An extended warranty can help you protect your finances from expensive unexpected car repairs. But knowing which companies provide the best coverage at the best prices can be tough. Our team researched the industry’s top providers to find the best extended car warranty on the market.
We compared pricing, warranty coverage options, warranty reviews and even the fine print to help you get a better idea of which extended warranty company is right for you.
What is an Extended Car Warranty?
An extended car warranty covers repair costs and replacements to certain vehicle components after a mechanical breakdown. Also called a vehicle service contract, this plan takes effect after your factory warranty has expired. For many, these plans can help keep auto repair costs manageable and help drivers maintain peace of mind on the road.
The last time you purchased a new car from a dealership, you may have been offered an extended auto warranty as a way of extended the coverage you got with your manufacturer’s warranty. You can purchase coverage from your dealer or from one of the nation’s top third-party extended warranty companies. With most of these plans, you can either pay for the entire policy upfront or break it up into monthly payments.
Third-party providers offer many benefits to car owners, including longer coverage terms, lower prices, and the flexibility to take your car to any authorized auto repair shop. However, it’s important to know all of the fine print and details of your vehicle protection plan, including a list of covered repairs. Otherwise, you could end up with an unexpected repair bill for something your extended car warranty plan doesn’t cover.
Best Extended Car Warranty Comparison
We performed an in-depth analysis of the industry’s most popular extended warranty companies and ranked each company in the following categories: reputation, coverage, warranty cost, transparency, and customer experience.
Based on our findings, these are the best extended car warranty companies in 2021.
|Best Extended Car Warranty||Superlative||Overall Rating||Coverage||Warranty Cost|
|#1 Endurance||Best Provider||9.6 / 10.0||10.0||9.0|
|#2 CARCHEX||Best for High-Mileage Cars||9.4 / 10.0||9.5||9.0|
|#3 CarShield||Most Affordable||9.0 / 10.0||9.5||10.0|
|#4 Protect My Car||Best Long-Term Financing||8.7 / 10.0||9.0||8.0|
|#5 autopom!||Runner-Up||8.5 / 10.0||8.0||8.0|
|#6 Liberty Bell Auto Protect||Runner-Up||8.4 / 10.0||8.5||8.0|
#1 Endurance: Best Provider
Endurance Warranty Services, LLC has 14 years of experience – fewer than many competitors – but it has already built a strong reputation for customer service. As a direct provider of extended car warranties, Endurance takes care of customers from beginning to end. It’s our experts’ top pick for the industry’s best extended car warranty.
Direct provider (no middleman)
Friendly customer service
Personal assistant and other perks through Endurance Elite Membership
Generous roadside assistance, including towing and other emergency services
Not accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
60-day waiting period for some plans
The most obvious distinction between Endurance and other third-party auto warranty companies is it is the direct administrator of its plans. Other companies market plans that are administered by a separate company. Endurance offers six transferable/cancelable plans — ranging from comprehensive coverage to powertrain-only protection — to fit your individual needs:
- Supreme: Exclusionary coverage
- Superior: Highest stated-component coverage
- Secure Plus: Shortest waiting period (30 days/1,000 miles)
- Secure: Basic, affordable powertrain coverage
- Select Premier: For high-mileage vehicles (up to 200,000+ miles)
- EnduranceAdvantage™: Combines mechanical breakdown coverage with routine maintenance items, including oil changes, engine diagnostics and brake pad replacements
In addition to roadside assistance, extended auto warranty contracts include the one-year Endurance Elite Membership service, which offers perks like merchant discounts, a personal concierge and ID theft services.
Endurance prices are competitive with other popular extended warranty companies. The best way to find out how much each Endurance plan will cost you is to reach out for a quote.
Read our head-to-head comparison of Endurance vs. CARCHEX.
#2 CARCHEX: Best for High-Mileage Cars
CARCHEX has been in the car warranty industry for more than 20 years. The company’s motto reads, “Customer experience above all,” and it boasts a high customer satisfaction rating on the BBB and other review sites.
