CarShield Extended Car Warranty [Review + Guide]
Extended warranties can give car owners peace of mind, helping to cover unexpected repairs. However, there are several providers to choose from.
CarShield is one well-known option that claims to offer the ultimate vehicle service protection. For over a decade, they’ve covered 1 million vehicles and administered paid claims of over $1 billion dollars.
Read on to learn more about CarShield and if their warranties make sense for you.
Table of Contents
- What Is CarShield Extended Warranty?
- How to File a Claim with CarShield
- What Does CarShield Auto Warranty Cover?
- What Does CarShield Auto Warranty Not Cover?
- How Much Does CarShield Car Warranty Cost?
- CarShield Warranty Coverage Plans
- Which CarShield Warranty Plan Should I Get?
- CarShield Review – The Good & Bad
- CarShield Customer Reviews & Complaints
- Alternatives to CarShield Extended Warranty
- Best Car Deals by Category
- Frequently Asked Questions
Disclosure: I sometimes receive compensation from referrals to companies I mention, but that does not impact my opinions and helps keep this website going. And I only recommend providers that will genuinely benefit my readers.
What Is CarShield Extended Warranty?
CarShield is an independent warranty provider. It offers flexible plans and month-to-month contracts.
The company was founded in 2005 in Missouri as a vehicle service contract broker. CarShield has a reputation for being affordable and offering several different deductible options.
Can I Trust CarShield Warranty?
One of the biggest customer concerns about extended warranties is that they may not cover what they claim to. While CarShield provides several levels of warranties, there are questions about its trustworthiness.
CarShield is not BBB accredited. In fact, the Better Business Burea specifically recommends that “consumers use caution if considering doing business with CarShield.” The BBB has received several consumer complaints that state:
- Misleading advertising
- Failure to cover repairs
- Failure to explain mileage and time restrictions before coverage
- Not canceling policies or providing refunds
- Delay in claims processing
- Poor customer service
How Does CarShield Work?
CarShield extended warranties operate like vehicle service contracts. Essentially, the company operates as a service broker.
Another company provides the services that CarShield plans offer. For example, some contracts use American Auto Shield as an administrative service.
What Is Shield Repair Network?
The Shield Repair Network is CarShield’s preferred network. When consumers use the network, they get access to dedicated customer service, ASE-certified facilities, and faster claims processing.
However, customers are not required to use the network. They can choose another repair facility. Furthermore, the repair network does not guarantee coverage.
How to File a Claim with CarShield
First, take your vehicle to an ASE-certified mechanic to assess the issues. If the car is not functional, then you can call 1-866-222-7869 for roadside assistance and/or towing.
To file a claim with CarShield, you must head to their online portal or call them at 1-800-531-1925. You should file the claim BEFORE any work is done on the vehicle. It must be approved prior to any work on the car.
After you file the claim, the shop will communicate with the agent to determine if the repair is covered.
You can check the status of your claim by calling 1-800-531-1925 or contacting customer service at 1-800-587-4162.
CarShield assesses if the claim is covered by your plan based on information from the mechanic. If the claim is accepted, then they'll approve the mechanic to make the repairs. You must pay your deductible and any charges your plan does not cover.
What Does CarShield Auto Warranty Cover?
Each CarShield plan provides slightly different coverage options. Some of the general benefits include:
- Drive axel
- Water pump
What Does CarShield Auto Warranty Not Cover?
There are a few things that no CarShield plan covers. Some examples of things not covered include:
- Aesthetic parts
- Modified/altered parts
- Wear-and-tear parts (air filters, brake pads)
- Auto repairs made without pre-authorization
- Damage caused by lack of proper maintenance, nature, collision, or vandalism.
How Much Does CarShield Car Warranty Cost?
The average cost of a CarShield plan varies from $99.99 to $129.99 per month. Ultimately, the prices vary depending on the plan you choose as well as your vehicle condition.
In addition to the cost of the plan, you must also pay for the deductible (even if the claim is accepted). Your actual deductible may vary, but CarShield often quotes around a $100 deductible.
CarShield Warranty Coverage Plans
CarShield offers six different types of warranties. Here’s a brief breakdown of each plan:
The Diamond coverage adheres to most of the same coverage as the new factory warranty. It only lists the parts that are excluded from coverage. Most often, aesthetic parts are not covered, as well as belts, hoses, trim, and wear items.
The platinum plan covers the cooling system, engine, transmission, setting, brakes, and more. It lists details of each part of the systems it covers.
The gold plan provides enhanced powertrain coverage. It covers the alternator, power window motor, transmission, drive axle, and engine.
The basic powertrain plan is “Silver.” The Silver plan covers the drive axle, lubricated engine parts, the water pump, and transmission.
