Extended warranties are expensive. Extra coverage on a new car, for instance, can cost an average of $1,000. Generally, you’re better off not shelling out the extra cash to cover a product that may never have a problem. However, there are times when a product needs additional coverage because it’s a new technology that has yet to prove its durability, it’s expensive to fix, or it has a high probability of theft. Here are three ways you can get the warranty that came with your product extended free of charge:
1. Check your credit card agreement. If you charge your purchase, you might be able to get additional warranty coverage. Many of the major credit card issuers will offer an extension on your existing product warranty for up to one year for free. American Express offers this option to all of their card holders. MasterCard and Visa extend this offer on some of their cards.
2. Take advantage of store promotions. Some stores will offer a warranty extension just for the pleasure of your business. For example, Costco offers an extension on existing warranties for televisions, projectors, and computers for up to two years through its Costco Concierge Services.
3. Ask for a free repair. If your product is past the manufacturer’s warranty, and something goes terribly wrong, don’t immediately run out and buy a new one. Call the manufacturer to explain the problem and request a replacement. They’ll be even more likely to help you if several customers have experienced the same problem.