Cost comparison: Should I pay out of pocket for repairs or get a Vehicle Protection Plan?

Now that you know what a car Protection Plan is and how to find out if your vehicle is still under Protection Plan, it’s time to figure out whether you would prefer to pay for a repair out of your own pocket or get a car Protection Plan to cover repair costs.

As you will recall, a car Protection Plan — whether limited or extended — covers parts and labor on repairs needed due to defects and damage occurring during normal use of your vehicle. For example, a brake pad change scheduled for 30,000 miles wouldn’t be covered, as it would be expected for the pads to last that long. But if your pads needed to be replaced after just 5,000 miles of driving, the Vehicle Protection Plan would cover this fix due to defects or damage found with the pads.

According to Brake Experts, parts and labor for replacing brake pads ranges from about $130 to $300 per axle. You may have already prepared yourself to pay such costs out-of-pocket as far as normal wear and tear goes.

If the pads are already trash after just a few thousand or even hundred miles of driving, though, would you want to reach into your wallet to cover the cost, or would you rather leave such things to your Vehicle Protection Plan?

Perhaps you could stomach dropping $260 on your vehicle’s pads (again) after having just replaced them a short time ago. But if your pads come out to $600, you might wish to have a Vehicle Protection Plan to cover it. After all, that $600 out-of-pocket expense might be better used for a new set of wheels to dress up your ride or for a fun weekend outing with the family.

Brake pads are just one example of where leaving it to your Vehicle Protection Plan instead of your bank account may be more beneficial in the long run, even if pad replacement is one of the cheaper repairs your vehicle will undergo. Other parts and systems, like air conditioning and transmissions, should definitely be left to your Vehicle Protection Plan to cover should disaster arise; the average replacement cost of a transmission alone is $2,600, according to

Of course, there are more enjoyable ways to spend that much money. An extended Vehicle Protection Plan can guarantee you and your bank account won’t be in pain when the unexpected happens.

September 30, 2022