Beware: Extended Vehicle Warranty ads

Every now and then I get a similar letter in the mail:


EXPIRED WARRANTY

2003 Pontiac, Buick, Chevrolet or Oldsmobile

Dear Consumer,

This notice is to inform you that if you own a Pontiac, Buick, Chevrolet or Oldsmobile, your factory vehicle warranty has expired or may be about to expire…. blah-blah-blah Buy an extended vehicle warranty from us!!!!!!

I find this kind of advertisement very blatant, misleading and improper. Why?

  • These guys are not even sure I own the vehicle anymore (and actually, I don’t)
  • I started getting this kind of letters about 18 months after I purchased the vehicle. Having in mind that the original factory warranty is 36 months and that this new warranty starts from the day you purchase it, you might be losing half of your original (and free) warranty by being duped to pay for this new service.
  • I could not exactly reproduce the letter – but the part telling you that your warranty has expired is definitely sticking out from the rest of the text, and the sentence that follows and is probably there mainly for legal reasons is very plain. Again – gullible consumer duped into believing stuff and shedding unnecessary money…
  • It is not usually clear who is sending the letter. The return address on the envelope is usually something very generic (and not suspicious) – Warranty Providers [this name was totally made up by me], etc. This current one is from a similar company whose logo closely resembles the logo of one of the huge automakers. So if you’re
    not careful, you would think this is something coming from your vehicle manufacturer…
  • All the offers are so incredible and so extreme and so __ [put anything here] that you are urged to call and order in the next 24 or 48 hours. These guys know that if you don’t have time to research and compare they could sell you anything at whatever price.
  • The small-font-conditions are written in a very small size font 🙂

My advice – do not order anything from spammers like this who on top of everything else would do anything to mislead you. If you are in dire need of extended warranty, talk to your vehicle manufacturer, a dealer or just take the time to do some research online and see what would suit you best.

P.S. I just filed this letter in my recycle bin ;-).

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