Knowledgeable customer service representatives
Large network of authorized repair facilities
Many industry endorsements and partnerships
No-Haggle, Low-Price, Everyday Guarantee™
Limited coverage for luxury vehicles
Exclusionary coverage not as comprehensive as other warranties
Additional charges for hybrid/electric vehicles
CARCHEX markets service plans backed by insurance carriers with A and A+ ratings. Whether you’re looking for a basic powertrain warranty or a bumper-to-bumper warranty, CARCHEX offers five coverage levels:
- Titanium: Exclusionary coverage for most of your car’s systems and components
- Platinum: High-level stated-component coverage, including your car’s electrical components
- Gold: Covers all major systems and best suited for high-mileage vehicles
- Silver: Offers coverage only for your most essential systems
- Bronze: Protects your car’s powertrain components like the engine, drive axle and transmission.
Plans cover new vehicles and used vehicles over 150,000 miles, but do not expect your Porsche or exotic vehicle to have very many coverage options. Though, we were impressed that some used cars can be covered for up to 10 years old or 250,000 miles.
Compared to the other best extended warranty companies on our list, CARCHEX uses its buying power to find competitive rates for customers. CARCHEX touts its No-Haggle, Low-Price, Everyday Guarantee™ and offers contracts from a network of administrators. Many vehicle warranty plans come with deductibles as low as $0.
If you’d like to learn more about this provider, read our in-depth CARCHEX review.
If you’d like to see how the top two providers in our study stack up against each other, check out our head-to-head comparison of Endurance vs. CARCHEX.
#3 CarShield: Most Affordable
CarShield is a company commonly seen in radio and television ads. Upon closer review, we found it to have some of the best extended auto warranty plans in the industry at low prices
High-tech and specialty vehicle coverage plans
Allows repairs at your dealer or any mechanic certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence
Mixed customer reviews
Not all contracts are transferable
CarShield offers more coverage tiers than competitors. Here are their warranty options:
- New Car Diamond: Bumper-to-bumper exclusionary coverage
- Platinum: Covers the engine, transmission, air conditioning, electrical system and more
- Gold: Mid-level coverage for some of your vehicle’s essential components and some accessory parts
- Silver: No-frills powertrain coverage
- Aluminum: Covers many of your car’s electronic and computer-related parts
- Motorcycle and ATV: Covers motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles
CarShield markets itself as an affordable option for extended car warranties. Plans with low deductibles or no deductible are available, and customers won’t have to pay for costs other than their deductible. To learn more about what these warranties cover and what their costs are, check out our in-depth CarShield review.
#4 Protect My Car: Best Long-Term Financing
Protect My Car has offered vehicle service contracts for 15 years. Rounding out our top four best extended car warranty providers, here are some helpful pros and cons about Protect My Car to help you make a more informed decision about your extended warranty.
Covers cars up to 10 years old
Extensive coverage with all plans
High customer satisfaction rating
Some plans have no deductible
Military and student discounts
Long payment plan terms
Only three plan options (no bumper-to-bumper or basic powertrain plan)
Plans not available in all states
With Protect My Car, you have the choice between an extended auto warranty and an Ambassador maintenance plan. If you opt for an extended warranty, there are three levels of coverage – which isn’t as many as our other top providers.
- Supreme: This plan is Protect My Car’s highest level of coverage. However, it’s stated coverage, so it’s not going to cover as many things as a bumper-to-bumper warranty. Most systems are covered though, such as turbochargers and high-tech equipment (optional).
- Select: The Select plan covers everything the Supreme plan covers except for turbochargers and high-tech equipment. It’s also a great option for cars with over 50,000 miles.
- Driveline: This “powertrain plus” plan covers the basic essentials, plus a few major systems like the air conditioning and cooling system. It’s available for cars that have more than 80,000 miles and are between four and 10 years old.
