How To Check If Your Vehicle Is Still Under Warranty

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If you just got smacked across the face with a hefty repair bill and are now wondering how the heck you’re supposed to pay for it, you’ve come to the right place.

Same thing if you’re about to buy a used car. You probably want to know if it’s still under warranty just in case anything decides to go wrong the second you drive your vehicle off the lot.

Or maybe you just want to be prepared for the next big, bad repair bill that’s gonna come huffing and puffing and blowing your bank account away.

Whatever it is, today we’re going to cover the ins and outs of whether your car warranty is still in force.

What Is A Warranty?

The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) defines a warranty as a promise to stand behind the integrity of warrantied product.

This means a car warranty is a promise made by the manufacturer that if something goes wrong, the manufacturer will fix it.

Federal law requires that car warranties be available for you to read before you buy even when you are shopping by catalog or on the Internet.

Federal law also requires all warranties to be included as part of the purchase price of your car. If the warranty you want to buy is not included in the purchase price of your vehicle, it is a vehicle service contract.

A vehicle service contract is not the same as a warranty, even though both provide repair coverage for your car.

Now here’s the kicker. There are multiple different warranties that cover your new car, and with few exceptions, they all cover your new car for a different length of time.

Different Parts Of Your Car Are Covered By Different Warranties

There are 3 primary levels of warranty coverage you need to be aware of. These are not the only types of warranties that may be covering your vehicle. With that being said, these are the ones you are most likely to use because they typically cover common repairs. These 3 levels of warranty coverage are:

  • Bumper-To-Bumper (Also known as a Limited Warranty)
  • Powertrain Warranty
  • AntiPerforation Warranty

1: Bumper-To-Bumper / Limited Warranty

The bumper-to-bumper warranty provides repair coverage for all the mechanical parts of your car, hence the name. This warranty can also be called the basic warranty or limited warranty.

The industry standard bumper-to-bumper warranty covers your new car for 3 years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first. However, companies like Hyundai offer bumper-to-bumper coverage for 5 years  or 60,000 miles.

This is almost always what people mean when they talk about the manufacturer warranty.

It Covers

  • Mechanical breakdowns from non-wear-and-tear parts, as well as any other manufacturing defects. Generally speaking, any breakdown from normal use is covered during this warranty.

It Does NOT Cover

  • Wear and tear parts (think brakes, windshield wipers, tires, batteries, etc)
  • Damage caused by misuse, including negligence, dangerous driving, etc.
  • Damage covered by insurance (accidents, acts of nature)
  • Routine services like oil changes
  • Safety inspections

2: Powertrain Warranty

The powertrain warranty provides repair coverage for the parts of your car that move it forward, including your engine, transmission, and transfer case.

Some companies do not offer a separate powertrain warranty, which means your manufacturer warranty coverage will run out when the bumper-to-bumper coverage period is over.

If you do have powertrain coverage you can expect to be covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles, all the way up to 10 years or 100,000 miles in some cases.

It Covers

  • Engine
  • Transmission
  • Transaxle parts

It Does Not Cover

  • Anything other than what is listed above.
  • Wear and tear parts, including spark plugs, clutch packs, etc.
  • Damage caused by misuse, including negligence, dangerous driving, etc.
  • Damage covered by insurance (accidents, acts of nature)
  • Routine services like transmission fluid changes

3: Anti-Perforation Warranty:

Exact as the name implies, the anti-perforation warranty protects you from corrosion, typically on the body from the lower window line down on your car.

Manufacturers like Hyundai and Kia both include anti-perforation coverage as part of their warranty. Coverage typically lasts for a fixed period of time, which in Hyundai’s case is 7 years with unlimited miles.

It covers:

  • Rust to body panels, typically from the lower window line down.

How To Know If Your Car Is Still Under Warranty

Now that you understand the difference between each warranty type, let’s dive into which warranty(s) are still covering your vehicle.

First, the good news. If your vehicle is less than 5-6 years old, and has less than 60,000-70,000 miles on it, chances are, your vehicle is likely at least partially covered by some type of warranty.

So here’s the deal. There are a couple of ways to figure out if your vehicle is still under warranty.

