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Common exclusions in standard manufacturer warranties

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Manufacturer warranties can often be riddled with fine print and obscured to the consumer. However, there are some common themes across most warranties in terms of what they will and will not cover. This article will outline common exclusions so that you can have a deeper understanding of what coverage you have for your products, and how to gain additional protection.

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What does a manufacturer warranty cover?

Your purchases that come with a manufacturer warranty hold a guarantee from the maker that your product will perform to a specified standard for a set duration of time. This means that they will cover repairs or replacements for issues that arise that can be attributed to a manufacturing fault. Typically, this warranty will outline the type of replacements the manufacturer will perform, as well as the timeframe they'll provide coverage for.

What is not included in your manufacturer warranty?

While standard defects that result from manufacturing errors are covered to protect the consumer, most issues that arise as a result of use are in fact not covered. Here are some common exclusions:

  • Wear and tear. It is natural that any item used extensively over a period of time will wear out or get run down from exposure to the elements, travel, and consistent use. This wear and tear is not typically covered by a manufacturer warranty, as it is a result of customer behavior and not attributable to an issue from the manufacturer. This is especially relevant for items like tires, which are expected to wear down over time. Some suppliers offer better coverage than others. For example the Costco tire warranty is extensive, but stipulates that you must have been taking proper care of your items and meet all of their requirements.
  • Accidents. If you accidentally smash the door of your fridge, drop your tabletop, or snap your chair while moving, for example, your items won’t be covered by a manufacturer warranty. These events are circumstances that result from the customer’s lifestyle rather than an inherent fault in the making of the product. The Walmart tire warranty is a relevant example, as they have detailed conditions that any claim must meet to prove that it was the fault of the manufacturer.
  • Spills. This is most common when it comes to furniture and electronics. If you stain your couch, or drop water on your laptop, you will not be covered by the manufacturer warranty because these mistakes are considered accidents, even when the result in the item no longer working.
  • Breaks and drops. If you snap or crack part of your product, especially an electronics screen, you're likely not covered by a manufacturer warranty, as it's an accident that can be attributed to the consumer. For example, if you have a Best Buy laptop warranty through Geek Squad, you will have extended coverage, but it still won’t include events like accidentally smashing a screen.
  • Infinite coverage. A warranty void means the period of coverage has expired. Warranties typically don’t last forever, so you should not expect lifetime coverage on any of your items unless it has been specifically stated. For example, with a Vizio TV warranty, you will only gain coverage for 1-year from the date of purchase.
  • Theft and loss. These mishaps are not covered by a warranty, and instead are under the jurisdiction of an insurance plan.

How do you get coverage for everything that is excluded from a manufacturer warranty?

To gain extended coverage for accidental damage including breaks, spills, and screen cracks, you can purchase additional product protection by subscribing to Mulberry Unlimited. You'll be able to get coverage for all your online purchases under the same product protection plan for just $9.99 a month.

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Mulberry is on a mission to help consumers protect the things they buy while saving on everyday financial products. The Mulberry browser extension allows consumers to get free 1-year product protection plans wherever they shop online, plus savings on extended coverage and other financial products.

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