Over the last few years I have taken advantage of the extended warranties available from various stores like Noel Leeming, Harvey Norman, Dick Smith and Farmers. They all seem to have different names, but all seem to amount to an extended warranty.
The problem is they don’t always do what you might expect, or at least what I had expected.
The following is my understanding of the situation and should not be taken as “gospel”.
Extended warranty ends with replacement product.
I can’t talk for all warranties but I understand that with both Noel Leeming and Farmers, when you receive a replacement product or refund your extended warranty ceases and you are left with the warranty on the new replacement product.
To give an example. I bought a Samsung camera from Noel Leemings and got a 5 year extended cover and it went faulty a little over a year later. As it was outside the manufacturers warranty it was covered by the Noel Leeming “Supercover” and since it was below a certain price point the automatic action is a replacement item. As it happened I chose to get my money back but lets assume I got a similar replacement camera. At the end of the exercise It was a little over 1 year after I bought the initial camera and I now had a working camera but I was left with a warranty of 1 year so effectively I was going to be outside warranty status a little over 2 years after the initial camera purchase.
When I bought the camera with the extended warranty I had, perhaps naively, thought that by getting a 5 year warranty I would be guaranteed a working camera for 5 years. Sadly this was not to be.
Just how long is that warranty
It appears a 5 year warranty can mean different things. Apparently a 5 year warranty with either Noel Leeming or Farmers means a total of 5 years from the date of purchase. So if the product has a 2 year manufactures warranty then the extended warranty is for 3 years after the manufacturers warranty.
With Harvey Norman a 3 year warranty is 3 years in addition to the manufacturers warranty. So if the product has a 2 year manufactures warranty then a 3 year Harvey Norman warranty is equivalent to a 5 year Noel Leeming one.
So why bother
You might say with all the above issues why bother. Well from my personal experience, mostly with Noel Leeming, I often come out ahead – if you excuse the loss of cover by the extended warranty ceasing with replacement.
We recently had a vertical freezer fail after slightly less than 4 years. Had we had an extended warranty, of say $100, we could have got it fixed straight away. As it is we have to shell out over $800+ for a replacement.
I have to say my experience with Noel Leeming’s SuperCover has been excellent, no arguments no hassles. Incidentially you should always consider “Match the completion” with Noel Leeming because they definitely do this. I have had reductions of hundreds of dollars and over 50%.