Extended Warranties – Are they worth it?

Just about any new purchase of technology comes with the option of an extended warranty. Yes, products do carry their own warranty from the manufacturer, but it often isn't all-inclusive and only a limited number of items are included.

In order to take advantage of the warranty the item must be shipped back to the manufacturer (usually at your own expense) and then, depending on the problem, your item may be returned a few weeks later. If it cannot be repaired you are issued a new product or a remanufactured product as a replacement.

Anything from a big screen television to a scientific calculator at the local office store can have an extended warranty plan available. You can be sure that if there is an extended warranty plan, your salesperson will mention it and give you the pricing options.

However, skipping over the extended plan could give you a little extra cash in your savings account.

An extended warranty is an added cost at the time of your purchase. You can choose the number of years that you want the coverage and the amount is due upfront.
Its main selling point is the savings and convenience that it can provide in the future if something goes wrong with your product. However, each warranty is different, so it is important to read through just what you are paying for.

The cost of the extended warranty is usually relative to the product. You are going to pay more for an extended warranty on that big screen television than you are the scientific calculator. Because of this, it is important to take a look at the extended warranty on a case-by-case basis.

Extended warranties that cover user damage as well as defects can be a great warranty to have. In some cases if you drop your product, lose a piece of your product, or even experience water damage to your product, the extended warranty will replace it free of charge.

Not all policies are like this and before you say yes to purchasing one, make sure you find out the specifics on user damage.

If you are purchasing products for children or younger adults, these types of extended warranties can really come in handy. The extended warranty is well worth the cost if you can get a new item after your child drops or breaks the first one.

In some cases the extended warranty only covers defects and problems caused by the product and its use. Most manufacturers offer their own warranty for at least a year or two if something were to happen.

However, an extended warranty is usually more lenient in what types of things are covered. The amount of time is also more than a traditional warranty.

If the extended warranty offers replacement instead of repair, this might also be something to consider. Remember that most of the time a manufacturer's warranty requires that you send in the product and wait for a technician to look at it. When it comes to your cell phone, your laptop, or even your tablet, you can't always be without it for several weeks. It may be worth the extra cost just to ensure that you always have something you can use.

Each situation is different, so be sure to look at what you are buying, how important it is and how much it costs. Each of these factors will help you determine whether or not an extended warranty is right for you.


written by: Les Roberts

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