost increases will catch you by surprise.
- Discounted prices – Not only will your costs be locked in ahead of time, you’ll also find plenty of discounts when you purchase a vehicle service contract. To ensure that a particular dealership or manufacturer retains your business for as long as you own your vehicle, prepaid maintenance plans are frequently cheaper on a per-service basis compared to paying as you go.
- Simplifies ownership – There are already enough factors for you to consider when buying your next vehicle. Knowing that all of your regularly performed maintenance services are scheduled and paid for ahead of time can add peace of mind.
Extended Warranty Contracts Explained
One of the biggest factors many consumers report considering when purchasing their next vehicle is warranty coverage. Although a brand’s reputation for reliability and initial quality can play a role in your decision, warranty coverage provides an extra layer of defense against costly repair bills. Another fact to consider is that warranty coverage can vary wildly depending on which manufacturer you choose.
One important area in which an extended warranty differs from a vehicle service contract is what it covers. VSCs cover routine maintenance services such as tire rotations or oil changes. Extended warranties cover the costs of repairs in the event of a breakdown, which are often significantly more expensive. Current trends indicate that drivers are keeping their vehicles longer than ever before, further highlighting the appeal of an extended warranty contract.
Advantages of Choosing an Extended Warranty Contract
- Protection from expensive repairs – Probably the biggest reason to choose an extended warranty is the fact that you’ll be protected from expensive, unexpected repair bills. Today’s cars are packed with more cutting-edge technology than ever before. While these add both convenience and performance, their cost to repair is extremely high. Knowing you’re covered in the event of a failure is certainly a rewarding feeling.
- Customizable – Since no two situations are alike, extended warranty contracts are often fully customizable to fit your exact needs. Manufacturer warranties can vary wildly and extended warranty contracts can help fill the gaps or add additional coverage based on your driving habits. Some examples would include extending a short powertrain warranty or adding longer roadside assistance coverage beyond what the manufacturer offers.
- Convenience – Depending on the type of extended warranty you choose, you’ll enjoy added convenience when it comes time for repairs. You’ll have the flexibility to take your vehicle to any factory-authorized dealership across the country instead of being limited to just one dealer. All paperwork and payment will be handled by your dealer of choice, saving you time and hassle in the process.