Buying motorcycle warranties differs slightly from the extended warranty a motorist might purchase for a car. Sure, there might be a motorcycle roadside assistance clause, but did you know that your use of the motorbike might actually void the coverage?
1. Off-road motorcycles are (generally) covered by a very short warranty.
In an effort to regulate the emission of off-road motorcycles, the EPA explains that due to the intended use, especially competition off-road motorcycles only carry a 30-day warranty — in most cases. Its coverage extends to manufacturer defects only.
Tip: Inquire about competition limitations when buying a motorcycle warranty. The maker may absolve itself from any problems it associates with user-error or competitive riding.
2. Your bike’s manufacturer may already offer an extended warranty.
When buying a new bike, check with your state’s department of motor vehicles. It enumerates the rules of vehicle sales in your area. For example, California’s DMV specifies that a new conveyance carries a manufacturer’s extended warranty. Even so, dealers may encourage you to consider buying motorcycle warranties that they offer — at a cost.
Tip: Ask if an extended warranty covers motorcycle roadside assistance and complements a manufacturer contract rather than merely duplicating it.
3. Buying a motorcycle warranty, if you are a Sunday rider, is a waste of money.
If the amount of riding you do mimics most folks’ church attendance — the occasional Sunday and usually on major holidays — an extended warranty is a waste of money. Set up a common-sense maintenance regimen instead to prevent the problems that could crop up. On the flipside, if your bike is your daily driver to work or school, consider extended motorcycle warranties a bit of insurance for tomorrow’s functionality.
Tip: Check the warranty deductible. If it is more than you spend each month in motorcycle maintenance and gas — and you do not ride a lot — it’s a waste of cash.
4. Does your bike’s manufacturer spell out the definition of “normal wear and tear?”
Buying motorcycle warranties is unique in that the abilities of the bikes — going really fast really quickly — are frequently not considered ‘normal’ when it comes to wear and tear exclusions on the extended warranty contract.
Tip: Check over the warranty to see if the manufacturer spells out the terms of ‘normal wear and tear.’ If they are not stated, get an official definition in writing.
5. Myth Alert: Dealer-underwritten extended motorcycle warranties provide the coverage they promise.
Take a warning from the Ducati motorcycle forum. Falling for the salesman’s spiel, one rider bought a five-year extended warranty. Three years into the contract, the dealership no longer had its Ducati certification. Not surprisingly, it refused to honor the extended warranty.
Tip: If you must buy a warranty, try to get one from the manufacturer and not the dealer. Dealer warranties can lead to headaches.
EPA: “Characterization of Off-Road Motorcycle Use”
California DMV: “What You Need to Know When Buying a Vehicle”
Ducati Monster: “Get extended Warranty?”