Another Reason I Love Credit Cards So Much: Extended Warranties

by Kevin on April 11, 2013

I was cautiously introduced to proper credit card use when I was a teenager. It was like my parents finally agreed to let me very carefully grab the beaker of dangerous chemicals off the counter with some tongs, complete with their supervision so I wouldn’t drop it and burn down the house.

Over the years I have come to absolutely love credit cards. This seems awkward for readers of a blog that wants to get you out of debt, but if you dig a little deeper it aligns well.

Credit cards can be abused to your detriment. That is one camp.

I fall into the camp that believes that successfully managing your credit cards can lead to better financial rewards than you would have otherwise. And this belief is based on my experience.

So here’s another feather in the cap of credit card users: the automatic warranty extension.

Using Credit Card Extended Warranty Coverage

Don’t get me wrong, I love cash back, airline miles, and hotel points. Those are all great because I’m getting a few percent back for spending money I would spend anyway.

But even if you don’t use a cash back card very often, your credit card can be invaluable if it has extended warranty protection.

All it takes is one claim.

I recently had to use my extended warranty coverage. I believe this is the first time I used the coverage with my favorite card company, American Express, since I became a member 7 years ago.

Getting My Cell Phone Replaced with Credit Card Extended Warranty

I’ve become a fan of smartphones. It is an expensive habit, but allows me to run an online business from just about anywhere.

In December 2011 I upgraded to a Galaxy Nexus on my Verizon account. Great phone. Slick interface, fast, did everything I could have ever wanted except for taking photos in dim light situations. Everything else was great. It ran on the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Android.

After many, many delays Verizon updated the Nexus to the latest version of Android called Jelly Bean.

That’s when I started to get concerned.

My phone wasn’t as smooth before. I found myself going through battery like nobody’s business. (And I had a spare battery to boot.)

It started to reset on its own. Sometimes I was using the phone, sometimes it was sitting on the desk at work completely untouched. I would see the Google logo as the phone restarted.

Very weird.

Verizon was of no help, either. They told me to do a hard reset where you remove all of your data, the phone is completely wiped, and the operating system is reinstalled. (This also means you get to spend a ton of time downloading your apps again and getting your data back on the device.)

I did that, and it didn’t help. Per the employee’s instructions I did a warranty claim on day 364 of my ownership, right before the original one year manufacturer’s warranty ran out.

The new device arrived and lo and behold it seemed to be better

But that was not to last. It started heavily rebooting 3-5 times per day a few weeks ago. I was having to pull the battery out that many times as well. Sometimes when the device rebooted it would get stuck and never load, so I’d have to take the back panel off, pull the battery and then restart it.


American Express Extended Warranty Saves the Day

Unfortunately Verizon was of no help once again. I was kindly informed that refurb devices only have a 90 day warranty. How convenient that just after 90 days my phone starts to go crazy again.

Instead of remaining upset (and let me tell you, I was furious!) I finally remembered that I might be able to use my AMEX card’s extended warranty coverage.

As it turns out I could use my coverage. And it worked. I’ll walk through the specific steps I had to take to make sure my claim was paid in my next post.


Alex April 17, 2013 at 3:42 pm

This article was awesome!! Thank you. Being fairly new to the credit card arena I am constantly trying to gather as much information as possible to try and keep myself headed in the right general direction. Spending some time on this post has actually given me a lot of great points to think about. In my recent research I have also been able to find some pretty useful information related to this topic when I Googled the credit locker university. This was helpful as well. Thanks again!

Alex April 19, 2013 at 11:55 am

Here is something I found in my travels that may be useful.

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