We’ve all heard the term “bumper-to-bumper” warranty, but what does it actually mean? Can you really get bumper-to-bumper coverage in an extended warranty? We get the general idea – the warranty covers your car from bumper to bumper. But does it really cover everything that could possibly go wrong with your car? How do you know what you’re actually getting if you buy an extended vehicle warranty that the sales rep claims to be  “bumper-to-bumper?”

I understand the confusion! Truly the only warranty that comes close to being bumper-to-bumper is the manufacturer’s original factory warranty.  Even then there can be exceptions. Extended warranties that are sold by dealerships and vehicle protection plans sold by third parties like autopom! fall into two basic types – exclusionary and stated component.  

Exclusionary Plan

An exclusionary protection plan names the components that are excluded.  Everything else on the vehicle is covered per the terms of the contract.  This type is the most comparable to the manufacturer’s original warranty, but it is really a far stretch to refer to it as bumper-to-bumper because there are many exclusions that would be covered under the factory such as shocks, belts hoses, light bulbs, batteries, emissions, airbags, catalytic converter, and others.

Stated Component Plan

A stated component (also called named component) plan lists the components that are included. Stated component plans typically come in three levels – high-level, mid-level and powertrain, but can sometimes be a hybrid of these three.  

How to Tell the Difference

When comparing plans from different companies, be sure to establish up front which type of plan you’re comparing.  Is it an exclusionary or stated component? Ask your sales rep. Once you have established the type, you will be able to compare apples-to-apples. If it is the exclusionary type, focus on comparing the excluded components in each plan. If it is the stated component type, focus on comparing the components that the contract lists as being covered.  Be sure to read and compare other terms and conditions in the contracts as well.

The levels of coverage differ greatly among companies.  What differs even more is the way in which the different coverage plans are described.  If the sales rep claims the coverage is bumper-to-bumper, then my advice is to kindly thank the salesperson and move on to another company.  They either don’t know what their plans cover, or they are misrepresenting the coverage.

Now that you’re aware that a bumper-to-bumper extended warranty or vehicle protection plan doesn’t really exist, you can make some informed decisions about protecting your vehicle. If your vehicle’s factory warranty has already expired or is about to, I hope you will find the information in this article helpful in your search for an extended vehicle warranty or vehicle protection plan.

To learn more, research the available options for extended protection. autopom! would welcome the chance to give you more information on vehicle protection plans, plus a free quote. Contact us today!