The standard way to do it is as follows:

  1. Locate your vehicle’s VIN number. This number is usually on the bottom of your driver’s side windshield. Sometimes it can also be found on the sticker inside your driver’s side door.
  2. Once your have your VIN, confirm the mileage on the vehicle. This should be located on your vehicle’s dashboard.
  3. Call a local dealership that specializes in your make. For example, if you drive a Nissan, call your local Nissan dealership. With your VIN and mileage in hand, they will be able to check on things for you.

If you still have the original paperwork for your vehicle, you can also check there. By law, any warranty written on your car is required to be disclosed to you prior to your purchase. The paperwork should contain information about the warranty. Many manufacturers will put this in a seperate booklet that contains all of your warranty info, including the amount of time your warranty is good for.

Finally, some manufacturers have a tool which allows you to do this yourself. You simply enter your VIN and mileage and then you’ll be able to check.

That said, all of these methods are kind of a pain in the butt. If you want a quick answer to your question, we put together the following tables for you. They will tell you if your vehicle is still under warranty or not. Please note, that we only have covered commonly avalible makes in the United States, so if your vehicle isn’t listed here you probably have an uncommon make.

How Long Your Bumper To Bumper Warranty Lasts

ManufacturerWarranty Period
Acura4 years / 50,000 miles
Audi4 years / 50,000 miles
BMW4 years / 50,000 miles
Buick3 years / 36,000 miles
Cadillac4 years / 50,000 miles
Chevrolet3 years / 36,000 miles
Chrysler3 years / 36,000 miles
Dodge3 years / 36,000 miles
Ford3 years / 36,000 miles
GMC3 years / 36,000 miles
Honda3 years / 36,000 miles
Hyundai5 years / 60,000 miles
Infiniti4 years / 60,000 miles
Jaguar5 years / 60,000 miles
Jeep3 years / 36,000 miles
Kia5 years / 60,000 miles
Lexus4 years / 50,000 miles
Mazda3 years / 36,000 miles
Mercedes-Benz4 years / 50,000 miles
Mitsubishi5 years / 60,000 miles
Nissan3 years / 36,000 miles
Ram3 years / 36,000 miles
Subaru3 years / 36,000 miles
Suzuki3 years / 36,000 miles
Tesla4 years / 50,000 miles
Toyota3 years / 36,000 miles
Volkswagen4 years / 50,000 miles
Volvo4 years / 50,000 miles

Typically, powertrain coverage lasts quite a bit longer for the manufacturers that do offer it. All makes marked with a * only carry the bumper to bumper coverage as described above.

How Long Your Powertrain Warranty Lasts

ManufacturerWarranty Period
Acura6 years / 70,000 miles
Audi*4 years / 50,000 miles
BMW*4 years / 50,000 miles
Buick6 years / 70,000 miles
Cadillac6 years / 70,000 miles
Chevrolet5 years / 60,000 miles
Chrysler5 years / 60,000 miles
Dodge4 years / 60,000 miles
Ford5 years / 60,000 miles
GMC5 years / 60,000 miles
Honda5 years / 60,000 miles
Hyundai10 years / 100,000 miles
Infiniti7 years / 70,000 miles
Jaguar*5 years / 60,000 miles
Jeep5 years / 60,000 miles
Kia10 years / 100,000 miles
Lexus6 years / 70,000 miles
Mazda5 years / 60,000 miles
Mercedes-Benz*4 years / 50,000 miles
Mitsubishi10 years / 100,000 miles
Nissan5 years / 60,000 miles
Ram5 years / 60,000 miles (gas) 5 years / 100,000 miles (diesel)
Subaru5 years / 60,000 miles
Suzuki7 years / 100,000 miles
Tesla8 years / 125,000 miles
Toyota6 years / 60,000 miles
Volkswagen*4 years / 50,000 miles
Volvo*4 years / 50,000 miles

Has Your Warranty Expired? We Can Help

A vehicle service contract provides the same great benefits as your car’s manufacturer warranty after it expires. You can get total car coverage plus 24/7 roadside assistance plus free oil changes and tire rotations.

That’s not to mention a vehicle service contract from Protect My Car also pays for your rental car, hotels/meals, AND gives you up to $150 a month in rewards at your favorite stores and restaurants.

If you are interested to see how easy it can be to protect your car, just fill out the form below to get started.

About Protect My Car

Protect My Car is an extended auto warranty company. Our goal here at Protect My Car is to eliminate your worry of being financially responsible for an expensive mechanical breakdown. With our extended auto warranty, you don’t have to worry about being fully burdened with the cost of a covered repair.