Posted on May 13 2012 at 06:40:57 PM in Shopping & Services
I worked in retail for over four years and I got to learn a lot about warranties. I learned the ways warranties can help you, and I also learned the ways warranties limit their coverage. Keep in mind that there are different types of warranties; there are those that come with the product automatically from the manufacturer and there are warranties which are offered by the seller.
When one thinks of a warranty or insurance one believes it will help them when something goes wrong with their product or service. That isn’t wrong, but there is more to it than that. Almost everything you can buy comes with a “limited one year warranty”; in order to have that warranty come in handy you must go thru the manufacturer.
For example, I owned an Apple iPhone 4 that went defective after about six months of having it. I didn’t do something to the phone myself or let anything happen to it, the phone simply went defective. Because the phone was within the one year manufacturer’s limited warranty I was able to go to an Apple store and have my phone replaced with a new iPhone 4, free of charge. Everything worked out great for me.
Let’s say my phone went defective after one year of owning it; in that case I would not have been able to have my phone replaced free of charge. I would have had to pay for Apple to fix my phone or if my phone wasn’t fixable then I would have had to purchase a new one at the retail price. Unless I had purchased an extended warranty through Apple or I had purchased an insurance plan through the seller. If I had either one of those coverages then they would have helped me by either replacing the phone or repairing it at a lesser price than if I wasn’t covered by a warranty or insurance.
That’s where things get tricky with warranties and insurances. If you pay for insurance on your cell phone, for example, you might have to pay a deductible so that your phone can be replaced. My niece once lost her phone, but she didn’t throw a huge fit because she knew she had insurance. When we called it in and asked for the phone to be replaced we were told we would have to pay a $125 deductible for the phone. Even though we paid a monthly insurance fee for the phone there was no way around the deductible.
In that case it was not worth having the insurance because my niece originally only paid $80 for the phone. Instead she decided she would get a temporary phone and wait until she was eligible for an upgrade.
In some situations maybe it is worth having the warranty/insurance, my main point is that one should ask questions and do research as to what is and isn’t covered and find out what the process is of having the warranty/insurance come into play. People should know that warranties and insurances have limitations, whether the coverage came with the product or whether you purchased the coverage.
When it comes to warranties and insurance there isn’t a dumb question to be asked and you can’t ask too many questions. You must be informed and convinced that the warranty/insurance is worth buying before you agree to purchase it.