When you consider the extensive mileage covered by a Class 8 semi truck—potentially reaching up to 1 million miles over its lifespan—it becomes apparent that wear and tear on its components is inevitable. Unfortunately, the associated costs of repairs and maintenance for commercial trucks can accumulate rapidly. Unforeseen issues, such as engine failures, can incur expenses ranging from $20,000 to $50,000, leading to considerable business downtime and financial setbacks.
As a prudent business owner, safeguarding your investments is likely a priority, and your fleet of commercial trucks should be no exception. This is where a warranty covering repair costs for your trucks becomes crucial.
Here’s an overview of the various types of commercial truck warranties and their functionality.
WHAT IS A COMMERCIAL TRUCK WARRANTY?
At its core, a warranty is a written assurance from either the manufacturer or a third-party vendor, pledging to cover the expenses of replacing or repairing specified parts or major components if they fail within a designated time period or mileage range. Essentially, warranties mitigate the substantial financial risks associated with breakdowns for individual trucks or fleet owners. When your truck requires servicing, the service provider will verify your coverage and inform you of the warranty’s extent, detailing which repairs and parts are covered and which you’ll need to cover out-of-pocket.
For commercial vehicles, two primary types of warranties are typically available: original equipment manufacturer (OEM) factory warranties and extended warranties.
OEM FACTORY WARRANTIES
OEM factory warranties are complimentary offerings from the brand at the time of the truck’s initial purchase. They cover early issues with specific parts, components, and systems. The coverage generally lasts for a predetermined time or until a certain mileage threshold is reached, varying based on the OEM, model, and year of the vehicle. If you sell the truck while the warranty is still active, the remaining coverage transfers to the new owner.
WHAT DO FACTORY WARRANTIES COVER?
Most commercial truck OEMs provide factory warranties with separate coverage periods and mileage limits for:
- Basic coverage
- Emissions/aftertreatment system
The coverage specifics vary by manufacturer, so it’s crucial to fully understand the inclusions and exclusions when purchasing the vehicle.
Routine vehicle maintenance is often a requirement to maintain coverage under most factory warranties. This involves regular services such as oil changes, tire rotations, belt replacement, fluid checks, brake pad inspections and replacement, and overall vehicle inspections.
EXTENDED TRUCK WARRANTIES
Once your original OEM factory warranty expires, you have the option to purchase an extended warranty that provides additional coverage. These warranties can be extended OEM warranties offered by the manufacturer or aftermarket extended warranties from third-party providers. Both options involve upfront costs, deductibles, specific repair cost limits, and an overall coverage total, similar to insurance.
If you’re considering an extended warranty, it’s crucial to understand precisely what it covers and where you can obtain service if needed. OEM-provided extended warranties usually cover new factory parts, often requiring service at the dealership. Aftermarket warranties may offer a broader network of service providers, but you need to ensure they cover compatible parts for your truck.
DO YOU NEED AN EXTENDED WARRANTY?
Considering that used trucks are more prone to costly equipment failures as they age, an extended warranty becomes particularly valuable. To illustrate, for a Class 8 semi truck covering 1 million miles in its lifetime, repairs and breakdowns are not covered for nearly 80% of the truck’s life after the standard OEM warranty expires.
Extended warranties are ideal for truck owners who either drive long distances, quickly surpassing the mileage range of standard OEM warranty coverage, or those who don’t accumulate many miles but aim to extend the time during which repairs are covered.
HAVE ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?
If you’re still wondering if a extended warranty is right for you or if the current piece of equipment you’re looking to purchase has existing warranty, please reach out to one of the 5 Star Truck Sales team members and we will assist you.