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You may have heard of a bumper-to-bumper warranty if you’re looking to buy a new car or if you’re considering extended coverage. Few people understand what a bumper-to-bumper warranty actually covers, though, so we’ll break down the protection plan below.

In this article, we’ll take a close look at how a bumper-to-bumper warranty works and mention how long coverage lasts. Our team of experts has combed through the aftermarket auto industry to find the best extended warranty companies, so we’ll also give recommendations for if you’re considering an extended bumper-to-bumper warranty.

In This Review:

    What Is The Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty?

    A bumper-to-bumper warranty comes with almost all new cars and covers the repair and replacement of the vast majority of your vehicle’s parts. Bumper-to-bumper warranties only pay for repairs caused by defective parts or workmanship errors.

    Bumper-to-bumper warranty plans are typically included as part of the factory warranty that comes as part of a new vehicle purchase. The details of your plan, including the length of coverage, are decided by the car manufacturer.

    Manufacturers have many names for the bumper-to-bumper warranty. Ford and Hyundai offer “new vehicle limited warranty” plans, whereas Lexus calls its coverage the “basic warranty.”

    Powertrain Warranty Coverage

    Another common piece of the bumper-to-bumper warranty is powertrain coverage. A powertrain warranty backs the most essential components that provide power to your vehicle. 

    Common items included in a powertrain warranty include:

    • Engine
    • Transmission
    • Fuel pump
    • Drivetrain
    • Transfer case
    • Seals and gaskets

    You’ll need to contact your warranty provider to find out exactly what’s covered under your powertrain warranty. Generally, powertrain coverage outlasts your bumper-to-bumper warranty due to the importance of the parts it covers.

    Extended Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty

    The average factory bumper-to-bumper warranty lasts for around 4 years/50,000 miles. After that, you’ll be on your own when dealing with unexpected repair costs. You’ve got two options if you’re hoping to extend your bumper-to-bumper warranty: picking up coverage through the automaker or turning to a third-party provider.

    Purchasing extended warranty coverage from the dealership is something a salesperson will likely bring up when you’re buying a new car. That’s because you can only purchase an extended warranty from the manufacturer before your original factory warranty expires.

    If you choose this route, buying early does have its perks. You’ll get access to genuine manufacturer parts and service from specialized dealership technicians. The downside is that coverage from a dealership is usually pricey, and adding an extended auto warranty to your vehicle’s financing plan means that you’re paying interest on potentially unneeded car repairs.

    By contrast, third-party bumper-to-bumper warranty providers tend to offer greater flexibility. You won’t be limited to repair service from your local dealership, there are far more plans to choose from, and you can even get an extended warranty for cars over 100,000 miles.

    Car manufacturers sell customers extended bumper-to-bumper warranty plans, while third-party companies offer nearly identical vehicle service contracts. Third-party contracts tend to provide greater flexibility at lower costs, and they can be bought at any point in your car’s life.

    What Does The Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty Cover?

    While a bumper-to-bumper warranty almost always offers comprehensive coverage of car components, exact details vary by the automaker. The best way to check what’s covered is by carefully reviewing your warranty contract.

    Since the extensive coverage offered by many bumper-to-bumper warranty options covers hundreds of parts, many manufacturers write exclusionary warranties. This means that your warranty contract will specifically list only the parts that are ineligible for repairs. The reverse of this is stated component coverage, where the manufacturer only lists out covered parts.

    Here are some components usually covered by a bumper-to-bumper warranty:

    • Air conditioning and heating
    • Engine cooling system
    • Steering
    • Electrical systems
    • Suspension
    • Entertainment, audio, and high-tech systems
    • Powertrain components (for the duration of the powertrain warranty)

    While a bumper-to-bumper warranty offers protection for most major components of your car, it has its limits. For one thing, coverage is only for problems caused by defective parts or workmanship errors.

    Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty Exclusions

    While a bumper-to-bumper warranty covers repair costs for a number of components, not everything is backed by your vehicle’s coverage. Here are a few common exclusions:

    • Normal wear items like windshield wiper blades and brake pads
    • Windshield glass
    • Body panels and paint
    • Standard maintenance like oil changes and tire rotations
    • Damage from a collision or environmental factors
    • Damage from owner neglect or abuse

    How Long Does A Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty Last?

    The length of a bumper-to-bumper warranty varies depending on your car manufacturer. The same is true of third-party extended bumper-to-bumper warranties, as these providers may also have coverage limits.

