Extended Electronics Warranty: Do You Really Need One?


Often extended warranties cost more than they’re worth, are never needed and don’t follow through when they are.

Unless you’re a fan of throwing money down the drain, purchasing an extended warranty—also known as a service contract—for your newest consumer electronic device probably isn’t for you. Here’s why.

Replacement costs less.

Typically, the cost to replace your vacuum cleaner, camcorder or digital camera will cost less than it will to purchase an extended warranty for that item.

Repairs can cost the same or less.

Sometimes the cost of a repair is equal to or less than the cost of the extended warranty. And products don’t often break within the extended warranty timeframe, if they break down at all. Your best bet is to buy a brand that is well known for its reliability.

Most products come with a standard warranty.

Standard warranties for electronics typically cover parts for one year and labor for 90 days. Often, a year is plenty of coverage.

Making a claim through an extended warranty can be frustrating.

The warranty you hold may not cover everything you think it does, which could leave you holding the bag when it comes time to make a claim. And even when it does cover the needed repair, the company holding the warranty decides who does the repair work. This means you’re on their timeline, their policies and their workmanship—which can often be lacking.

Or, you could find that the company holding your warranty went out of business, possibly even years ago. Not only will you have to cover the repair costs, but you’re also out of the money you spent for the warranty to begin with.

Your extended warranty may overlap the standard warranty.

Your extended warranty begins the day you purchase it. If your electronic device comes with a standard warranty, then your extended warranty is doubling your coverage—so, essentially a two-year extended policy is really only providing one year of additional coverage.

Other warranty programs may be available to you.

Before you purchase an extended warranty, check with the credit card you’re using to make the purchase or the store you’re buying it from. Credit card companies often offer additional warranty protection and some stores, like Costco, extend the manufacturer’s warranty of some items at no cost to you.

Check out Service Contracts: Should You Buy One for more information on extended warranties.

Source: ConsumerAffairs.com, CNET.com, ConsumerReports.org
Search All Articles
Related Articles
No Child Left Behind Increases Parents' Choices
Nclb_thHow No Child Left Behind provides educational choices
No Child Left Behind and Charter Schools
Apple_thHow Charter Schools work with the No Child Left Behind law
No Child Left Behind and School Safety
Books_thWhy No School Left Behind will make schools safer and more drug-free
Are You Ready for Earthquakes?
Areyouready_030_thHow to be better prepared in an Earthquake

Most Popular
First-Time Home Buyers: What To Do Before You Begin To Look
FamilysmHere are a few tips of how to be better prepared for the home-buying process.
Motivating and Recruiting Members
Recruit_thWays to motivate and recruit members for the Association
6 Steps To Create An HOA Board Resolution
BodsmCreate, write and approve a new HOA board resolution using these six steps
Super Director
SuperdirectorthumbHow many of us have experienced the Board member who wants to control all aspects of the association's operation


Zip Code Profiler

Neighborhoods, Home Values, Schools, City & State Data, Sex Offender Lists, more.

Instant Home Value!