Auto Loans

Endurance Auto Warranty Review

An extended warranty is also known as a vehicle service contract (VSC), because the warranty provider promises to service the vehicle if something breaks, paying for all or part of whatever parts and labor are needed to fix the car. The idea is that you pay several dollars a month now so that if, say, your transmission goes out, you won’t have to pay thousands later.

Not all VSCs are created equally. Don’t let a dealership talk you into getting one without doing your own research — some extended warranty companies have horrible reputations. Review and accreditation agencies like the Better Business Bureau could give you an idea of whether a VSC company keeps its promises in good faith.

Here we’ll review Endurance Auto Warranty: What it is, how it’s rated, what it offers, its pros and cons, and how much it may cost.

About Endurance Auto Warranty
What does it offer?
What we like about the Endurance Auto Warranty
Drawbacks of the Endurance Auto Warranty
The fine print
How much does an Endurance Auto Warranty cost?
Factors to consider

About Endurance Auto Warranty

Endurance Auto Warranty was established in 2006 and is based in Northbrook, Ill. It’s a private company, so we can’t see all of the information about it. However, it is accredited by Consumer Affairs, is a Verified Safe Business™ by Ripoff Report, received a gold-level certification from an audit by the Vehicle Protection Association and is rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau with 598 positive reviews. It was also a finalist for the 2015 American Business Awards for customer service and for company of the year.

The direct-to-consumer extended warranty industry hasn’t had the greatest reputation in the past with some companies being vague about what they cover on the contract and then not covering repairs when it comes to it. Jordan Batt, founder and CEO of Endurance wants to make Endurance a major brand name in the industry to change this: “We want to be the place the consumer can trust.”

What does it offer?

Endurance Auto Warranty offers four types of warranty coverage on most vehicles up to 10 model years and 150,000 miles. It has 24/7 roadside assistance in the U.S. and Canada, as well as trip interruption insurance and reimbursement for renting a vehicle while your car is being repaired.

“Endurance tries to take it a step above just covering repairs,” said Batt. “We act as a liason for the customers, calling the [repair] shop, handling the process and haggling over price to take the stress off the customer.”

What coverages does it provide?

Secure: This only covers the engine, transmission and drive axle assembly. These are usually the parts that are the most expensive to fix but the least likely to break. If the vehicle has a factory-installed turbocharger, it is considered covered as part of the engine.

Supreme: This is colloquially referred to as “bumper-to-bumper” coverage. It covers the stuff needed to keep your vehicle moving forward, including the engine and transmission, as well as things for your comfort such as window switches and the AC.

Select Premiere: This is like the supreme coverage, but for high-mileage vehicles (a high-mileage vehicle is over the manufacturer base warranty).

Superior: This is the highest level of coverage, promising to pay for the repair of the most parts on the car compared to other Endurance coverages. You may also add optional high-tech coverage to the Superior warranty, which covers things such as the backup camera, sensors/perimeter warning, video system and display screen, and GPS/NAV systems.

There are additional add-on coverages available for commercial, modified and hybrid vehicles. There may be surcharges for each type.

  • Commercial use option: Vehicles used for farming, delivery of goods, snow removal and more may be eligible for this coverage.
  • Tire modification and body or suspension lift option: You could get warranty coverage for your vehicle even if it is lifted, as long as it does not exceed four inches and is allowed by the lift kit from the manufacturer.
  • Hybrid vehicle option: This covers electric motors and components, including generators, power controller, electric AC compressor and the inverter assembly. It does not include the batteries.

Claims

You or the repair facility must call Endurance to authorize the repairs before they’re done. Once authorized, Endurance pays for the auto repairs directly. This way, you don’t have to pay for it upfront and wait on a reimbursement check.

The standard deductible is $100, but can go down to $0.

Repairs and service

Repairs have to be done by a mechanic licensed by ASE (Automotive Service Excellence). It’s likely that any auto repair shop you go to will have an ASE certified person, whether you go to a dealership or an independent mechanic. There are more than 300,000 ASE certified mechanics in the U.S.

What we like about the Endurance Auto Warranty

  • Multiple business review sites rate Endurance Auto Warranty highly.
  • If your car has to be serviced multiple times to complete one repair, you only pay the deductible once (if you have one).
  • Endurance pays for the cost of your auto repairs directly; you don’t have to pay for it and then wait for reimbursement.
  • If you decide to finance the warranty, Endurance has no-fee financing.