The Aluminum plan is ideal for vehicles with complicated electronic systems, including luxury vehicles. Coverage includes:
- Power seat control
- Voice activation control
- LCD screens
- Cruise control
- Instrument clusters
Motorcycle & ATV
Specialty coverage for ATVs and motorcycles.
Roadside Protection Bundle
CarShield also offers an emergency roadside assistance program. It covers drivers for a maximum of 3 events during the monthly benefit period. Coverage includes:
- Emergency tire service
- Lockout service
- Battery service
- Fuel delivery
Which CarShield Warranty Plan Should I Get?
What Is The Best CarShield Extended Warranty for New Cars?
The Diamond plan is ideal for new cars. It has coverage most similar to the manufacturer’s warranty. It covers all systems, except those listed as uncovered. This provides the most comprehensive coverage, which is ideal for newer vehicles.
What Is the Best CarShield Extended Warranty for Used Cars?
If you have an older or high-mileage used vehicle, then consider the Platinum plan. This plan covers the key parts of the vehicle’s engine, transmission, cooling, AC, and more. The contract lists each part covered. Overall, it provides holistic coverage that is good for used vehicles.
CarShield Review – The Good & Bad
CarShield Pros: Here’s What I Like
- Can choose from many certified repair shops
- CarShield directly pays the repair shop.
- 24/7 roadside assistance.
- Can transfer most contracts to new car owners.
- Monthly pricing.
- Unlimited coverage periods.
- Several plan offerings.
- Coverage for unique vehicles like motorcycles and ATVs.
CarShield Cons: Here’s What I Don’t Like
- Some concerning negative reviews.
- Lack of BBB accreditation.
- All plans do not include rental car reimbursement.
- Plans can be confusing to understand.
- Long agent wait times.
CarShield Customer Reviews & Complaints
CarShield has a fairly strong customer reputation, despite the complaints with the BBB. The company has 4.1 out of 5 stars on Google, from nearly 9,000 reviews. On Trustpilot, CarShield has 4.0 out of 5 stars from over 23,000 reviews.
Positive reviews cite the ease of submitting and earning a claim. They talk about helpful agents and accurately paid claims.
Yet, many negative reviews state the exact opposite. Many are frustrated certain things are not covered or claim they were not accurately informed about their coverage ahead of time.
Ultimately, the CarShield customer experience is good overall, but customers have experienced both sides of the spectrum.
Alternatives to CarShield Extended Warranty
While CarShield is a good overall option for affordable extended warranties, it’s not the only choice. Here are the top alternatives to CarShield:
- Endurance: It directly provides extended warranties, fulfilling most claims without outside help. Endurance also offers 6 levels of coverage and 24/7 roadside assistance. Check out our Endurance review.
- YAA: YAA has a "consumer-first" approach to its extended warranties. They are very transparent in their pricing structure and have great customer service. Check out out YAA review.
- CARCHEX: CARCHEX provides 5 levels of coverage and many helpful perks (like roadside assistance and rental care reimbursement). Overall, they are a good option for used cars. Check out our CARCHEX review.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is CarShield worth the money?
If you have adequate cash flow and savings to cover unexpected (potentially expensive) car repairs, then you may not need a CarShield extended warranty. However, those looking to ensure a predictable budget can benefit from CarShield’s services. Based on a positive customer rating, CarShield is a strong option for extended warranties.
How can I cancel my CarShield plan?
Since CarShield offers month-to-month contracts, you can cancel the plan anytime. You must submit a written cancelation request with a notarized odometer statement to American Auto Shield. To start your cancellation, contact CarShield’s customer service line at 1-800-587-4162.
Which is better, CarShield or CARCHEX?
Both CarShield and CARCHEX offer several levels of extended warranty coverage. While CARCHEX is BBB accredited with an A+ rating, they have a much lower consumer review rating than CarShield. Based on consumer reviews, CarShield is the better choice. However, you should consider quotes and policies from both providers to choose the best option for you.
How does CarShield pay claims?
CarShield pays claims directly to the auto repair shop. You must pay the deductible and any non-covered repairs.
Where can I go for repairs that are covered by CarShield?
You can choose any certified repair shop or dealership for your repairs. However, you must get approval for your claim before having any work done.
Can I get CarShield for old used cars?
Yes, you can get a CarShield extended warranty for older vehicles. Keep in mind that the cost of your plan and deductible is based on several factors, including the car’s current condition and age.
Does CarShield include maintenance coverage?
No, CarShield does not cover maintenance. At this time, they do not have preventative maintenance offerings. Yet, failure to adhere to proper maintenance can prevent your claims from being covered.