New car prep packages(undercoating, paint sealer protection)

I bought a 2008 Chrysler Town and Country Limited. I am elderly, don’t drive a lot any more and want to keep this car as long as I can. I purchased a 10yr-100k mile bumper to bumper warranty(no deduction). Dealer thinks undercoating and paint protection are wise additions. Do you agree? I live in North-west Indiana. Thank you.

Isn’t Chryco offering a LIFETIME warranty on their drive train??

I’m sorry to say it…but buying the 100k bumper to bumper warranty was NOT a good financial decision. First off…you say you don’t drive much. So you’ll probably never need the coverage. If you can get your money back I would. Those extended warranties are nothing but a very very very expensive insurance policy. They are GREAT for the unscrupulous salesman…but lousy for the buyer.

Of course the dealer thinks the undercoating and paint protection is a wise addition…They make a lot of money on them. They are nothing more then dealer profit items. They are NOT needed and should be avoided at all costs.

Normally, most of us would recommend against the 10 yr warranty as well as the undercoating since neither are cost-effeictive, i.e. the likelihood of having costly breakdowns on the items covered are smaller than the cost of the protection.

However, since you are going to keep this car a very long time and not drive it much, and likely live on a fixed income, it may be good assurance that you will not be out a lot of dollars in the next 10 years.

In your case, the 10 years will, be up long before the 100,000 miles are up, I would imagine. My mother-in-law, age 90, only drives 2000 miles a year. Her most serious problem on a 14 year old car with only 42,000 miles is corrosion. So the undercoating, if properly applied, might delay the rust long enough so you will never have to repair any of it.

As an aside, please change oil and filter at least twice a year, spring and fall, even if you drive very little. Also, please perform other maintenance as outlined in the manual.

The paint protection is probably a waste of money. Today’s clear coat paint lasts a long time. If you wash the vehicle regularly, and park it inside (unheated garage is best)or in a carport, the paint will stay shiny for at least 10 years.

If you live in an aprtment, a heated underground garage will geatly SPEED UP any corrosion. That’s why it is so important to wash off the road salt regularly.

If the 10 yr - 100K mile warrenty gives you peace of mind, it’s money well spent. That’s why this forum is here, to hear different points of view from all walks of life. It might never be used, however if you were to have a major repair job 8 years from now, it might pay for itself. I do all the work on my own cars myself, so for me it isn’t a good deal. The undercoating and paint protection, on the other hand, are not something going to leave you stranded or financially bogged down if something happens to your paint or the car rusts through. How many cars have you seen rusted that are 20 years old or newer? None, or at least very few, unless they have had repaired body damage. The process of electrically bonding the primer and paint is such a good process, that rust isn’t much of an issue anymore the way it was with older cars. You might price the undercoating at another (non-dealer) shop and see what they will charge you. Many dealers send vehicles off their lot to get the undercoating and mark up the price. If you take your car to get detailed every year with a wax job, it will always look as good as anything the dealer can sell you. Again, this is all just my opinion. I’m sure there are more to come.

Thank you. I do put about 10K on my car per year. I am 65 and have so much elecronic gear on this car I thought ten year protection on my electric power would work to my favor.

All new cars are undercoated at the factory, and no additional undercoating is required. Paint protection is another name for car wax, and it WILL NOT last as long as they claim. These “packages” are nothing but profit, and you don’t need them.

As you suggest, the extended warranty may help with the electronics, but the other stuff is worthless.

Modern cars have greatly improved in corrosion resistance, so undercoating is not recommended, and can even cause problems by plugging drains and trapping water. Your car has a 3 year perforation warranty on all sheetmetal, and a 5 year perforation warranty on exterior sheet metal. Toyota gave up trying to sell it as undercoating, now tries to sell it as additional soundproofing. Still not worth it. And the paint sealer is no different than a wax you can buy, except it costs far more. Also not worth it.

Normally, I recommend against an extended warranty because it is overpriced for what you get. If you can handle some risk, self insure by putting the price of the warranty into a savings account at the highest possible interest rate. If you need repairs that would have been covered by the warranty, pay for them out of this account.

Dealer paint treatment is nothing but an overpriced wax job. Either do it yourself or take it to an independent detailer who will be far cheaper than the dealer.

Modern cars are well protected against rust. At best, aftermarket rust proofing won’t help significantly. At worst, if it is improperly applied (e.g. plugging up drain holes that let water out), it will actually promote rust. The best and cheapest way to delay rusting is to wash the car as soon as possible after it is exposed to road salt.

Dealers like to sell extended warranties, rust proofing, clear bras, paint protection, etc. because they grossly overcharge for them. At least half of the price goes straight into the dealer’s pocket.

Save The Money For The Car Wash

First, I do not necessarily think the bumper-to-bumper warranty was a poor decision. Why? Because I have no idea what it cost.