The Protect My Car Ambassador maintenance plans are a hybrid between prepaid maintenance and an extended warranty. Repairs are covered, but only up to a certain percentage. You also get some free maintenance, like three oil changes and two tire rotations per year. You similarly have three plan options here: Ambassador Elite, Ambassador Pro and Ambassador Platinum. Almost any car can be covered by an Ambassador plan. That makes it a good option for older cars.
Protect My Car has payment terms from 36 to 48 months, so plans can be affordable on a monthly basis. The deductible is generally $100 for visits to the repair shop. If you’re not sure about your decision to purchase an extended car warranty, it’s good to know that Protect My Car offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
We took a closer look at the provider in our Protect My Car review, where you can learn more detailed information about coverage, pricing and reviews.
Don’t be fooled by this company’s age. Even though autopom! is only 10 years old, it has some of the highest customer service ratings on our list. If you are a California resident, then autopom! is one of the best extended car warranty providers catering to California vehicle service contract regulations.
Excellent claims servicing
Quick customer service
Plans specifically for California customers
Coverage up to 150,000 miles
Lack of coverage for some luxury vehicles
Runner-Up: Liberty Bell Auto Protect
Our second and final runner-up, Liberty Bell Auto Protect has also been in business for 10 years and has high ratings from industry experts.
Informative, low-pressure sales representatives
Quick claims and repair process
Coverage for vehicles up to 140,000 miles
No basic powertrain warranty
No California coverage
Only three plans
What Should You Look for in an Extended Car Warranty?
Here are a few quick questions to ask as you start shopping for auto warranties:
- Who backs the warranty? Is it backed by a car insurance company that can ensure claims are paid?
- What are your responsibilities? What kind of regular maintenance is required under the contract?
- How are claims handled? Do you have to pay the repair facility upfront? Can you choose your own repair facility?
- What is not covered? Will a claim be denied if a covered part is damaged by an uncovered part?
- Are you being pressured to buy? Are you able to compare multiple offers at once?
Consider reaching out to some of the leading extended car warranty providers on the market to get free quotes. Here’s how 12 of the most popular companies stack up to one another:
- #1 Endurance: 9.6 / 10.0
- #2 CARCHEX: 9.4 / 10.0
- #3 CarShield: 9.0 / 10.0
- #4 Protect My Car: 8.7 / 10.0
- #5 autopom!: 8.5 / 10.0
- #6 Liberty Bell Auto Protect: 8.4 / 10.0
- #7 ForeverCar: 8.3 / 10.0
- #8 Concord Auto Protect: 7.9 / 10.0
- #9 Infinite Auto Protection: 7.4 / 10.0
- #10 AA Auto Protection: 7.4 / 10.0
- #11 Zurich Insurance Group: 6.7 / 10.0
- #12 AutoAssure: 6.2 / 10.0
What to Expect When You Get an Extended Auto Warranty Quote
When you reach out to an extended car warranty company by phone or online, you’ll speak to a member of that provider’s team. Normally, they will ask you questions about your location and car (make, model, year, mileage, etc.). These factors determine what plans you’re eligible for, as well as your price estimate. They should also be able to answer any questions you have about the coverage, claims process or auto warranties in general.
It may be a red flag if you’re not impressed with the customer service on this initial phone call. This is one reason we recommend calling around and getting several quotes. You’ll also be able to compare prices and negotiate for the best extended car warranty price.
FAQ: Best Extended Car Warranty
Who has the best automotive extended warranty?
In our research into the best extended car warranty companies, our experts picked Endurance as the best overall provider.
Is it worth to take out an extended warranty on a car?
It depends. While it’s possible that your extended car warranty cost could exceed repair costs, service plans protect you from sudden, unexpected major expenses. Many car owners also consider the peace of mind a protection plan offers worth the money.
How much is an extended car warranty?
Extended car warranty companies and manufacturer’s have wide ranges of coverage options. Some plans cover only the drive axle and other critical components while others offer full coverage. Plans also range in length. You can cover your vehicle for one year, three years, five years, or even 10 years, depending on the company. Your price will vary greatly.