What Voids Your Car Warranty?

Kia warranty coverage overview

The Kia warranty covers most repairs and replacements of parts that break down due to defects in workmanship or materials. The South Korea-based carmaker offers above-average coverage lengths — new owners receive powertrain coverage for 10 years/100,000 miles and bumper-to-bumper coverage for 5 years/60,000 miles. New Kias also receive 24/7 emergency roadside assistance for the same length as the bumper-to-bumper warranty.

Kia warranty term lengths are some of the longest in the business. The brand’s powertrain, bumper-to-bumper and roadside assistance terms are only matched by a few other automakers, such as  Hyundai and Mitsubishi. Where Kia falls behind is corrosion protection — it ties with Ford and Toyota on the lower end of warranty coverage lengths. Our team reached out to Kia for a comment on its corrosion protection limits but did not receive a response.

Here’s a breakdown of the Kia factory warranty that comes with all new vehicles:

What Does an Extended Warranty Cover?

Car dealerships and third-party providers offer extended warranties to help car owners save money on repairs after their factory warranties expire. Depending on the age and mileage of your vehicle, you might qualify for up to 150,000 miles of coverage through Kia’s  Distinction Vehicle Service Contract .

Kia offers three different warranty plans:

  • Platinum
  • Gold
  • Powertrain

Each option includes extra features, like alternative transportation coverage, towing, travel, and replacement fluids. Kia also offers four Distinction Vehicle Protection Plans for tires, wheels, interior or exterior coverage, alternative transportation, and towing/roadside assistance reimbursement. Whether any of these options are beneficial to you will depend on your budget and circumstances.

An extended warranty from a third-party provider may give you more options at a better price for a used or pre-owned vehicle. It can include coverage for your fuel and air conditioning systems, brakes, your front and rear suspension, and your transmission. But, of course, everything depends on the plan you select and the factors surrounding your car.


What Do You Do After Your Kia Warranty Expires?

Although Kia offers superior roadside assistance a

Although Kia offers superior roadside assistance and guarantees on parts and labor (compared to other brands), it only protects you for five to 10 years — in other words, the period in which your car will be running at its best and not yet deteriorating or breaking down by age and normal wear and tear. The big problems haven’t yet to rear their ugly heads. Choosing an extended warranty from Protect My Car with road hazard protection will come to your aid after the five- or ten-year mark, and with fewer limitations.

What Is Covered under a Manufacturer Warranty?

The Drive notes that warranties only work to cover factory defects. This focuses coverage on the car’s basic internal systems like the engine, steering system, transmission, and fuel system. While this might seem like they aren’t covering a decent amount of the car (interior, windows, sound system, etc.), the manufacturer is actually saving you from major potential expenses. For instance, replacing a transmission is a lot more expensive than replacing a windshield.

When you combine Kia’s powertrain warranty with its limited comprehensive coverage, you’ll benefit from major savings and worry-free ownership. Kia’s warranties provide almost twice as much coverage as other typical manufacturers.

Receipts: Make sure you keep all of them

Keep all receipts on any maintenance work done at facilities other than the dealership while your car is under warranty. Some people do not return to the dealer for service after buying a new vehicle. They have their vehicles serviced at quick lubes, their local repair facility, and/or anywhere they can find a deal. And that’s okay, as long as the service provider uses the specified fluids and OEM (original equipment) quality filters. So what’s the problem? A lot of folks don’t keep records and receipts. They have no documentation proving that the services were done according to mileage intervals as specified by the carmaker. When it comes time to file a warranty claim, the carmakers will ask for proof that the services were done. You haven’t kept receipts? No warranty coverage. This is one benefit of going to a dealer for regular maintenance while under warranty; the carmaker requires that the dealer keeps meticulous records. When and if a warranty claim becomes necessary, the dealership simply transfers all vehicle records electronically to the proper people for processing.

What’s Not Covered By Kia’s Warranty? 

Keep in mind, like most manufacturer warranties, Kia warranty coverage doesn’t include everything. Below are some of the expenses you can expect to pay for if you’re just relying on your Kia warranty:

  • Damage from collisions
  • Damage from “misuse” of your Kia, such as driving over curbs or hazardous objects
  • Alterations or modifications
  • Damage due to a lack of regular maintenance or incorrect fuel, oil, or lube
  • Environmental damage, such as road salt or hail
  • Wear and tear
  • Damage caused by the consumer, such as spills or burns on carpet or surfaces
  • Window scratches and breaks
  • Damage from installing incorrectly sized tires

Our Thoughts On Kia Warranties

A simple way to describe Kia’s new vehicle warranty is, in fact, the way they choose to describe it: limited. While powertrain coverage is exceptionally lengthy, certain parts only receive protection for a few years. There’s quite a bit of fine print when it comes to eligibility for certain parts and what coverage is transferable.

The company’s automobiles consistently rank among the most reliable in the industry, according to RepairPal and Autotrader. The Initial Quality Study by J.D. Power surveyed problems owners had with their vehicles in the first 90 days of ownership, and Kia came out on top.

However, studies like this don’t examine long-term reliability, and not all Kias are perfect.

According to RepairPal and YourMechanic data, most Kias have at least a 10-percent probability of needing an extensive repair within the vehicle’s lifetime, and even simple repairs can be costly. For example, alternator repairs for a Kia Soul can cost several hundred dollars, and a Kia Sportage with a bad air conditioning compressor can run you close to $1,000 to replace.

