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Find the Best Extended Auto Warranty Companies in Santa Barbara, CA

An extended auto warranty reduces out-of-pocket expenses due to breakdowns or malfunctions on cars that have outlasted the manufacturer’s warranty. We researched the best extended auto warranty in Santa Barbara to help you find the right coverage to keep your wheels rolling on the road.

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What is an extended auto warranty?

An extended auto warranty, sometimes called a vehicle service contract, is an optional plan that helps minimize the financial risk associated with car repairs. Most people get an extended auto warranty when their manufacturer’s warranty expires, but Santa Barbara residents can purchase extended coverage at any time, even if their vehicles have higher mileage.

Considering that California consistently ranks as one of the most expensive states for car repairs, an extended auto warranty in Santa Barbara helps to ease financial worries related to unpredictable mechanical failures and breakdowns.

Extended auto warranties are particularly advantageous in areas like Santa Barbara where lengthy commutes and stop-and-go traffic exacerbate wear and tear on your engine, brakes and transmission. The salty ocean air in Santa Barbara also contributes to corrosion and rust that make parts fail faster.

What does an extended auto warranty cover

Many extended warranties are similar to original factory warranties. Extended auto warranties pay for the cost of specific repairs during an agreed-upon period of time or mileage. Extended car warranty providers typically offer a choice of three to four plans with coverage ranging from only major systems and common repairs to nearly any malfunction or mechanical failure.

Powertrain warranty:

coverage for essential systems that keep your car moving

Bumper-to-bumper:

coverage for a more extensive list of components and systems

Engine Engine
Transmission Transmission
Transfer case (if equipped) Transfer case (if equipped)
Drive shaft Drive shaft
Differential Differential
N/A Electrical system
N/A Air conditioning
N/A Cooling
N/A Steering
N/A Seals and gaskets

Some extended warranties also include perks such as:

  • 24/7 roadside assistance
  • Gas delivery
  • Towing
  • Rental cars

It’s important to note that extended car warranties in Santa Barbara don’t cover everything that could happen to your car. For example, extended warranties do not cover damage from accidents, vandalism or natural disasters (your auto insurance policy covers those repairs). Extended warranties also don’t normally cover routine maintenance, such as oil changes, windshield wiper replacement and new tires.

How much does an extended warranty cost in Santa Barbara?

The cost of an extended auto warranty in Santa Barbara can range anywhere from several hundred to several thousand dollars. Cheaper warranties cover fewer parts and have more restrictive fine print. Coverage options vary widely, and numerous other factors determine the price of your plan, including:

  • Vehicle make and model
  • Vehicle age
  • Vehicle condition
  • Your driving habits
  • Length of contract

Similar to car insurance, you can choose extended car warranties with different deductibles, usually from $0 to $250. If you’re considering a service contract with a deductible, it’s important to find out if it will be charged on a per-visit or per-repair basis. Let’s say you have two repairs to be made on your car:

  • With a $100 per-visit deductible, you would pay $100.
  • With a $100 per-repair deductible, you would pay $200.

This makes a big difference in your out-of-pocket expenses, depending on how your garage bills the warranty provider.

When it comes to paying for an extended warranty in Santa Barbara, some people like to pay for the entire warranty upfront to ensure they’re always covered. Other people prefer to start with a down payment and spread the rest of the payments over six to 24 months. Choose a payment plan that suits your finances throughout the term of the warranty.

Are extended car warranties worth it?

An extended auto warranty could save you thousands of dollars, whether you need many small repairs over time or just one major repair. With flexible plans customized to your needs, extended warranties also:

  • Help you maintain the resale value of your car
  • Transfer to new owners if you sell your car
  • Provide perks like roadside assistance or rental car coverage

That being said, an extended car warranty can be expensive, doesn’t cover all repairs and may never actually help you. You have to weigh the odds of needing repairs and the cost of those repairs against the price of your coverage. It’s a good idea to research reliability ratings for your car’s make and model to predict how well the vehicle will hold up.

How to choose an extended auto warranty

While you can get an extended warranty through your local car dealership in Santa Barbara, independent car warranty providers usually offer more competitive pricing.

When purchasing an extended auto warranty, your goal is to get the cheapest policy that still covers the parts you’re most likely to need fixed. As with any major purchase, read reviews and shop around to get the best deal.

As you consider different extended auto warranties and contact providers, here are some questions to ask:

  • What is the deductible?
  • What is the claims process?
  • Who can perform the repairs?
  • Is there a waiting period before coverage kicks in?
  • Does an insurance company back the contract?

Most importantly, carefully read the fine print on your contract so you know what is covered, what is not and what your commitment is.

Extended Auto Warranty Reviews

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CARCHEX

As one of the largest providers of extended auto warranties, CARCHEX provides comprehensive, insurance-backed coverage at an affordable price. In addition to covering repairs, CARCHEX care coverage includes 24/7 roadside assistance, towing, rental cars and gas delivery. Local reviewers say the plans are a great value and the company’s representatives are both knowledgeable and helpful.

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