I live in the rust belt where tons of salt are scattered all over the roads for 6 months of the year. One of our cars is a Dodge Caravan.

Engineers at Chrysler have done a super job making this vehicle rust resistant. Take a look around when you travel about. You will not see very many rusty Chrysler minivans. You are vulnerable to sales people who are trying to sell you additional rust-proofing and some extra peace of mind, as we all are when making a big dollar purchase.

Again, I have to kindly differ with the advice that if the rust-proofing is done correctly, then it is worth doing. It is never done correctly, in my opinion. It can’t be, without taking the vehicle apart. I worked in a body shop where we routinely cut body panels away and I could see where rust-proofing actually went. They all missed some areas. Sometimes additional rust-proofing will even void the factory rust warranty that comes with your van. Check the wording in the rust warranty. Sometimes “engineered in” drains get clogged up by added rust-proofing stuff and the car never dries inside certain places.

Therefore, I would skip the rust-proofing.

Skip the paint sealant, too. This vehicle has a tough clear-coat finish. Wax it or have it waxed once or twice a year.

Keep it clean and enjoy it! It should easily give you good service for a long time. I generally keep our cars for 10 to 15 years. I just sold our Dodge Spirit we purchased in January, 1992.

They wouldn’t sell it to you if it was going to be in your favor.

No, I do not agree that it’s a good idea.

Modern cars are designed to ward off rust via the alloys used, conformal coatings bonded to the parts, bonding techniques that do not promote rust, elimination of cavities, proper cavity drainage and ventilation where cavities cannot be avoided, and even many parts and assemblys that aren’t even metal anymore. Aftermarket rustproofing can actually breech these protections, clog drainage vents, and promote rust over what the car came with.

Don’t do this. It’s simply a dealer revenue generator.

Not Necessarily!

They wouldn’t sell it to you if the odds were going to be in your favor!

Do this:
When the salesman pushes for those add-ons, saying it’d be a wise investment, tell the person that if the vehicle is so shoddy that it needs this stuff, you do NOT want the vehicle. Then get up to leave and do not look back, let them follow you to your car and when you get in, roll the window down and say that you want $3k taken off the sticker price for your hassle.

Undercoating and paint protection is just another name for ADP. Neither will benefit you. Today’s cars don’t need either. The work is done at the factory and they do a far better job than the dealer could do.

Now take a look at that 10 year warranty. The car comes with a warranty. How many years is that warranty that comes with the car from the manufacturer (not the dealer) at no additional cost. Maybe you just bought a ten year warranty when you already had 7 years included in the cost of the car from Chrysler.

Those dealer warranties are not really warranties, they are insurance policies and the dealer will get about 50% of the cost off the top. Then the insurance company, will make a profit off what is left, then maybe 30% will be left to pay for any covered repairs. They know what it will really cost them and they are not about to loose money on the deal. See if you can get out of that insurance.

Note: there is some intangible benefit of having the insurance. I can’t put a price on it, because for me it is zero, but I would guess it has some value to you and if that good feeling that you have coverage is worth what you paid for it, then it may well be a good deal for you. Just don’t expect it to pay back any more than you would have if you had just put the money in the bank gaining interest.

See What A Leading Consumer Magazine Says

Click the link below. Look particularly at item #8 Buying Unnecessary Extras

When we bought our 2004 honda civic the dealer tried selling us a 60k extended warranty. I asked the guy if the car we were buying was junk since he thought we needed an extended warranty. To top it off its really only a 24k warranty since the car came with a 36k warranty. Needless to say we didn’t buy it and saved 600 bucks. The car now has 110k on it and It has needed 2 headlamp bulbs replaces aside from maintainance (front brakes at 92k, fluids, ect) the car has needed no repairs. I Undercoated spots under the car where it was prone to rock chips, I took the bumpers off and sprayed marine lithuim grease into the frame members for a total of 30 bucks. I then put on the paint protections by waxing the car with a meguires wax.

If I were you I would take the money from the paint protection and undercoating and have the car detailed and waxed twice a year, be sure to wax it before winter at least.

Stuff like paint protection probably is a come-on. However, an extended mechanical warrantee can pay for itself… deptending upon the car. I bought an extended warrantee for a VW GTI and made money off of it. Because there have always been unresolved design flaws with the VW in areas like the dual fuel pumps and some electrical problems when failures started to repeatedly occur in these areas around year 5 I got more than my money back quickly. Were you buying a Toyota, an extended warranty is probably not a deal. If you are buying something dodgy or fragile, the warranty may be a deal. Depends upon how badly made the car is.

They wouldn’t sell it to you if the odds were going to be in your favor!

Yea, but they know the odds. Your making a bet on the guys who know what cards you have and what they have.