Amex Extended Warranty Review: (iPhones, Applecare) [2019]

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American Express cards can be some of the best cards to make your big purchases on because they provide you with great extended warranty coverage. But what exactly are the limits of this coverage and how does it work? This article will walk you through all of the Amex extended warranty details so you’ll have an idea of what kind of coverage to expect when filing a claim. I’ll also cover some specific questions related to Applecare, iPhones, and refurbished items.

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What is the Amex extended warranty?

The Amex extended warranty can provide up to two extra years added to the original U.S. manufacturer’s warranty for coverage up to the original cost of the item or $10,000, whichever is less.

This is how it works.

Warranty less than two years

If the the original manufacturer’s warranty is less than two years, then Amex will match that warranty. So for example, a one year manufacturer warranty will result in you getting matched to an additional year of warranty coverage under Amex.

Warranty between two years and five years

If the original manufacturer’s warranty is between two years and five years, then Amex will add on an additional two years to the warranty coverage. So, for example, if your warranty is for four years, then Amex will add on two years so that you’ll be covered for a total of six years.

Warranty exceeds five years

If the original manufacturer’s warranty exceeds five years, the product purchased is not eligible under this Plan and no coverage applies.

This additional two years of warranty coverage is new as Amex used to only add one additional year to your coverage.


Coverage limits

Amex will cover the amount charged to your account but not to exceed the original cost of the item or $10,000, whichever is less. If you incur multiple losses for the same item, the aggregate payments too shall not exceed the lesser of the original cost of the item or $10,000, whichever is less.

You are also given a limit per calendar year not to exceed $50,000 for all losses.


Amex extended warranty for Amex cards 

I reviewed the terms and conditions for several of the most popular Amex cards to make sure that they were the same. All of the cards below contain the same or nearly identical warranty language:

We will match the length of the original warranty if the original manufacturer’s warranty is less than two (2) years, or we will provide two (2) additional years if the original manufacturer’s warranty is between two (2) years and five (5) years. If the original manufacturer’s warranty exceeds five (5) years, the product purchased is not eligible under this Plan and no coverage applies.

Interestingly, some of the terms omit the last sentence but that omission doesn’t really seem to have any effect since it really is just clarifying that you don’t get coverage outside of what is explicitly covered.

Here’s a list of many of the popular Amex cards that offer this extended warranty benefit.

Amex EveryDay

Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card

American Express Green Card

American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card

Blue Cash from American Express

Delta Reserve Credit Card

Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card

Hilton Honors American Express Card

Platinum Card from American Express

Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card


What is excluded?

Coverage will not be provided for a loss for which coverage is sought was directly or indirectly, wholly or partially, contributed to or caused by:

  • War or acts of war (whether declared or undeclared), participation in a felony, riot, civil disturbance, protest or insurrections, service in the armed forces or units auxiliary to it;
  • Any physical damage, including, but not limited to, damage as a direct result of natural disaster or a power surge, except to the extent the original manufacturer’s warranty covers such damage;
  • Mechanical failure covered under product recall; or
  • Fraud or abuse or illegal activity of any kind by the Card Member.

There are also many items that are excluded from coverage which include:

  • 1. Products covered by an unconditional satisfaction guarantee;
  • 2. Animals or living plants;
  • 3. Consumable or perishable items with extended or limited life spans (including, but not limited to; food, perfume, light bulbs, batteries);
  • 4. Motorized vehicles (passenger cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats, airplanes) and their parts, subject to high risk, combustion, wear and tear or mileage stipulations
  • 5. Motorized devices and their parts used for agriculture, landscaping, demolition or construction;
  • 6. Motorized devices and their parts which are permanent additions or fixtures to a residential or commercial building unless the item can be removed without causing damage to the structure;
  • 7. Business fixtures, (air conditioners, refrigerators, etc.)
  • 8. Land or buildings
  • 9. More than one article in a pair or set. Coverage will be limited to no more than the value of any particular part or parts, unless the articles are unusable individually and cannot be replaced individually, regardless of any special value they may have had as part of a set or collection;
  • 10. Additional service contract or extended warranty coverage for a computer, computer component or part that you buy which already comes with an original warranty, unless such coverage is provided and administered by the original manufacturer; and
  • 11. Items purchased for use as inventory, resale, professional, or commercial use

Number 10 is a big factor to consider. Your service contract for additional coverage needs to be provided and administered by the same original manufacturer to get coverage. I interpret this to mean that Applecare would be covered since it’s my understanding that Apple care is provided and administered by Apple.


