We’ve all been there, driving along when you hear a noise coming from the hood (or wheel well, or someplace you can’t quite figure out) that gives you that SINKING FEELING. You know that it’s time for a trip to the mechanic, but that means shelling out BIG BUCKS for a repair.
Before you make that appointment and bring your car in, you might want to check to see if your vehicle qualifies for a secret warranty. Why secret? Because quite often your mechanic either doesn’t KNOW your car qualifies, or just doesn’t tell you.
These post warranty assistance programs can provide FREE or REDUCED cost repairs on your vehicle even AFTER your warranty has expired. While many states require auto manufacturers to alert you when they cover a repair, many do not. ALSO – if you’ve had your car repaired BEFORE being notified about a particular service problem with your car, you entitled to a refund of the service and parts provided.
Be warned though that these secret warranties have a very limited time or mileage limit (usually 1 or 2 years AFTER your warranty has expired).
Secret warranties are DIFFERENT than safety recalls (like brake failure, fuel leaks, etc.). Safety recalls will trigger a FACTORY recall and you should receive a recall notice in the mail letting you know that your car can be repaired at the dealership free of charge.
I check the NHTSA site often to see if there are any new “secret” warranties on my car. You can also check The Center for Auto Safety or Car Complaints and search for your car, model and year to see if it’s eligible for any FREE REPAIRS.
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