So, getting a new Mazda 3 2.5 and was wondering how everybody feels about extended warranties?
Save your money.
The thing about extended warranties is the crap shoot they represent. On any one car an extended warranty may well pay off, however, over your lifetime of buying cars, the odds of you coming out far enough ahead on all your cars to justify the warranties is pretty slim.
I was dumb enough to buy an extended warranty on a car back in 1988; it didn't pay off. Since then my wife and I have purchased ten new cars, I've tracked both the cost and deductibles of factory (do not buy after market warranties) extended warranties versus what would have been our covered repairs for unscheduled maintenance. Consider the following:
- Total cost of the warranties had we opted to purchase them: $19,800
- Total cost of unscheduled repairs (those which would have been covered): $3,200 ($3,600 less deductibles of $400)
- Net gain by not buying extended warranties: $16,600
Side note #1: We had a vehicle purchased new back in 1998 blow a transmission in 2006; had we purchased the extended warranty for this vehicle the transmission would have been covered IF the vehicle had less than 100,000 miles on the odometer, however, the transmission failed at 109,000 miles (exactly as it turned out). The new transmission ended up costing $2,600, we would have effectively paid double for the tranny had we purchased what would have been a useless warranty.
Side note #2: We had a 2009 Mazda3, a car which not only became my daily driver, but also the car our son learned how to drive a manual transmission in, AND the car he ended up taking to college, and through it all, the car didn't have even a single unscheduled repair in over 100,000 miles of use.