- Major engine parts such as pumps
- Transmission parts
- Electrical components
After purchasing a new or used car, you’ll need to insure it to stay compliant with state insurance laws. Your insurance company might suggest you add mechanical breakdown insurance (MBI) to your policy. The insurance agent will probably explain that MBI can help repair your car if it breaks down.
There are other, more flexible options for protecting your car. An extended warranty, for example, provides similar coverage to mechanical breakdown insurance plus extra benefits. CARCHEX offers a range of Extended Vehicle Protection Plans to help you cover repair costs due to unexpected breakdowns.
Read on to learn everything you need to know about MBI and why you should consider extended protection from CARCHEX. Call 866-261-3457 or fill out the online form to get a free quote on what it would cost to cover your specific vehicle.
Most auto insurance coverage, such as comprehensive or collision coverage, only pays to repair the damage that occurred due to an accident. Mechanical breakdown insurance provides coverage for repairs not related to an accident. It pays for all or part of repairs if covered systems wear out unexpectedly.
Generally, mechanical breakdown coverage is added to your policy as an endorsement. Car insurance endorsements, sometimes called riders, are extra coverage you choose as an add-on to your policy. These endorsements cost extra and aren’t a part of a standard insurance policy.
Not all insurance providers offer mechanical breakdown insurance. Others may require you to meet certain coverage levels to qualify for MBI. For example, an insurance carrier might require that you pay for comprehensive and collision insurance in order to add MBI to your policy.
Mechanical breakdown coverage generally protects your car against unexpected breakdowns. Depending on your provider, you may be able to get different levels of breakdown insurance.
It’s important to remember that mechanical breakdown coverage doesn’t usually pay for routine maintenance or tire-related issues. Your MBI isn’t going to pay for an oil change or regular alignment of your vehicle. Poor maintenance of your vehicle can cause your MBI claim to be denied. Be sure to continue regular tune-ups and maintenance service even if you have MBI coverage.
Breakdown insurance is also not used to cover repairs for damages due to accidents or collisions. These damages are usually covered by your regular insurance coverage, such as collision coverage.
The cost of mechanical breakdown coverage varies by insurance provider. Cost of coverage will also depend on the value of your car and other factors. Since MBI is added to your insurance policy, you usually pay for coverage each month as part of your insurance premium.
You’ll also be required to pay a deductible when you file an MBI claim. Like the deductible for your standard car insurance, an MBI deductible is your portion of responsibility for covered repair costs. Car insurance company GEICO, one of the few providers with mechanical insurance, requires a $250 deductible for each covered claim.
Let’s say you have GEICO breakdown insurance coverage and need to have your engine repaired. The repairs will cost $1,000 from the auto shop. You’ll pay $250 before GEICO pays the remainder, provided the repair is covered.
Almost all MBI endorsements are designed for new cars. A newer vehicle is much less likely to break down unexpectedly than one that’s been on the road for years. Of the few insurance companies offering MBI coverage, most require a car to be new or nearly new for coverage.
It’s much more difficult to add mechanical coverage for a used car. As cars age, the chance of a breakdown increases. Insurance companies don’t want to provide mechanical insurance coverage to cars that might break down. As more drivers keep their cars longer, it’s important to have breakdown coverage.
Some MBI providers won’t insure a car for mechanical coverage if the manufacturer’s warranty has expired. For certain types of vehicles, this could be as little as three years. Other providers are even more restrictive. You may not be able to add MBI coverage if your vehicle is as old as 15 months old, barely more than a year.
Mileage restrictions are also included in qualifications. Your provider may not allow you to enroll a vehicle if it has as little as 15,000 miles. For someone who drives often or has a long commute, your nearly new car may be ineligible for mechanical breakdown insurance before it turns a year old.
In addition to mechanical breakdown insurance, you may have heard of extended car warranties. Extended warranties, which are technically vehicle service contracts, provide much the same coverage as breakdown insurance. An extended warranty, however, doesn’t come from your insurance agent.
You can buy an extended warranty from your dealer when you purchase your car or through a warranty provider like CARCHEX. Unlike MBI, you’re not required to buy a vehicle service contract from your insurance company. You can instead shop around for the best extended warranty for your car.
Another major difference between MBI and extended car warranties is coverage options for older vehicles. Most third-party warranty providers offer protection plans for older cars of those with higher mileage. You can even find protection plans for cars with over 100,000 miles. It’s unlikely your insurance provider would allow MBI for a car with that many miles.
An extended warranty and mechanical breakdown insurance are most likely going to cover almost the same breakdowns. With similar coverage, it doesn’t make sense to choose the more restrictive mechanical breakdown insurance.
Extended car warranties give you plenty of flexibility in almost all aspects of protecting your car, including:
Getting an extended warranty from a third-party provider gives you better control over the cost, coverage, and savings potential of your car’s protection. CARCHEX is one of the leading providers of extended vehicle service contracts for both new and used vehicles.
We offer a range of protection plans to meet almost every car and driver’s needs. Let our helpful and friendly car warranty and insurance experts help you find the perfect vehicle service contract for your car.
Our industry-leading protection plans come in five levels of coverage, so there’s a good fit for almost any vehicle. Whether you’ve just purchased a new vehicle and want to save money on long-term protection or have an older vehicle that may start breaking down, CARCHEX has a plan that suits your coverage requirements and budget.
|Coverage Level||Years of Coverage||Best For||Details|
|Titanium Coverage||Up to 10||New car owners looking for the best long-term protection of their vehicle||Our most comprehensive coverage level
All parts and systems covered, minus a short exclusions list
|Platinum Coverage||Up to 10||Affordable long-term coverage for new or low-mileage cars||Coverage includes repairs for hundreds of stated components|
|Gold Coverage||Up to 10||Drivers of cars with over 60,000 miles who are looking for premium protection and affordability||Flexible terms and comprehensive systems coverage
Covers repairs for most of your vehicle’s major systems
|Silver Coverage||Up to 7||High-mileage or older vehicles with high reliability ratings||Covers the essential systems of your vehicle in addition to powertrain coverage|
|Bronze Coverage||Up to 6||Older cars, vehicles with high mileage, and drivers looking for basic, affordable protection||Provides coverage for your car’s systems that are most likely to have breakdowns|
CARCHEX Extended Vehicle Protection Plans offer a lot more than great coverage for your vehicle. You’ll also get the benefits of an industry leader in car protection plans. We provide customer service you can trust, as proven by our BBB accreditation and A+ rating.
Other benefits of a CARCHEX extended warranty include:
Give your car the protection it needs, whether it’s brand new or has a few years on the road. A CARCHEX extended warranty can help you protect your car better than mechanical breakdown insurance.
Insurance Information Institute: https://www.iii.org/automobile-financial-responsibility-laws-by-state
The Zebra: https://www.thezebra.com/auto-insurance/car-insurance-endorsements/
Insurance Information Institute: https://www.iii.org/article/understanding-your-insurance-deductibles
Car and Driver: https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a22815727/america-household-vehicle-age/
CARCHEX is trusted by these industry leaders.
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