Skip to main content

Your car is one of your most valuable possessions. But unfortunately, vehicles break down, and that happens more often as they age, making maintenance costs rise. That’s when a car warranty comes in handy. Basically, a warranty is an automobile repair contract that limits the owner’s financial risk for a certain period. 

That means paying out of pocket when your vehicle needs repairs might not be necessary if you have a car warranty. However, not all are the same.

What do new car warranties cover?

A red 2004 Mini Cooper convertible travels on a country road
You’ll have peace of mind with a car warranty | National Motor Museum/Heritage Images/Getty Images

The damage that occurs during normal use of your car, which you cannot consider normal wear and tear, is what a car warranty covers. As such, your car warranty can cover defective parts with new or reconditioned parts at the discretion of the company behind your warranty, and you can also use it to cover labor costs. According to The Detroit Bureau, a car warranty will also take care of the following:

  • Transmission replacement costs if your car’s transmission fails during normal driving while your powertrain warranty is active.
  • Air conditioning replacement expenses if your vehicle’s air conditioning stops working while your bumper-to-bumper coverage is active.

7 types of new car warranties

Extended warranty

Once the manufacturer’s warranty expires, generally after three years or 36,000 miles, an extended warranty takes over, Kelley Blue Book explains. But you’ll have to pay extra for an extended warranty.

Comprehensive warranty

A comprehensive or bumper-to-bumper warranty covers new parts your car had when you acquired the vehicle

Hybrid and EV component warranty

Coverage for repairs to the electric motor, battery, and other unique hybrid or electric vehicle components falls under the hybrid and EV component warranty. Note that electric motors are subject to minor wear and tear, which is not the case for gasoline engines. The implication here is that electric motors require much less maintenance. It’s also worth noting that a hybrid or electric car’s battery can carry much of a vehicle’s value.

For that reason, replacing such a battery is among the costliest repairs, so coverage for that part is separate.


The powertrain warranty covers mechanical parts that move your car, whose lifespan is several years’ worth of driving. The duration of coverage, in this case, is longer than that of the comprehensive option.


Coverage for the components that limit your car’s emissions is under emissions warranty. Emissions warranties have complexities, and that is why they vary from state to state and warranty some parts for a shorter duration than others.

Restraint systems

This covers damage to the airbags and seat belts. The coverage can vary considerably among automakers.


Most vehicle coverage includes corrosion. The warranty pays to replace body panels that are completely rusted. However, lesser corrosion isn’t covered. 

Does a car warranty cover regularly scheduled maintenance?

It’s worth mentioning that warranties do not cover regularly scheduled maintenance. However, some manufacturers include a maintenance plan in the purchase price of a vehicle, while others offer optional maintenance packages at an extra charge.

Because warranties do not cover routine maintenance, failure to observe the maintenance schedule that a manufacturer recommends can void your automobile warranty.


Which Car Company Has the Best Warranty in 2021?