How to file a claim

You need to provide Amex with notice of your claim within 30 days of the loss. If you fail to file your claim within 30 days, you’ll need to show Amex that notice was provided as soon as reasonably possible.

You can do this by calling toll-free stateside 1-800-225-3750 or, if from overseas, by calling collect 1-303-273-6498. You may also write to Amex at Extended Warranty, PO Box 981553, El Paso TX 79998-9920.

After you file your notice, Amex will provide you with the instructions and/or documents needed to complete your claim.


Proof of loss

You might need to show proof of loss at the request of Amex.

Written proof of loss, which includes the signed claim form and all other requested documentation, must be received within sixty (60) days after Amex has provided you with instructions and/or a claim form

The proof of loss must be sent to: Extended Warranty Claims Unit, PO Box 981553, El Paso TX 79998-9920.

If the required proof of loss and other documentation is not received within sixty 60 days coverage may be denied.

Proof of Loss may require documentation consisting of, but not necessarily limited to, the following:

  1. an Extended Warranty claim form;
  2. the original itemized store receipt with applicable sales tax included;
  3. a copy of the original manufacturer’s warranty and any additional retailer’s warranty and/or service contract, if applicable; and
  4. a repair estimate for the product by an authorized retailer that has been approved by the manufacturer

So do your best to hold on to all of your documents that you think might be needed to process your claim.


Amex extended warranty FAQ

Are refurbished items covered by the Amex extended warranty ?

If you purchase a refurbished item from the original manufacturer, you should be covered according to the terms (assuming there is an extended warranty offered by the original manufacturer). Be very careful about purchasing refurbished electronics from third-party retailers because those warranties offered by those retailers will not qualify for coverage.

Also keep in mind that refurbished warranties are usually much shorter compared to new products so always pat extra attention to the time limitations.

Are iPhones covered by the Amex extended warranty?

There’s a bit of uncertainty when it comes to what is covered for iPhones. If you just have the standard warranty, then you should be covered by the extended warranty protection offered by Amex no problem. The standard Apple warranty covers you for one year from the date of purchase, so Amex would add on another year to your coverage.

The question gets a little tricky when you’re talking about Applecare. Amex should provide you with two additional years of coverage with Applecare since plans are usually 2 to 3 years. The issue is that some have reported they were denied coverage since Applecare was considered secondary coverage.

This seems to contradict the terms and conditions which state:

If the item is also covered by a purchased service contract, the Extended Warranty Period begins at the end of the purchased service contract and extends the original manufacturer’s warranty for a period of time equal to the warranty, up to two (2) additional years.

I interpret this to mean that the Applecare warranty would be extended one year since the original manufacturer’s warranty is one year. So if you had Applecare coverage for two years, you could argue that you are due an additional year of coverage for a total of three years.

I haven’t had to deal with this issue myself so I’m not 100% sure how Amex would go about handling it but that’s what my understanding of the terms mean.

Is Pay with Points covered?

Yes, for accounts enrolled in the Membership Rewards Points and/or Pay with Points, an item is eligible for coverage if it was purchased through the redemption of Membership Rewards Points and/or Pay with Points.

What if the manufacturer goes out of business?

It’s possible that you could purchase an item with a warranty and that the entity offering the warranty goes out of business which could result in the end of that warranty. If that happens, Amex still has your back and they will provide coverage, not to exceed the original manufacturer’s warranty up to two years from the date the Card Member is notified of such event.

So if your warranty is for five years but they go out of business in year two, Amex will provide you with extended warranty coverage for another two years.


Compared to the Chase Sapphire Reserve

I always like to compare the benefits offered between top issuers like Amex and Chase. When it comes to extended warranties, Amex blows Chase out of the water.

Consider that the premium Chase Sapphire Reserve offers an extended warranty that extends the time period of the U.S. manufacturer’s warranty by one additional year, on eligible warranties of three years or less. The coverage limit of $10,000 is the same but you could potentially get much more coverage out of Amex. And that’s comparing basic Amex cards (with no annual fees) to the Chase Sapphire Reserve. Therefore, if you really want great warranty coverage, you’re better off going with Amex cards over Chase.


Final word

Amex is known for its great extended warranty coverage and after they recently added an additional year of coverage to their plans, it really does stand out as some of the best warranty coverage offered by any credit cards. If you’re considering making a big purchase, you might want to heavily consider going with Amex.

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