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A beginners guide to car warranty: what doesn’t it cover?

13 December 2023

Written by Simon England

|  5 Minutes

Extended warranty policies might not have the best reputation – most are costly with low payout rates, or don’t offer the coverage you really need. You could even find that when you need to make a claim, your component cover differs from what you initially thought or the claims team is unsupportive. It’s time to change that with ALA Car Warranty.

We have recently developed our own warranty coverage to provide our customers with reliability and value for money – it’s why we’re rated 4.9 stars on Trustpilot.

As with all insurance products, there are some limitations, but we pride ourselves on being transparent about what we cover and what we don’t. Discover all there is to know about car warranty coverage

What doesn’t car warranty cover?

Extended car warranty isn’t there to replace routine vehicle maintenance but instead protect you in the event of sudden and unexpected failures. Following your manufacturer’s guidelines on vehicle servicing and maintenance keeps your car in good condition, and your used car warranty can be there for the unexpected.

Ensure you’re using extended warranty in the right way. These are the general exclusions on ALA warranty:

  • The repair cost for damage that occured before your policy start date
  • The Repair cost for parts that failed due to negligence or improper maintenance
  • If the manufacturer’s original warranty covers the vehicle
  • Accidental damage resulting from extreme weather conditions or collision
  • Costs exceeding your claim limit
  • The Repair cost for any part not listed under named component cover, or specifically excluded by the policy
  • The repair cost where failure is due to wear and tear (excluded under Gold & Silver packages and ceases on Platinum once car reaches 8 years old or 80,000 miles)

Which parts does ALA warranty not cover?

Car warranties usually cover the most crucial components of your vehicle, the most expensive to fix, or the ones prone to failure. You won’t find an extended warranty provider covering consumables, parts which are not regarded as mechanical or electrical, or cosmetic damage.

While covering all car parts is impossible, our Platinum level cover is the most comprehensive with the fewest excluded components. As a general rule of thumb, car warranties (including those from ALA) don’t cover the following:

  • Wiring
  • Pipes
  • Air filters/oil filters
  • Software
  • Third-party/modified components
  • Batteries
  • Spark plugs/Glow plugs
  • Gaiters
  • Bushes
  • Consumables, e.g., engine oil, lightbulbs, brake pads, brake discs.
  • Cosmetic, e.g., bodywork, paintwork, handles, upholstery
  • Locking and security

Check our policy wordings for Silver, Gold and Platinum extended warranties for a full list of excluded items.

Does warranty cover car batteries?

Extended car warranties sometimes cover batteries on separate policies; this is especially important to consider if you own an electric vehicle, hybrid or plug-in hybrid. If so, you’ll want an extended electric vehicle or battery warranty. Please note that ALA doesn’t cover car batteries.

If you want to cover your car battery, but your warranty provider doesn’t offer this, you can choose a separate provider for this additional coverage.

close up view of a steering wheel with electronics behind

Common misconceptions about extended warranty coverage

There’s a whole host of presumptions and misconceptions when it comes to extended warranties. ALA’s aim is to reassure you that we’ll have your back in the event of an unexpected repair cost. Have you ever made the following assumptions about car warranty cover?

Extended warranties never cover wear & tear

Imagine the frustration of buying extended warranty and regularly servicing your car, for wear and tear to invalidate your claim. With ALA’s Platinum policy, you can avoid this and have even less to worry about when making a claim. If you choose the Platinum package, you should be aware of the 80,000 miles or 8 year cap on this wear & tear cover.

Extended warranty never covers diagnostics

Unexpected repair costs can easily accumulate, especially for new cars. Even before the repairs start, you could incur diagnostics charges. Where there’s a successful claim, ALA covers up to £50 (or one hour of labour) for diagnostics to minimise your expense. Excluded on Silver plans.

Extended warranties don’t cover electrics

Electrical systems in modern vehicles are extensive, but some conventional vehicle warranties overlook them. ALA covers a wide range of electrical components, including alternators, starter motors, windscreen wiper motors, horn units, window motors & switches on our Silver policies alone, with much more coverage on Gold and Platinum. Compare coverage for electrical components here.

Extended warranty doesn’t cover suspension springs

Extended warranty customers often complain that their provider classifies suspension coils under consumables – that’s not the case with us. All ALA policies cover coil springs if they fail unexpectedly. You can also get wear & tear coverage on these for Platinum policyholders.

Extended warranty doesn’t cover brakes

Brakes get plenty of wear and tear, so many warranty providers choose not to cover them at all. Aside from friction pads and brake discs, which need changing regularly, we cover the majority of your brake components, even on Silver policies. Platinum policies are the most comprehensive and cover wear & tear up to 80,000 miles or 8 years.

Extended warranty doesn’t cover the clutch

Similarly to brakes, the clutch is exposed to lots of friction. We cover most components as standard, including the release thrust bearing, centre plate, pressure plate, and master and slave cylinders. Platinum policies cover all clutch parts.

Extended warranty never covers the catalytic converter

Many manufacturers are doing their bit for the environment while helping you to meet new emission requirements. We’ve added coverage of factory-fitted catalytic converters for Platinum policies, so you can be at ease driving through ULEZ zones.

There are always costs when making a car warranty claim

When you need to use your car warranty, give us a call, drop your vehicle off at an approved repairer and provide your warranty details and administrator contact details. You could have nothing to pay unless your repairs exceed your policy limits and named component cover. You won’t even pay any excess.

Choosing the right warranty cover with ALA

Our three levels of extended warranty are useful for a range of customer budgets. Our Silver policies offer great protection and unbeatable value. Where eligible you might choose Gold or Platinum warranties to cover a wider range of possible faults. Compare our policies below or read our full warranty comparison.

Silver

Gold

Platinum

Max. vehicle age

16 years

12 years

8 years

Max vehicle mileage

150,000

100,000

80,000

Max vehicle purchase price

No limit

No limit

No limit

Max vehicle engine power

5000cc

5000cc

5000cc

Diagnostics

None

Up to £50 or 1 hour

Up to £50 or 1 hour

Wear & Tear

None

None

Included

EV coverage

Yes

Yes

Yes

Enjoy the reassurance that we’ve got you covered. Build an ALA car Warranty quote in seconds.

If your car’s existing warranty has expired, you’re covered if the unforeseeable happens. We even cover electric vehicles as standard, with no add-ons necessary. Moreover, purchasing car warranties needn’t break the bank. Price up our affordable policies, or speak to a member of our in-house team for support on choosing the right package.