Drawbacks of the Endurance Auto Warranty

Car rental limits. The reimbursement for car rental (or public transportation) while your vehicle is being repaired is limited to a maximum of $30 a day, $150 per breakdown — that comes to about five days rental for a smaller sedan or hatchback. So if your car will be in the shop for over a week and/or you happen to need a larger car, you may need to come up with a couple hundred dollars out of pocket for a rental.

Electronic coverage. If you’d like to cover your car’s technology, such as backup cameras, blind spot sensors and display screens, you’ll have to get the highest coverage plan and add the high tech option to it. Even with the highest coverage plan and high tech option, coverage is limited to $1,000, or does not include, electronic features such as the radio, transmitting and receiving devices, voice recognition systems and emission sensors.

The fine print

Vehicle maintenance.

You have to keep up with your car’s maintenance for the warranty to be valid. So if you don’t change your car’s oil and the engine freezes up, shuts down and becomes just a block of metal, Endurance is not going to buy you another engine. You have to follow the manufacturer recommended maintenance for your car and keep the receipts showing that you did. If you do your vehicle maintenance yourself, you have to keep the receipts showing you bought the supplies.

Things not covered.

For all plans, the warranty doesn’t cover basic things that wear out and need to be replaced over time, such as wiper blades, brake pads and drive belts. It also doesn’t cover upholstery, carpet, paint or anything that would be covered by auto insurance such as collision damage.

In a common sense thread, it also doesn’t cover any aftermarket alterations (or damages from such alterations). So if you decide to jack up your truck beyond what the manufacturer recommends and have four-foot-tall wheels on it, don’t expect Endurance to pay for any suspension issues.

Waiting period.

Warranty coverage begins 30 days and 1,000 miles after you sign the contract, whichever comes last; this is common for extended warranties.

Cancellation.

You can cancel an Endurance Auto Warranty within 30 days of getting it (if you haven’t used it within that time) for an entire refund. Any cancellation made after 30 days will be refunded on a pro-rata basis, less an administrative fee of $50 and less the total amount of all authorized claims.

Repair parts.

Repairs may be made with used, remanufactured, OEM (original equipment manufacturer) and non-OEM parts. OEM parts are made by a brand of car company, such as a Ford part for a Ford truck or a Honda part for a Honda car. A non-OEM part is one made by a third-party company: one which doesn’t make cars, but does make car parts.

Arbitration.

You also agree to go to arbitration relating to any controversy or claim relating to the warranty contract.

Exclusions.

If your car is a gray market vehicle, meaning it was not meant for sale in the U.S., it’s probably not eligible for an extended warranty. It’s also not eligible if it has a rebuilt or salvage title.

Limit of liability.

If the total of repairs is going to cost more than the vehicle is worth, then it’s not worth fixing. Endurance will pay up to the lessor either the average trade-in value (as determined by NADA Guides) or the purchase price of the car.

How much does an Endurance Auto Warranty cost?

Cost varies widely depending on the vehicle and the coverage you want, but Endurance prices are typically lower than what you can buy at the dealership, because buying directly from the warranty company cuts out the middleman. The conventional wisdom is that a more expensive vehicle will also have a more expensive warranty.

“The three big factors that go into cost are the class, age and mileage of the vehicle,” Batt said. All three factors help determine how likely it is that a vehicle will need a repair (or multiple repairs) and how much that will probably cost.

If a vehicle is categorized as class one, it’s relatively easy and/or inexpensive to fix. A Honda Civic is an example of a class one vehicle. If it’s a class nine vehicle, it will probably generate a much larger repair bill. A BMW 9 Series turbo is an example of a class nine vehicle. The higher the class, the older a car and/or the more miles it has, the more likely it is to require an expensive repair, resulting in a more costly warranty. The reverse is true as well — the lower the class, the younger a car and/or the fewer miles it has, the less the warranty will cost.

Factors to consider

When to buy:  “If the consumer knows they’re going to own the vehicle for a long time, it makes sense to buy a VSC while they’re still covered” under the manufacturer’s warranty, Batt explained. Getting it sooner would be less expensive than waiting until the manufacturer warranty is over because the vehicle is younger with fewer miles, and while the manufacturer’s warranty applies there is less risk to the VSC company in the short term.

How to buy: A VSC could be expensive, depending on the above factors. If you don’t want to or can’t pay for the entire plan at once, Endurance Auto Warranty offers payment plans.

Whether it’s right for you: If you’re undecided on whether an extended warranty is worth getting for your car and your budget, you can check out this extended warranty cheat-sheet that has a list of questions to ask or this article on how to find the best extended warranty for you.

 

Compare Auto Loan Offers