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There Are A Few Things To Know When Your Used EV Warranty Expires

There Are A Few Things To Know When Your Used EV Warranty Expires

With the first round of all-electric cars hitting the end of their manufacturer warranties, and more coming this year, what will happen when a major component needs repair or replacement? I want to talk to you today about one of the most common questions "What happens when the warranty on my electric car expires?" There's no way around it — electric cars are expensive. And when we buy them, we buy more than just the car itself, most of us add extra protection by purchasing an extended warranty. When can you expect that warranty to run out?

This article is for those who are considering buying a used electric car. The information in this post should help you decide what to look out for and how to buy an electric car with confidence.

How electric car warranties work

We all know that when you buy a new car, the manufacturer offers a warranty. This is basically a promise that if something goes wrong with your vehicle during your warranty period, it will be fixed for free. But what happens if you're late to the party and purchased a used electric car? You may be wondering, how electric car warranties work.

The answer is pretty much the same as it would be for any other vehicle. The manufacturer's warranty typically lasts for 3 years or 36,000 miles (whichever comes first). After that time has passed, there are still several options available to you when something goes wrong with your car — but they all require some research on your part.

Let's take a look at each type of coverage in detail below:

Full Coverage (Comprehensive) - This is often referred to as bumper-to-bumper coverage and includes everything from major systems like the engine and transmission down to smaller components like lights and wipers. The idea here is that most parts will wear out over time no matter how well you take care of them, so this type of coverage ensures that you'll get replacement parts at no cost to you should they break down unexpectedly within the first three years of ownership.

Warranties are generally transferable. If you buy a used car that's under its original factory warranty, the original owner's warranty is usually still valid — even if they've sold their vehicle to a dealer. That means that if something goes wrong with the EV after it's been sold to the second owner, the original manufacturer will still honor any remaining warranty coverage at no cost (usually).

Powertrain warranties vary by manufacturer and model year but typically range from three years to five years or longer for major components like motors and battery packs. A complete list of powertrain components covered by specific makes and models can be found in our reviews section for each make/model as well as on their websites.

Battery warranties are more complicated because lithium-ion batteries degrade over time due to normal use and age — regardless of how much they're charged or discharged — so manufacturers limit the length of their EV battery warranties accordingly. This is why most EV manufacturers recommend replacing it.

EV Warranty Length

The lifespan of electric vehicle batteries is a hot topic. The best way to ensure that your used EV battery won't let you down is to make sure that you understand how the battery warranty works, and what it covers.

EV batteries have a limited lifespan and can fail at any time due to age or other factors such as abuse or neglect. The warranty for used EVs should be carefully reviewed to determine if it includes the battery — and if so, what will be covered by it.

Your used EV's battery warranty may cover everything from replacing dead cells in the pack to full replacement of the entire battery if it fails within the first five years of ownership. Some manufacturers offer an 8-year/100K-mile powertrain warranty with limited coverage on their EVs' batteries as well.

The good news is that most manufacturers also offer an extended warranty on their used EVs' batteries after they've completed the initial period under standard warranty coverage (usually three years).

Keep your used electric vehicle well-maintained

If you've invested in a used electric vehicle, chances are you've also invested in the vehicle's warranty. Most EV manufacturers offer a limited warranty on their cars, ranging from three years to eight years or more. But what happens when that warranty expires?

As with any other warranty, if something goes wrong with your EV, it can be costly to fix. However, there are a few things you can do to keep costs down after the warranty expires:

Keep your used electric vehicle well-maintained. You might think that an older car isn't worth spending money on, but keeping up with routine maintenance can help prevent expensive repairs later on down the line. You'll also know what kind of condition your car is in so that if something does go wrong, you know whether it's just a minor issue or something more serious that requires an expensive fix (like replacing an entire component).

Get familiar with DIY repairs. If something does go wrong with your EV after its manufacturer's warranty expires, knowing how to do small repairs yourself could help lower the cost of getting it fixed by a mechanic (or even save you time altogether). There are many online resources available for learning how to do simple repairs yourself — such as YouTube videos or instructional books — and many others.

Once your used EV reaches the end of its original brand warranty, you give up the safety net that the warranty provides. While you should always maintain your used EVs, now will be even more important to keep careful track of used EV maintenance and regularly conduct preventative services. Use the manufacturer's recommended service schedule and thoroughly research contractors who specialize in electric vehicle service to find someone you trust.

In short, when you're looking for a used EV, be sure to go over its charging cable and tires. In addition, pay attention to the warranty—it may not cover all you think it will. If any of these factors may turn out to be a problem, ask a lot of questions, and use your discretion. Of course, if you keep up with regular maintenance on your used EV, it may still drive just fine when its warranty expires.




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