• How Damage Done Under Auto Warranties is Determined

    Auto warranty companies assess damage by determining what is covered in the auto policy, since different auto warranties have different types of coverage. As a policy holder, you should refer to your Warranty and Owner Assistance Information booklet to get complete details of the various inclusions and exclusions on your warranty. This is true regardless of whether the warranty is a manufacturer’s warranty or an extended warranty.

    How is Damage Determined under Auto Warranties?

    • The specifics of auto warranties differ, depending on various details such as the make, year and model of your vehicle, and whether your vehicle is a new or a used car.
    • Though certain things are covered by all warranties such as the engine, transmission, brakes, parts and labor, you must realize that consumables or what’s termed as ‘wear and tear’ items such as fan belts aren’t covered.
    • Auto warranties cover the costs of replacement or repair only if it’s confirmed that the damage hasn’t been caused by misuse, accidents or negligence.
    • Depending on the coverage offered by your auto warranty plan, you might not be able to fix auto scratches through your warranty company. If you’re covered and if you want to claim repairs despite the risk of increased premiums and the fact that there would be a deductible for the claim, you should contact the warranty company at once. You should also honestly state all the details of the events that led to the damage and provide pictures to support your claim. The more detailed your report, the greater are the chances of your claim being approved. It’s best to keep detailed records of all discussions with the auto warranty company through documents, and receipts.
    • The warranty companies usually assess the damage by referring to the inclusions and exclusions listed in the contract. Since damage caused by abuse or misuse isn’t covered, they will check for vehicle abuse. They will have the car inspected at the auto repair facility and rule out misuse such as use of the wrong lubricants. Any damage caused as result of such abuse, even if included in the contract, won’t be covered and the claim will be denied.
    • Similarly, if there is something wrong with the car, it’s best to stop using it and report the damage. If the car is used and gets overheated, repairs for any damage caused as a result of the overheating wouldn’t be approved even though such repairs aren’t excluded in the contract. The warranty company would easily identify the cause of the damage using the computerized systems available at their auto repair facility.
    • All extended warranties require you to keep to the maintenance schedule of the manufacturer. It’s thus advisable to keep all the records and receipts of such maintenance work done on your car in case your maintenance claims are questioned by the auto warranty company. Auto warranty companies can reject claims if they can prove that the damage is caused due to neglect.
    • Any modification of the vehicle in a manner not recommended by the vehicle manufacturer and consequent damage caused as a result of such modification isn’t covered under the contract.

    You should beware of all the details of your auto warranty contract and should ensure that you keep all records of maintenance and adhere to the requirements of the contract.