Buick extended warranty: cost, coverage and plans
Not cost-effective — or necessary — considering Buick’s above-average reliability
Before there was GM or Chevrolet, there was Buick. Dating back to 1903, Buick now represents an upgrade for most American car buyers, so it makes sense for owners to consider protecting their purchases with an extended warranty plan. Buick even offers its own official extended warranty program, but how does it stack up?
We’ll cover what these plans cost, what kinds of repairs they cover and whether they’re worth it overall.
- Buick named its official extended warranties Buick Protection Plans, and they cover the cost of repairing new and used Buicks for up to eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first.
- There are three plan options: Platinum, Silver and Powertrain, but we couldn’t even find a Buick dealer willing to sell us Silver or Powertrain plans.
- Buick Protection Plans cost between $800 and $1,000 per year of coverage beyond your factory warranty. Considering Buicks are pretty reliable and only average an estimated $608 in maintenance and repairs each year, these warranties likely aren’t cost-effective.
- You may find a better deal on similar coverage from a top-rated third-party warranty provider.
Buick extended warranty coverage
Buick’s official extended warranties (aka vehicle service contracts) are called Buick Protection Plans. These plans cover up to 1,500 parts for up to eight years or 100,000 miles (whichever comes first) and are essentially designed to extend your two main Buick factory warranties, which provide three years or 36,000 miles of bumper-to-bumper protection and five years or 60,000 miles of powertrain protection.
Keep in mind that auto warranties only cover the cost of fixing factory defects. They almost never cover repairs needed due to collision damage, weather damage, abuse, neglect or most other scenarios.
As for Buick Protection Plans, most Buick vehicles will be eligible for protection as long as they’re less than 7 model years old and have fewer than 100,000 miles on their odometers.
You can only purchase Buick Protection Plans from a Buick dealership, and not every dealership sells them (some only partner with third-party warranty companies). So, you may have to call around to find a dealer that does.
» LEARN: What does a car warranty cover?
Buick extended warranty plans
Buick Protection Plans come in three coverage levels: Powertrain, Silver and Platinum. Platinum is like your factory bumper-to-bumper warranty, while Powertrain extends your factory powertrain warranty. Silver offers something in between.
Check out the chart below for a more detailed breakdown of what each plan covers. (You may need to scroll on the chart to see it in full).
The dealers we spoke with have some strong feelings about the Silver and Powertrain plans that we’ve shared below.
Buick extended warranty cost
For context, the average extended auto warranty costs $2,500, give or take, depending on the make, model and age of your vehicle. So, how do Buick Protection Plans stack up? To find out, we called a dozen Buick dealers around the country to collect the lowest possible quotes and included the results in the table below.
Collecting quotes from different warranty providers is critical if you want to make sure you’re getting a good deal.
A few things to note before reading that chart:
- All plans were quoted based on a $100 deductible.
- One dealer also gave us quotes from a third-party warranty company called Zurich, so we went ahead and included those numbers here as well (you’ll see more third-party options toward the end of this piece).
- You won’t see quotes for Silver or Powertrain plans because every Buick dealer we spoke with either no longer sold those plans or simply didn’t want to sell them to us.
“They’re a few hundred bucks less than Platinum,” said one dealer, “but we don’t like selling them or even quoting them because our service guys are tired of getting yelled at.”
This dealer was likely referring to the fact that customers on Silver or Powertrain plans are often disappointed to learn that an expensive repair won’t be covered by their more limited plans.
We don’t like selling [Silver or Powertrain plans] or even quoting them because our service guys are tired of getting yelled at.”
Buick Protection Plan costs
Check out the best quotes we got from Buick dealers below.
|Vehicle||Coverage||Term||Cost (Buick Protection Plan)||Cost (Zurich extended warranty)|
|2023 Enclave||Platinum||6 years/100,000 miles||$3,822||$2,900|
|2023 Enclave||Platinum||7 years/100,000 miles||$3,991||$3,200|
|2023 Enclave||Platinum||8 years/100,000 miles||$4,166||N/A|
|2022 Encore||Platinum||6 years/100,000 miles||$3,511||$2,800|
|2019 LaCrosse||Platinum||4 years/48,000 miles||$3,220||$3,300|
All things considered, these are some pricey extended warranties, especially considering that, for vehicles with a factory warranty remaining, the term of the Buick Protection Plan retroactively starts from Mile 0 — not their current mileage.
That means the seven-year Platinum plan on a 2023 Buick Enclave really only provides a maximum of four extra years of bumper-to-bumper protection, since the first three are covered by the factory warranty. $1,000 per year of coverage is high for an extended warranty, and to make the warranty “worth it,” you’ll need to average over $1,000 in unplanned, covered repairs per year. (And that’s not even including your $100 deductible per visit to the mechanic.)
Buick extended warranty benefits
All Buick Protection Plans feature the following benefits in addition to covering repairs:
- Roadside assistance, including battery service, flat tire assistance, emergency fuel delivery (up to three gallons three times), emergency fluid delivery (cost of fluids not included) and lockout assistance
- Towing assistance of up to $100 per occurrence for a covered breakdown
- Rental car coverage of up to $40 daily for 10 days while your Buick is in the shop for a covered repair
- Trip interruption protection of up to $200 per day for up to five days if your Buick experiences a covered breakdown more than 100 miles from home
Overall these are above-average benefits for an extended auto warranty from a major manufacturer. Up to $1,000 in trip interruption assistance is a nice touch and should provide extra peace of mind if you frequently road-trip in your Buick.