    Below are bumper-to-bumper warranty term lengths for several major automakers:

    Car Manufacturer

    Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty Period


    3 years/36,000 miles


    3 years/36,000 miles


    3 years/36,000 miles


    5 years/60,000 miles


    3 years/36,000 miles


    5 years/60,000 miles


    3 years/36,000 miles


    3 years/36,000 miles

    As can be seen, coverage lengths are pretty standard across the auto industry. The industry’s longest bumper-to-bumper warranty plans are 5 years/60,000 miles and are provided by Hyundai, Genesis, Mitsubishi, and Kia.

    What Is The Cost of A Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty?

    Bumper-to-bumper warranty plans are included as part of the manufacturer’s warranty, which is in turn folded into the price of a new car. Buying a manufacturer’s extended warranty usually comes with a higher price tag compared to third-party protection plans.

    If you end up needing a covered repair during the life span of the factory warranty, check your warranty contract to see if you’ve got a deductible. The deductible is the amount of money you must pay up front at the repair shop before a warranty covers the rest.

    Deductibles usually range from $0 to as high as $250 depending on the automaker. Some plans include vanishing deductibles, which means your up front payment is waived if you get service done at a specific dealership.

    Cost Of A Third-Party Extended Warranty

    Our research on the aftermarket warranty industry found that the average cost of a third-party bumper-to-bumper extended warranty is around $2,394. If you don’t choose to pay up front for coverage, there are monthly payment plans that range from under $60 to around $90 per month.

    To get a better sense of how much an extended warranty costs, we reached out to leading warranty companies for free quotes on a 2018 Honda Civic with 30,000 miles. Our warranty experts were quoted the following prices:

    Warranty Company

    Protection Plan

    Warranty Length

    Cost Per Month

    Down Payment

    Total Cost



    6 years/

    71,000 miles


    for 36 months




    New Car Diamond

    5 years/

    70,000 miles


    for 18 months



    Protect My Car


    4 years/

    unlimited miles


    for 48 months





    7 years/

    125,000 miles


    for 24 months

    First month’s payment


    All of the bumper-to-bumper warranty plans we obtained quotes for include deductibles of $100. While CarShield was easily the cheapest option, its coverage length is far eclipsed by that of CARCHEX and Endurance.

    Should You Buy A Bumper-To-Bumper Extended Warranty?

    Deciding whether to buy an extended bumper-to-bumper warranty hinges on many factors, such as the reliability of your car, the overall cost of the warranty, and the company that will be providing repair services.

    Getting an extended warranty can be a smart way to budget for unexpected auto repair costs, especially if you’d rather have peace of mind while on the road. Many warranties also include additional coverage such as roadside assistance and towing services, which can make mechanical breakdowns less stressful to deal with.

    Paying out of pocket may save you money in the long run if you’ve got a reliable car. After all, your car may not need enough repairs to justify the cost of an extended warranty.

    If you choose a third-party option, consider the reputation of the company. Look at reviews from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Trustpilot to search for recurring issues and learn how customer complaints are handled. If you’re considering an extended bumper-to-bumper warranty, read our breakdown of reputable extended car warranty companies.

    Our Recommendations For Extended Warranties

    Our team has reviewed the market and selected Endurance and CARCHEX as two of the best extended warranty providers for their extensive coverage offerings and strong customer reviews.

    Endurance: Best Coverage

    Endurance offers some of the best coverage plans in the auto warranty business. The company is a direct provider of warranties, meaning it manages its own plans rather than contracting with other companies for some services.

    Endurance has six offerings that range from bumper-to-bumper warranty plans to repairs for only the essential powertrain components. All customers who purchase Endurance plans get one free year of membership in Endurance Elite Benefits, which includes perks such as tire repair and replacement.

     Learn more about this provider by checking out our complete Endurance warranty review. Be aware that Endurance plans are not available in California.

    CARCHEX: Best For Used Cars

    If you have an older car that you want to keep on the road, CARCHEX may suit your needs. It’s our top choice for used vehicles since it offers coverage up to 250,000 miles and has consistently low pricing.

    What makes CARCHEX truly stand out is its solid reputation after more than 20 years in the industry. The company is accredited by the BBB and holds a stellar A+ rating on the site.

     Read our CARCHEX review to find out more information about the company’s bumper-to-bumper warranty offerings.

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