It’s a homeowner’s nightmare, you come home from a long day only to find that your refrigerator (or another large appliance) has stopped working. Suddenly, you’re facing either a hefty repair bill or even worse, a total replacement.
In this scenario, you may wish you had a way to cover the costs of fixing or replacing a purchase that already took a large chunk of change out of your pocket.
This is where an extended warranty can save the day. Extended warranties are aptly named because their primary purpose is to extend the life of a product’s warranty and safeguard against costly repairs. While free product protection may seem too good to be true, it’s often an underutilized perk of credit card ownership that can save you money if a big purchase breaks.
What is a credit card extended warranty?
So, you have a big purchase in mind — maybe you need a new dishwasher or hot water heater — and the manufacturer offers you an extended warranty. Do you take it?
If you want a sense of protection, knowing that your expensive purchase won’t cost you more in repairs down the line, then the answer is probably yes. But, before you purchase that extended warranty, first check with your credit card issuer. A credit card extended warranty is essentially a perk of using your credit card for large purchases. If the product you’re buying is eligible for a warranty from the manufacturer then your credit card may match or exceed the product’s warranty.
To be eligible for a credit card extended warranty, you’ll need to make the purchase on your credit card. After the manufacturer’s warranty has expired, the extended warranty from your credit card will kick in, giving you an extra period of protection.
What credit cards offer an extended warranty?
Many credit cards offer extended warranty options. Major issuers that offer extended warranty options for their credit cards include:
|Issuer||Maximum Coverage||Extended Warranty Offer|
|Visa||$10,000 per claim||For manufacturer warranties that are less than a year, Visa will double the warranty. For warranties that last 1-3 years, Visa will add an additional year of coverage.|
|Mastercard||$10,000 per claim||Mastercard doubles manufacturer’s warranty of 24 months or less.|
|Capital One||$10,000 per claim, maximum per cardholder is $50,000||Coverage amount and length varies. In most cases, manufacturer warranties that are eligible for an extended warranty through Capital One must be three years or less.|
|Discover||$10,000 per claim, maximum per cardholder is $50,000||Currently discontinued. Eligible products purchased with Discover card prior to Feb. 28, 2018 still qualify for the duration of their extended warranty.|
|Citi||$10,000 per claim||Up to 24 months of extended warranty available on eligible purchases.|
|$10,000 per claim||Coverage up to $10,000 per claim on eligible purchases with a manufacturer warranty that is three years or less.|
Many extended warranties offers come with extensive fine print and exclusions. Before choosing any extended warranty offer review all details from the issuer to make sure your purchase is eligible.
How to use an extended warranty?
Applying an extended warranty to your purchase will vary by issuer, but in all cases, issuer coverage only extended if you purchased an item with the credit you must make the original purchase with the credit card that you want extended warranty coverage from. Additionally, many issuers require that the purchase be subject to a manufacturer or store warranty before they will match (or exceed) the offer.
While claim processes vary, oftentimes you will need:
- The original receipt of purchase
- Documentation of the original manufacturer’s warranty
- Credit card statement of purchase
- Estimate of repair costs
Our take on credit card extended warranties:
A credit card extended warranty offers peace of mind when making a large purchase that extends beyond the traditional manufacturer warranty. That being said, credit card extended warranties are notoriously fickle and come with extensive fine print. Before betting on the fact that your large purchase is covered, take the time to read about your individual issuer’s extended warranty policy and most importantly their exclusions.