What Home Warranties Do and Do Not Cover

Jordan SteinbergJul 20, 2017

What Is a Home Warranty?

A home warranty is a service contract that will help repair or replace systems and appliances in your home. It is meant to protect homeowners from unexpectedly high costs resulting from sudden failures.

When taking out a home warranty plan, bear in mind that the number of covered items directly reflects the resulting premium. Oftentimes, homeowners make the mistake of opting for a specific home warranty plan because it has a lower-cost premium. While this may be a good idea in the short-term, such plans may unfortunately leave homeowners high and dry when common home appliances or systems break down, and find themselves in need of repair or replacement.

Home warranty plans that provide good coverage for home systems and appliances are not necessarily expensive. For instance, there is no need to pay higher premiums for expanded coverage if you only require the basic essentials. As a result, when deciding between home warranty options, make sure to carefully read the policy’s fine print before purchase, so as to have a clear idea of what is and is not covered.

What Do Home Warranties Cover?

Although specific coverage will vary based on location, basic home warranty policies will cover common appliances and systems. Typically, these common items will include:

  • Air conditioning units
  • Refrigerators
  • Ovens
  • Dishwashers
  • Clothes washers and dryers
  • Garbage disposals
  • Trash Compactors
  • Toilets
  • Water heaters
  • Ceiling Fans
  • Smoke Detectors
  • Built-in Microwaves
  • Doorbells
  • Humidifiers

While home warranty plans are an excellent way of helping us during costly appliance repairs and replacements, remember that coverage is only limited to damage caused by normal wear and tear. Within that set criteria, most home warranty coverage will allow for the repair and replacement of vital parts needed for normal operation of appliances and systems. On the other hand, non-essential parts and removable accessories do not typically fall within the warranty’s scope.

What Do Home Warranties Not Cover?

If a specific, and necessary, item is not included in the basic warranty, then an enhanced warranty may be a worthwhile investment. The cost of an enhanced plan, with its wider range of coverage options, can span anywhere from an additional $100 to $600, on top of that of the standard plan.

Depending on the company, certain commonly covered items, such as washers and dryers, will be placed under the purview of enhanced coverage. These uncovered systems and appliances may include the following:

  • Plumbing fixtures
  • Faucet repairs
  • Pools/Hot tubs
  • Sprinkler systems
  • Outdoor water systems
  • Combo ceiling fans
  • Ice makers
  • Well Pumps
  • Central Vacuums
  • Septic systems
  • Stand Alone Freezers
  • Home entertainment system
  • Wine cooler

Be aware if your plan places a limit to how much it covers annually. With that in mind, be sure to consult not only with a policy’s specific terms and conditions, but also the company itself. In the latter case, our top home warranty providers would be more than happy to assist.