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What is van warranty insurance?
Van warranty insurance is a type of insurance you can take out to help cover the cost of mechanical repairs if your van breaks down.
Do I need a van warranty?
Van warranties aren’t a legal requirement, unlike an actual van insurance policy. They’re generally used as an extra precautionary measure in case your van breaks down as a result of a fault in the vehicle.
How long does a van warranty last?
Van warranties usually last anywhere between a month and ten years, and most year-long policies are eligible for annual renewals.
Van warranty vs van insurance
While they’re related and can sometimes overlap, van warranty and van insurance policies work differently.
A van warranty covers you for the cost of repairs to parts or components that fail on their own – this is when it’s not your fault, and it’s not caused by outside forces. For example, a faulty engine block or suspension setup would be eligible for repairs under warranty.
However a van insurance policy is more suited to protection against accidents, such as damage you cause to a third party with your car or if your car is damaged or stolen by someone else. Unlike a warranty, having van insurance is a legal requirement – even if it’s the most basic level, which would be third party cover.
It can get trickier when they overlap: for example, if your brakes are faulty and this leads to you crashing into another car. Your warranty would cover the brakes, but your insurance will pay out for the damage caused to the other vehicle.
Will my van be eligible for a warranty?
Newer vans generally come with an existing warranty, however for older makes and models you should consider:
- Age: Some providers might not be able to cover your van with a warranty if it’s over a certain age, due to the higher risk of parts failing and replacements not being available
- Mileage: Providers may also have limits on the mileage you’ll be able to reach in your van before you won’t be able to claim on your policy
- MOT or servicing: You may need to show that your van has been serviced recently, while if you have an older van you might need to show a valid MOT certificate
What types of van warranty are there?
Depending on where you buy your van from, you might get one of the following types of van warranty:
- Manufacturer’s warranty: This is the warranty that comes with a new van, and in the UK they usually last for two to seven years. If you buy a used van from a manufacturer this may also come with a manufacturer’s warranty
- Independent dealer warranty: Independent dealer warranties are normally what you get if you buy your van from a dealer or garage. They don’t usually last as long as a manufacturer’s warranty - often a few months
- Extended warranty: You’ll also have the option of an extended warranty, which is a warranty policy you take out yourself
What does van warranty insurance cover?
The exact level of cover you’ll get from a van warranty will depend on the policy you take out as well as the provider you go to. Some providers offer different categories of cover, such as gold, silver, and platinum, so it’s important to read your policy document so you know exactly where you warranty can help you.
Generally speaking, you should aim for a van warranty that covers:
- Cooling system
You shouldn’t take anything for granted though, so it’s best to check with your provider by contacting them and familiarising yourself with any policy documents to make sure you take out the right warranty.
What extras can I add to my van warranty insurance policy?
Some van warranty policies will let you add certain extras to your cover if they aren’t already included, such as:
- Breakdown cover, which will give you access to roadside assistance if your van breaks down on the road
- European cover, which lets you claim for damaged parts if an incident arises while you’re driving in Europe
What isn’t covered by a van warranty?
Van warranties can be useful, however there are often some gaps in the cover they offer. For example, a warranty is unlikely to cover:
- Oil leaks: If a damaged part leads to an oil leak, your warranty may cover the part that was damaged but not any damage caused by the leaking oil
- Existing damage: If there is evidence that your van’s components were previously damaged or faulty then they may not be covered by your warranty
- Wear and tear: Not all providers cover the cost of certain components if they’re damaged due to wear and tear, when they do it’s likely to be at an extra cost. Many won’t pay out at all, which makes regular van maintenance just as important as a warranty and an insurance policy
- Cosmetics: A warranty is also unlikely to pay out for damage to features that are purely cosmetic
- Entertainment systems: Gadgets like monitors, stereos, and sat-navs won’t usually be covered by a van warranty policy
- Modifications: If you’ve modified your van this could potentially void your warranty policy – especially if you’ve used unapproved parts or materials. It’s best to consult your provider before making any changes to be sure
What else should I consider with a van warranty policy?
Aside from certain parts or components that might not be covered, you should also consider:
- Consequential loss: Consequential loss is generally defined as damage to an insured part of your van that’s caused by a failing component that isn’t covered. It’s best to clear this up with your provider to ensure you know where the cover applies
- Betterment: Betterment is when repairs to your van result in new parts being fitted that are better than the original. If betterment is the only option it may not be covered, and if it is covered you may be charged extra for the cover
- Garage choice: Some insurers may have a specific list of approved garages you can use to repair your car, and choosing one not on this list might void your cover
Can I transfer my warranty to another van?
Whether or not you can transfer your policy to another van during the warranty term will depend on your provider. You can always contact them, but there may be an administrative fee attached to the process.
How much does a van warranty policy cost?
The price you’ll pay for a van warranty will depend on a number of factors, including:
- Your age, as older and more experienced drivers are generally seen as a lower risk of claiming compared to younger drivers
- Your van, as heavier vans or those with bigger engines are seen as harder to drive, therefore increasing the risk of you getting into an accident and making a claim
- Your usage, as the more you intend to drive the van the higher the chance of you needing to claim
Compare van warranty quotes
If you’re looking for a van warranty policy, MoneySuperMarket can help you find the right deal. All you need to do is tell us and our preferred partner, Warranty Direct, about yourself, your van, and your driving history, and we’ll be able to give you a quote.