Most TVs sold now come with a warranty, although sometimes you will be asked if you would like to buy a warranty or even an extended warranty. If you look closely at the fine print you might be amazed at how complex and confusing the language can be and you might also notice that parts are covered for a much longer period of time than labour. Choosing between a warranty, an extended warranty, and an insurance policy can be daunting. We have put together a brief guide to TV warranties to help you make an informed decision on how to protect your TV.
What is a TV Warranty?
Warranties are issued by the manufacturer (or occasionally the retailer) as a guarantee of repairs or replacements should your TV break. A good or lengthy warranty is often seen as a sign of a good product because it means the manufacturer believes there will be no further expenses on the TV for the duration of the warranty. For instance, if a company offers TV1 with a 10-year warranty, you can assume it is better than TV2 and its one year warranty simply because the manufacturer is saying they will cover the costs if TV1 breaks for 10 times longer than TV2.
But warranties can get tricky too and manufacturers know that if they use enough technical or legal jargon they can convince you that their product is good without actually covering everything you might want covered. A lot of warranties will only cover specific faults and have something called a “dead-pixel threshold”. This simply means that if you have one dead pixel in the middle of your screen – that tiny black spec that won’t go away – it won’t be covered for repairs by your warranty simply because it isn’t a high enough percentage of pixel damage.
Because warranties are offered by manufacturers they also won’t cover accidental damage. This is an important thing to remember, especially if you have children or if your TV is in a place where there is a higher chance of accidental damage. For example a TV in a kitchen has a higher chance of damage caused by spills, splashes, or burns.
A lot of warranties come with a few months of parts replacements and about a year of labour cover. This means that if something breaks seven months in you might still have to fork out a lot of money to pay for parts even though the labour is still covered. There is also no notification so you might not realise that your warranty has expired until it’s too late and you find yourself with an unexpectedly broken TV and no cover.
At the end of the day, a warranty is designed to pad the manufacturer’s bottom line and protect them, not you. However, depending on what you want, and if you are willing to wade through a lot of confusing fine print, you may be able to find the right product and warranty for you.
What is an Extended TV Warranty?
An extended warranty offers the same as a normal warranty, but you can secure it over a longer period of time. These can be better if you are happy with the level of cover and the parts and labour are covered for the same amount of time. The limitations, however, stay the same, and you are still not fully protected for all faults, breakdowns, and accidental damage.
What is TV Insurance?
TV insurance is an answer to all the gaps in TV warranties. Comprehensive cover will make sure that electrical and mechanical faults are repaired, as well as damage caused by accidents. Insurance is also ongoing so you decide when your cover starts and when it stops, and your insurer will notify you if it is going to expire so that you can choose to renew and maintain your level of protection.
TV insurance is often more tailored than warranties as well. Because a warranty is created for a specific product, it doesn’t take into account the consumer, only the TV. A good insurance policy, such as those offered by Prominence Support, will take into account the person who owns the TV, their situation, and their needs.
Where does that leave me?
At the end of the day you will need to decide if you are happy with a warranty or if you want more comprehensive cover. Insurance may look more expensive but if something goes wrong you are guaranteed no extra fees or hidden costs. Insurance offers far more comprehensive cover and peace of mind than a warranty and is usually much simpler to use.