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What Does a Drivetrain Warranty Cover?

We’ve all likely received spam phone calls and emails about our vehicle’s warranty. Various warranties can protect you from a costly repair down the road. One option is a drivetrain warranty.

What does a drivetrain warranty cover, and should you have one on your vehicle?

Let’s get started and see!

What Is a Drivetrain Warranty?

A drivetrain warranty covers the parts of your vehicle that send power to your driving wheels, transmission, driveshaft, and axles. People can often get drivetrain warranties confused with a powertrain warranty covering parts like the engine, which powers your vehicle.

Even if you maintain your car and drive responsibly, you can still experience a major malfunction in your vehicle. Car part manufacturers are not always perfect. A faulty part can result in a massive repair bill. If your drivetrain warranty covers the parts and labor for your repair, you could save hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

What Does a Drivetrain Warranty Cover?

What exactly does a typical drivetrain warranty cover? It varies depending on the type of vehicle you’re driving. Let’s take a generalized look!

In Manual Transmission Vehicles

If you’re driving a manual transmission vehicle or one with a clutch where the driver controls the shifting, you’ll want to know what your drivetrain warranty covers.

Typically, this warranty may cover the rear axle, final drive, flywheel/clutch, gearbox, propeller shaft, and the vehicle’s differential. 

In Automatic Transmission Vehicles

Automatic transmission cars are often less challenging to drive. The car shifts and makes adjustments to the transmission as needed. These are some of the most common vehicles you’ll see on the road. However, the drivetrain warranty coverage typically covers different parts than the manual transmission vehicle warranty.

When you have a drivetrain warranty on an automatic vehicle, it’s typically going to cover the torque converter, transmission, propeller shaft, rear axle, and differential. Just because an automatic transmission works for you doesn’t mean it’s perfect. Many of these essential components can fail prematurely and leave you with a costly repair bill.

Man signing contract for car warranty.
Drivetrain warranties typically cover transmission, differential(s), axles, and other related components repairs.

What Does a Drivetrain Warranty Not Cover?

Drivetrain warranties only cover the parts and components that transfer power from the motor or engine to the wheels of your vehicle. These parts will vary depending on the type of transmission in the car.

Typically, a warranty will spell out what it covers in the contract. This is likely the transmission, differential(s), axles, and other related components. These types of warranties don’t cover your engine or any other parts of your vehicle. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the detailed list in your contract before signing.

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How Long Does Drivetrain Warranty Coverage Last?

A drivetrain warranty will last anywhere from five to 10 years or 60,000 to 100,000 miles. Coverage will depend on the manufacturer. However, you can purchase extended coverages through third-party warranty providers.

These warranties will vary significantly in the length of coverage and what exactly they cover.

Male and female mechanic repairing car.
The cost of a drivetrain warranty will ultimately outweigh the cost of massive repair bill.

How Much Does a Drivetrain Warranty Cost?

Drivetrain warranties typically come with a new or slightly used vehicle when purchasing from a dealer. These are built into the cost of the car and help provide the buyer security that they’re not going to be stuck with a massive repair bill once they pull off the lot.

Owners can purchase extended warranties that kick in once they reach the end of their manufacturer warranty coverage. These typically cost anywhere from $1000 to $1500 and, if purchased during the initial buying process, can get added into the vehicle’s monthly payment.

However, remember that you’re also financing the warranty, which means you’ll be paying interest on not only the vehicle but also the extended warranty.

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Drivetrain Vs. Powertrain: What’s the Difference?

The drivetrain and powertrain are different components of any vehicle. The powertrain includes most of your vehicle’s parts that make it move, including the engine itself. However, the drivetrain components typically transfer power from the engine to your car’s wheels.

Do You Need a Drivetrain Warranty?

Having a drivetrain warranty on your vehicle can be a comfort. You can drive knowing that if there’s an issue with your drivetrain, you shouldn’t be stuck with a massive repair bill. Once you reach the end of your warranty, an extended warranty isn’t a bad option.

You’ll want to make sure that you know what the contract includes. While some warranties may cover the parts, they may not include the labor, which can sometimes be equally expensive. Before you agree to any warranties, make sure you’re aware of what you’re purchasing.

Do you buy extended warranties on your vehicles? Tell us about your experience in the comments!

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