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What is the difference between a car warranty and car insurance? .

As a leading UK used car warranty provider, we’re frequently asked about the difference between car insurance and a car warranty. 

To minimise any confusion and help customers make an informed decision about their used car warranty purchases, we’ve highlighted the key differences. 

What is a used car warranty or an extended car warranty?

Businessman hand cover or protection red car toy on table. Car insurance, warranty, repair, Financial, banking and money concept

An extended or used car warranty is an agreement that can help pay for the financial cost of part failure and unexpected repairs, providing peace of mind after the manufacturer’s initial warranty has expired. While not legally compulsory, you might like to consider it a protective safety net for your vehicle.  

They are particularly valuable when a component fails while the car is in use. The warranty may cover the repair costs for the faulty part, providing much-needed relief to the driver. 

What is car insurance? 

Couple at side of the road exchanging car insurance details after traffic accident

Car insurance is a legal requirement in the UK and is designed to protect you financially in case of accidents, theft, damage to your vehicle, or liability to others.  

It typically covers events like collisions, vandalism, theft, and natural disasters, depending on the type of coverage you have (e.g., fully comprehensive, third-party, third-party fire and theft). Car insurance primarily deals with unforeseen incidents and is required by law to drive legally on the road. 

What is the benefit of a used car warranty? 

A recent YouGov report highlighted that 68% of motorists are anxious about potential breakdowns in their used cars, especially as auto repair costs have surged to an all-time high in 2023**. Surprisingly, the survey of over 2,000 used car owners uncovered that 78%—almost eight in ten people—do not safeguard their vehicles with an extended, used car-specific warranty. 

This is where an extended car warranty may step in, for unforeseen repair costs and part failures that may arise after the manufacturer’s warranty expires. It gives you peace of mind.

Used Car Maintenance. Auto Service Worker Preparing Vehicle For Scheduled Service.

Take note: Extended warranties vary so it’s important to review the warranty terms, limitations, and exclusions of the warranty plan to understand how the warranty operates. 

Key takeaways 

  • Used Car Warranty/Extended Warranty: A warranty purchased after the manufacturer’s safeguard warranty, for unexpected mechanical failure 
  • Car Insurance: Legal protection against accidents, theft, and damage, catering to a wider range of incidents. 

Balancing protection for your vehicle  

The best solution often involves a combination of both warranties and insurance.

Get a warranty you can be confident in with Warrantywise  

Warrantywise offers a warranty you can be confident in*. With over 23 years of industry experience, we’ll do all the hard work so you can stay in the driver’s seat. Start your quote today.  


**All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. The total sample size was 4,469 adults with 2,102 of those confirmed to own a used car between three to 12 years old. Fieldwork was undertaken between 12th – 14th July 2023.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults (aged 18+). 

Warrantywise and Warrantywise Logo are trademarks of Warrantywise. The website "" and contents herein are for information purposes only. This does not form part of any contract of protection. Any and all Warranty Plan confirmation including Warranty Plan Documents and Application Forms will be issued upon purchase. It is important that you read our information supplied and then make your own choice of warranty cover together with any plan additions that you may need as a vehicle owner who demands to ensure that your vehicle warranty requirements are met now and in the foreseeable future. Terms and Conditions apply and are provided by Warrantywise available to download here or upon request by calling 0800 169 7880. Warrantywise Limited (No. 07963594 ) and Warrantywise UK Limited (No. 14775172) both trading as Warrantywise are companies registered in England and Wales at The Rocket Centre, 3 Trident Way, Blackburn, Lancashire, BB1 3NU and both are part of Wise Group Holdings Limited, Company No. 10613336. Warrantywise Limited (VAT registration number 264 8618 71) and Warrantywise UK Limited (VAT registration number 437 8119 76) are VAT registered companies. All prices and monetary figures are quoted include VAT at the current rate.

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*Please refer to specific plan terms and conditions.