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What's in a New Car Warranty?

A warranty is essentially a promise from the manufacturer that the car you purchased from them will run reliably for a certain period of time. And if their parts or manufacturing process are faulty in any way, they'll take the steps to fix your car and make things right.

Car being towed

How Warranties Work

Warranties are typically broken out into a few different sections-usually based on the specific components covered.

Each section's coverage duration is typically expressed as a period of years and/or mileage-and each period may be different. For instance, your car's basic limited warranty may be 3 years/36,000 miles, but you may be protected against rust and corrosion for up to 10 years/100,000 miles. Regardless, the specific warranty is "up" when either one of those conditions are met.

Typically, manufacturers break warranty coverages down by:

The Basic Limited Warranty covers your car for just about everything-except items that typically wear out over time, like brake pads, oil filters, and wiper blades. For further details, check with your car dealership or check your owner's manual to see what's specifically covered.

The Powertrain Limited Warranty (also known as Drivetrain) covers the powertrain-the system that makes the car move, including the engine, transmission, drive axles and driveshaft. Again, you'll want to check with your car dealership or look in the owner's manual to understand your powertrain warranty's structure and limitations.

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Other Types of Warranty Coverage

Many warranties also provide coverage for rust/corrosion and perhaps even roadside assistance. But if your car's warranty coverage doesn't include roadside assistance, you can rely on Allstate. Our Good Hands® Roadside Assistance doesn't require a membership-it covers any driver, any car, any time with rates typically $75 per tow and $50 per other service in most cases. It's a great way to get help when you need it, without paying for a membership you might never use.

It's important to note that every warranty offer is different in some way, so be sure to consider your coverage needs when studying what's actually included.

Know Your Warranty's Limitations

New car warranties typically don't cover tasks considered to be routine maintenance. They also won't protect you against problems resulting from your failure to perform routine maintenance. So if you're thinking that 36 month/36,000 mile warranty lets you off the hook for changing your oil for the next 3 years, think again!

To keep your warranty valid, make sure you're getting regular oil changes and maintenance check-ups according to the manufacturer's recommended schedule-and hang on to those maintenance invoices. You never know when you may need them and they provide a solid service record when it comes time to sell the car.

And maybe it goes without saying, but if your engine stops running because your car hit a tree... well, that's not covered either. You'll need car insurance for that. Do your homework and check out Allstate's auto insurance options-as well as our 15 auto insurance discounts and ways to save.

Exploring an Extended or 3rd Party Warranty

Although a new car warranty probably comes with your car, the dealership may try to sell you a manufacturer's extended warranty as well. Extended warranties are designed to extend coverage even after your factory warranty expires.

Also, you can usually buy an extended warranty through a third party-an option if your manufacturer doesn't offer one, or if you're not happy with its coverage or cost.

Either way, you'll want to thoroughly compare your options when considering an extended warranty. Really determine what your maintenance needs are-especially how long you plan to keep the car and your driving habits.

Want Some Serious Protection?

Drivers who switch to Allstate save money on car insurance-safe drivers can save up to 45% or more-and they also get more protection.

Get a no-obligation quote, talk to your agent or call us at 1-800-ALLSTATE (255-7828) to see how we can help you save on car insurance.

Published: June 2011

The availability, qualifications and amounts of these discounts may vary from state to state. In addition, terms, conditions and exclusions not described above may apply, and total savings may vary depending on the coverages purchased. In some states, we may offer discounts that are not listed here. For more information regarding your eligibility for these savings opportunities, please contact your Allstate agent.

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