What’s covered by a car warranty?

Our partner, MotorEasy offers readers special prices.

Photo of the couple traveling in the car taking selfie

Car repair costs are among those expenses we all dread.


Often unexpected, they can run into hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds and unless you’re protected by a warranty, you’ll have to cover them in full yourself.

Although new cars come with a manufacturer’s warranty, these usually only last three years, finishing just when you’re likely to need cover most.  Research by extended warranty company MotorEasy found that over 40% of vehicles will break down in their fourth year – the year after most manufacturers’ warranties end. Some manufacturers’ warranties last longer than three years, but the level of cover provided generally dwindles dramatically in the last couple of years.

If you don’t want to be left financially exposed in the event something goes wrong, extended warranty cover could be well worth considering. You don’t have to take extended cover from your manufacturer, as policies from standalone providers are often cheaper and more comprehensive.

Don’t assume that you won’t be eligible for cover because your car is too old, as policies are available for older vehicles too. For example, MotorEasy will provide cover for cars up to 12 years of age and with less than 120,000 miles on the clock.

Remember to read the policy small print before signing up. The best extended policies not only cover parts that fail as a result of wear and tear, but also failures that have occurred as a result of manufacturing defects and your car’s age. Damage to insured parts of your car by any uninsured parts should also be covered.

Check whether labour costs are covered in full too. This is crucial given that it can sometimes take a long time for garages to establish exactly what is wrong. Previous studies of garage labour rates have found that the maximum cost of an hour of a garage mechanic’s time reached a high of £240, so even a five hours’ work could cost you more than £1,200 in labour costs alone.

The Radio Times Car Warranty service provided by MotorEasy covers cars up to 12 years of age and with up to 120,000 miles on the clock. Labour costs are always paid in full, regardless of your car’s age, but if your car is older than six years or has driven more than 60,000 miles, you will receive a percentage towards other costs depending on the vehicle’s age and mileage at the time of breakdown.



 MotorEasy Limited is accredited to The Motor Ombudsman and its warranty plans are approved by Trading Standards (CTSI)