Buick extended warranty terms and conditions
The Buick Protection Plan terms and conditions are pretty standard for an extended auto warranty. We’ve listed the highlights below, but it’s always smart to read your warranty contract carefully before signing.
- Preexisting conditions
- As with virtually all extended warranties, preexisting conditions won’t be covered. In addition, unless you’re the first owner of your Buick, there’s a 30-day/1,000-mile waiting period before you can submit your first claim (that time is added back on the tail end of the warranty period).
Warranty providers can sometimes deny claims on the basis that you can’t prove an issue wasn’t preexisting, which is why it’s best to get a dealer inspection report (about $150) in tandem with any extended auto warranty purchase.
- Routine maintenance
- As part of your warranty agreement, you must keep up with the routine maintenance schedule listed in your Buick owners manual. There’s typically something recommended every six months, whether it’s an oil change, an alignment or something else designed to keep your vehicle running smoothly.
Buick may ask for proof that you kept up with regular maintenance before approving any claim, so be sure to keep your receipts, too.
- Typical exclusions apply, meaning Buick Protection Plans won’t cover:
- Part failures due to damage, negligence or abuse
- Regular wear-and-tear items. like brake pads and windshield wiper blades
- Most cosmetic items
Platinum plans also won’t cover any part listed under “EXCLUSIONS” in your contract’s terms and conditions.
- If you sell your Buick to a private party, you can transfer the remaining extended warranty period to the new owner within 30 days of the sale by contacting Buick and paying a $50 transfer fee.
- Cancellations and refunds
- You can cancel your Buick Protection Plan within 30 days of purchase for a full refund, provided that you haven’t filed any claims. If you have filed a claim or it’s been longer than 30 days, you’ll receive a prorated refund minus any claims paid.
Is a Buick extended warranty worth it?
Given the high cost per year of added coverage, a Buick Protection Plan probably isn’t worth the cost. However, it could be in some cases. Let us explain.
As a general rule, an extended auto warranty is more likely to be worth it if any of the following is true:
- Your car has below-average expected reliability.
- The cost of the extended warranty is less than you’d expect to spend on the repairs it would cover.
- Getting hit with a large surprise repair bill could ruin you financially.
- You don’t mind paying a few thousand dollars for extra peace of mind.
Since points three and four vary from person to person, we’ll provide some context to help you decide where you stand in relation to points one and two.
For starters, Buicks are reportedly pretty reliable these days. J.D. Power ranked the brand fourth out of 32 automakers for dependability in 2023, while Consumer Reports placed it 11th out of 24 brands in 2022.
Reviewers generally seem happy with their Buicks, as well.
Holly, a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from Pennsylvania, said, “In the 3 years I have owned my Encore I have not had one problem. Great size, easy to handle, stable on the highway and easy to park. It is also practical because you can lower the back seats to carry large items. The back door allows for easy access to the cargo area.”
No car is perfect, however, and we’ve also seen plenty of reviews showing that your experience may vary.
Anna, a ConsumerAffairs reviewer from Michigan, wrote, “For the past 8 months, I have only been able to drive my Buick for 2 weeks at a time without having serious issues. The engine light will come on and I get the following error messages: reduced engine power, max speed 32 mph, traction control off, service StabiliTrak. The first time this happened, I was on the interstate driving 75 mph!”
As for the expected cost of repairs, RepairPal estimates that, on average, Buick vehicles incur just $608 in unplanned repairs and scheduled maintenance bills each year. That’s $44 below the industry average, which is impressive, considering Buick is marketed as an upscale brand.
It also raises the question of why Buick Protection Plans are so expensive. The plans cost roughly $1,000 per year of coverage (that isn’t covered by the factory warranty), which is likely $400-plus more than the repairs they’re intended to cover. Factor in the $100 deductible, and you have to have some seriously bad luck with your Buick to make a Buick Protection Plan worth the cost.
That kind of bad luck can happen (a covered engine or transmission replacement could completely offset the cost of your warranty on its own), but the data we’ve seen indicates that they’re not common enough to make a Buick Protection Plan worth it unless you have a special reason to expect a major repair.
The scales may tip in the other direction if you can get a better deal on your warranty, though.
Buick extended warranty alternatives
Let’s see if some of our best extended car warranty companies can offer similar coverage for less. We collected quotes from Endurance and olive and compared them with the quotes we received from Buick dealers for similar coverage. You can see how they stacked up below.
Based on these results, it seems likely that you’ll be able to find similar coverage for less by going with a third-party warranty company. However, that may not always be the case, and thanks to Buick’s rising reliability, extended warranty coverage may not be worth it at all.
The best way to know for sure is to get quotes from multiple extended warranty providers and compare them with your expected costs, then make an educated decision based on your personal financial situation.
For more on extended auto warranties — what they cover, how to shop for one and how to avoid scams — check out our hub for extended auto warranty content.
» STEP-BY-STEP: How to choose an extended car warranty
- Article sources
- ConsumerAffairs writers primarily rely on government data, industry experts and original research from other reputable publications to inform their work. Specific sources for this article include:
- J.D. Power, “Vehicle Dependability Improves Despite Continued Problems with Technology, J.D. Power Finds.” Accessed April 24, 2023.
- Consumer Reports, “Who Makes the Most Reliable New Cars?” Accessed April 24, 2023.
- RepairPal, “Buick Repair & Maintenance Costs.” Accessed April 24, 2023.
You’re signed up
We’ll start sending you the news you need delivered straight to you. We value your privacy. Unsubscribe easily.