It can be a toss of the coin, whether or not these extended plans are worth while. My dh and I finally decided that $500 was the cut off point. If we spend less than $500, then we would replace the item and not pay for a repair. If we spent more, we would buy the warranty and repair. So far it has generally been a good thing. Just this past week, our Bosch dishwasher went down for its second repair. The first was during the 1 year warranty, and now this one about 8 months out. The extended plan cost $146 for the 4 years (and it included our then new range). The repair on the Bosch is $245. This time we won as it is totally covered.
Many states have implied warranty statutes, which trump the express warranty (ie the written warranty on a particular item); these give you specific rights as a consumer, depending on your state. For example, in my state, any NEW consumer good (personal, not business equipment) besides a used car--from blenders to refrigerators to boats--is covered for four years from the date of purchase, regardless of what the manufacturer's or retailer's written warranty states. So if I buy a cordless drill with a 1 year manufacturer's warranty and it dies 3 1/2 years later, the retailer or the manufacturer has to repair or replace it free of charge. That is the cost of doing business with citizens of my consumer-friendly state. Course, the businesses are still allowed to sell protection plans and most people don't even know implied warranty laws exist, and that's probably the deal the state struck with the retailers: we won't advertize the existence of the laws and you respect them when a saavy citizen asserts their rights under them.
So find out if your state has implied warranty laws. That's the best way to make a decision about whether or not to buy a protection plan.
Absolutely DO NOT buy Sears warranty. Most recently, on two service calls placed under both original warranty and purchased extended warranty on our washing machine, service was not available for 10 to 14 days. Service had to be obtained elsewhere as we could not wait two weeks for service.
Prior to that, we had purchased warranty on the Sears garden tractor. They refused to fix the problems with it and DH had to rebuild the transmission after their extended warranty programme expired.
Provincial law states that hot water heaters must be warranted for I believe it is five years. Sears offers one year warranty only here on their hot water heaters. They then tried to get me to buy extended warranty...I had to explain the finer points of the legislation to them.
Take the gamble and go without. That way you are open to contact ANYBODY to do the repairs.
My hubby bought one on our front loader washer. In the first year we had to have a door latch replaced which was completly covered and then we locked it, didnt even know it could be locked. They repaired the door latch which alone cost more than the extended warranty by the time parts and labor. They also came and unlocked the lock and we werent charged for that either even though it was our mistake. Both times we have somebody here within 2 days.
well after being bilked out of nearly $800 on air compressors at Home depot (their warantees are worth a thing) I have a porter cable and a ridgid compressor that bit the dust after 16 hours .
I went and bought a 2 year walk in exchange policy on the 6.5 HP gas engine at harbor freight
I have purchased them on major buys and glad too since when the manufacturers warranty ran out and the item broke, it was fixed or replaced for free!
I noticed most manufacturers warranties are not that long anymore. 1 year on a washing machine isn't enough.
I buy the extended when its a higher ticket item and the manufacturers warranty isn't for several years and unlimited!
Limited warranties can cost a lot even shortly after purchase. Some don't ever include labor...a big cost.
Some cover labor and parts but only for a short time.
Some exclude certain parts like the motor!
Some want you to send the item to them, another potential big cost and higher risk if something happens in transit.
You have to read and compare then choose if its a benefit of protection to buy an extended warranty.
"We spend money we don't have on things we don't need to create impressions that won't last on people we don't care about."
About the only thing I buy a warranty for is expensive laptop computers and rear projection televisions.
The only ones I buy for notebook computers is the one that also pays for accidental damage like screen breakage. That can really save your bacon. If it's a cheap laptop under 500 or 800 I wouldn't bother but when it's a 2000 dollar notebook I spend the extra hundred or two and get the protection. It has saved me a bunch of money on a couple of occasions.
Rear projection TVs can be a bit fragile and cranky so I get the extended warranty with those too as long as it covers bulbs. I didn't renew mine last time even though it was only 100 bucks or so for 2 or 3 years. Sure enough a few months later a board goes out. Now it costs more to fix than it's worth. If I'd have kept the warranty they'd have fixed it for free. Only good thing is now I have an excuse to go buy a new TV better than the one i had.
As a general rule though extended warranties are a losing proposition. They're big money makers for the stores that sell them though which is why they push them so hard. I went to best buy a year or so ago and bought a cheap DVD player. 100 bucks or something. They wanted me to buy an extended warranty with it. Not hardly. With a few exceptions, once a piece of electronic gear has had a chance to go through a few operating cycles and get heated up and cooled down a few times it's gonna last pretty much until obsolescence.
I've had people tell em places have even pushed extended warranties on shoes and clothing they've bought.
In early 2003 we bought a front load washer, from Lowes for about $700, and bought the 10 year extended warranty. Within the 1st year the door latch had to be replaced.
At about the 14 month period the pump went out. Shortly before that happened we had moved here to the middle of nowhere where the closest service person is 60 miles away (they actually had 2 service people refuse to come and they were only 45 miles away). Got this fixed and about 2 months later the pump went out again.
This time I called and told them I didn't want the same guy out that had fixed it the last time (long story). After the warranty people (not Lowes) refused to acknowledge that request I called Lowes in Wilkesboro and talked to customer service who then put me on a 3-way call with the manager of our nearest Lowes store (85 miles). They both listened and then told me to bring the old washer back and get a new one. We took it straight up there and I ended up with a brand new washer, the pedestal (which I didn't have before) and a NEW 10 year warranty plus they gave me back $$ (something like $6-8) because the washer had been discontinued and was marked down.
The original warranty cost about $150. It paid for itself on the 1st service call and I still have 6 years left on this new washer - which incidentally hasn't had a single problem in 4 years.
In March this year we bought a $2500 Maytag refrigerator from Lowes for $1150 and bought the extended warranty. Hope to not have to use it but I trust Lowes to make it right if we do.
We've never purchased an extended warranty. Very seldom do they actually pay. When a Sears salesperson was pushing way too hard for us to buy their extended warranty, my dh said that if their product was that bad we'd better not buy it and we went elsewhere. We have had Sears appliances since 1960's. They have always been excellent products. However, without fail their service has always been terrible. We no longer own any Sears appliances except for our 32 year old deep freeze.
This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
I thought of one other extended warranty purchase that WAS with something we bought from Sears.
We bought one of those $1200 elliptical machines several years ago. About a month after the regular warranty expired the LED display stopped working. We called and the warranty people sent the part and the repair man came to the house within a couple of days and fixed the machine. He also greased and tightened parts while he was there.
Last year when we moved the machine was in storage for several months. When we got it put back in the house it wouldn't come on. Called and the warranty people sent the part and again, the repair people were there within just a couple of days to fix the problem.
In the first case, the cost of the house call would have been more than the extended warranty (they came from Odessa, 130 miles away). In the second case, it was 50 miles. The warranty paid for itself with the first call.
I think you go by the cost and just make your decision based on the product and the factors for your individual purchase. In our case, because we are so rural, house calls to repair machines can be more than the cost of the extended warranty. It makes sense on big ticket items.