What Does the Kia Warranty Not Cover?

service your new Kia
  • Normal wear and tear.
  • Kia’s in-vehicle media controller and infotainment system.
  • Damage from auto accidents.
  • Window scratches and breaks.
  • Damage from incorrectly sized tires.
  • Misuse, such as driving over curbs or hazardous objects.
  • Damage caused by a lack of regular maintenance.
  • Environmental damage, such as road salt or hail.
  • Consumer-caused damage, such as spills or burns on carpet or surfaces.
  • Service adjustments such as tire alignment and balancing. These are covered for the first year or 12,000 miles by default.

Kia Roadside Assistance Benefits

In addition to lengthy coverage, Kia Motors also gives owners emergency roadside assistance and trip protection benefits. Roadside assistance service plans are available for five years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first, and are limited to $75 per occurrence. These perks include:

  • Lockout assistance
  • Jump-start assistance
  • Flat tire assistance, provided you have a spare tire available
  • Gas delivery (twice a year and a maximum of 2 gallons of gas)
  • Towing to the nearest Kia dealership if you experience a covered breakdown
  • Trip interruption expense benefits and reasonable reimbursement for meals, lodging, or rental cars depending on how far you are from home and the length of repairs
 While comprehensive in its own right, your new Ki
While comprehensive in its own right, your new Kia warranty still only covers factory defects. An extended warranty can help you fill in the coverage gaps your manufacturer’s warranty leaves behind.

What Do Kia Repairs Cost?

Before exploring a Kia extended warranty cost, let’s first review the average price buyers pay for various Kia models to help recognize potential repair costs.

2018 Kia Sorento 

Whether you pick the base model or the souped-up version, the 2018 Kia Sorento offers several options for all types of budgets. These models sell between $21,275-$33,944, while the average cost to repair a 2018 Kia Sorento falls between $362 and $442.

Consider the following list of common repairs for a Kia Sorento and what consumers will pay without the protection of a warranty:

Seat heater replacement  $891 and $928
Steering knuckle replacement  $727 and $759
Air conditioning refrigerant line replacement $658 and $676
Brake master cylinder replacement  $396 and $425
Engine mount replacement  $304 and $323

2018 Kia Soul

The bold style of Kia’s hatchback wagon offers seating for up to 5 passengers, with sale prices falling between $14,618 – $19,448 based on the available features. In addition, the average repair cost for the 2018 Kia Soul ranges between $301 and $368.

Let’s look at the following list of common repairs and what consumers can pay without a warranty for their Kia Soul:

AC condenser replacement  $618 and $650
Power steering hose replacement  $388 and $409
Radiator fan motor replacement  $318 and $347
Window regulator motor replacement  $302 and $332
Engine mount replacement  $295 and $317

Derived from RepairPal

Now, imagine having to replace one or more of these parts without car warranty coverage. Unless you have a significant amount of money set aside just for occasions like this, you might have to delay the repairs or charge them to a credit card where you would accrue interest. Neither option is appealing and both help warrant the need for additional vehicle protection.

Want to protect yourself from pricey auto repairs? Let us help you find the right extended car warranty company and coverage plan for your Kia! Get Pricing

What Vehicle Years Are Covered?

The warranty outlined here is new and applies to vehicles manufactured from 2008. Older Kias are covered by their original warranty, but by now, those terms have expired.

Kia Warranty Coverage Periods

According to the Kia warranty manual, the warranty coverage begins on the “date of first service,” meaning the first day the Kia vehicle is delivered to the first retail purchaser, leased, or placed into service as a company vehicle. For most owners, it’s the day the car is sold. 

This is standard among all automakers in the industry, but what sets Kia apart is its extended coverage periods. Both the powertrain and bumper-to-bumper warranties are almost twice as long as the industry standard, proving that Kia is committed to the durability of its cars.

Performance Modifications: Don’t modify or “chip” your car

A few years back, Ford issued a TSB (Technical Service Bulletin) regarding blown head gaskets on 6.0 Powerstroke turbo diesel engines in F-Series pickups (2005 and up). A lot of pickups were coming into shops across the country with blown head gaskets. The common thread? Power chips were installed to boost engine output. According to the Ford TSB, on trucks with blown head gaskets techs were to check for the installation of a power chip, which increases engine power by modifying the drivability and engine management parameters. Part of the programming modification on these vehicles included increasing turbo boost (which increased combustion chamber pressures), thus blowing head gaskets. In such cases where the vehicle was under warranty, claims were denied and engine warranties were voided; the carmaker simply confirmed that head gasket failure was indeed due to installation of the power chips. The carmaker was (again) well within its right to deny claims and void engine warranties.

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Compare America’s Best Warranty

Powertrain Limited Warranty New Vehicle Limited Warranty Anti-Perforation Warranty
Hyundai 10-Year / 100,000-Mile 5-Year / 60,000-Mile 7-Year / Unlimited
Toyota 5-Year / 60,000-Mile 3-Year / 36,000-Mile 5-Year / Unlimited
Honda 5-Year / 60,000-Mile 3-Year / 36,000-Mile 5-Year / Unlimited
Nissan 5-Year / 60,000-Mile 3-Year / 36,000-Mile 5-Year / Unlimited
Chevrolet 5-Year / 60,000-Mile 3-Year / 36,000-Mile 6-Year / 100,000-Mile
Lexus 6-Year / 70,000-Mile 4-Year / 50,000-Mile 6-Year / Unlimited

Based on total package of warranty programs. See dealer for LIMITED WARRANTY details.


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