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    Should You Invest in Extended Warranties?

    March 06, 2017


    People fall in one camp or the other: either always buy extended warranties if available... or never buy extended warranties. What's the right answer? As with most things in life, the answer is, "It depends." Here are some factors to help you make the best decision.

    Many items you buy today for your trucks already have extended warranties with no extra cost or big, longs forms to fill out.

    It's always worth asking if the part you're replacing is covered under warranty. After all, asking is free, and you might find out that shock you bought has a two-year warranty, that brake chamber a three-year warranty, or that seat a seven-year warranty! These warranties are included with the purchase at no extra cost. All you need to do is ask and keep proof of purchase.

    Best practices:

    • Ask what the warranty period is when you buy a part.
    • Ask if that warranty includes labor.
    • Make a copy of your invoice, note the warranty, and keep it in a warranty folder in that truck.

    What about when you have to purchase the warranty? What should you do then?

    Well, that requires a bit of head-scratching. Most purchased warranty plans can be bought for a short period of time after you purchase the parts, giving you a few days to decide if needed. Again, ask if a warranty is available, what it covers, and how much it will cost. Then you get to decide what is best.

    Factors to include in your decision:

    • How much longer are you going to operate the vehicle?  This will allow you to help value both the cost and length of extended warranty you will buy. 
    • What is your experience with this part and the frequency of replacement?
    • Would it likely fail again in the extended warranty period? 
    • Will the future cost of replacement be significantly greater than the warranty cost?

    One big benefit to some extended warranties is labor being included even if you have self-installed the part. This could be a huge benefit if the part fails. You not only get the part covered, but also you can have the labor done by an authorized installer. This is beneficial in costs, time, and having the opportunity for a trained technician to make the repair--which may lead to some cost-saving suggestions during the repair.

    Note: This conversation is all about manufacturer or provider warranties. It is not intended to apply to warranty plans available from third-party providers. That is a whole ‘nother kettle of fish.

    As you can see there is not a “right” answer, but there are things to consider rather than always denying coverage. Asking is a free and best first step. Knowledge is power, and truckers like power.

    Also know that all TRP items carry a one-year warranty and many have extended warranties at no extra cost. Please ask us! We will be happy to tell you.