Long-time readers may recall my cheap DIY kitchen renovation a few years back. As part of the renovation, we upgraded our appliances – or, so we thought. I had spent a good amount of time researching consumer reviews of appliances before making my picks, but just over 3 years after that renovation, we were frustrated to find ourselves with a useless, dead dishwasher.
My first instinct was to check the manufacturer’s warranty to find out if a repair and replacement would be covered. Unfortunately, the full warranty coverage was only a year, as is the case with most major appliance manufacturer warranties (some manufacturer’s extend that to cover a limited selection of parts for longer periods, but most have a full warranty of just one year). After that, the manufacturer claims zero responsibility if the appliance stops working. You’re on your own for any parts uncovered parts, service, or unit replacement.
My next step was to try to troubleshoot the issue and even replace a key part that was often cited for breaking down. That didn’t work either, and I eventually came to the sad conclusion that the motor on the unit had died. Instead of syncing hundreds into a new motor and a service visit on a dishwasher that was <$300 to begin with, I decided to cut my losses and shop for a new dishwasher from a different manufacturer.
As a Costco member, I was surprised to see that Costco was offering an extensive selection of dishwashers (they didn’t a few years back, and I can’t recall ever seeing appliances in store) and a few of the models I had narrowed my search down to were being sold at Costco.com. Costco was not only offering similar prices as other retailers, but I was excited to find that delivery, installation, and haul-away of the old unit was free in my state. I could handle all 3 of those on my own at no charge, but if you’re not so inclined, this can add up to hundreds in added charges at other retailers (and it will save me some time).
I was even more excited to find details on Costco’s extended warranty on appliance product pages:
Not only does Costco add an extra year to the 1-year manufacturer’s warranty, but if you use your Costco Visa card to make the purchase, Citi adds on an additional 2 years of extended warranty (bringing the total to 4 full years)! And this applies to not only dishwashers, but other major appliances, TVs, non-tablet computers, and more. Costco concierge states:
Costco extends the manufacturer’s warranty on Televisions, Tuner-Free Displays, Projectors, Computers* Major Appliances† and Water Heaters to 2 years from the date of purchase.
And when using the Anywhere Visa Card by Citi:
In addition to your Costco Concierge Warranty, if you make your purchase with your Costco Anywhere Visa Card, Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card or Costco credit card reward certificate, Citi will extend your manufacturer’s warranty for an additional 2 years. Coverage begins when the manufacturer’s warranty, or an extended warranty you purchased, expires. In no event will total coverage exceed seven years from the purchase date. You’re covered for up to $10,000 per item*.
For the record, “major appliances” consists of “Refrigerators (above 10 cu. ft), freezers, ranges, cooktops, over-the-range microwaves, dishwashers, washers and dryers.”.
Reading the limited fine print at Costco and Citi, the extended warranties appear to have few exceptions, unlike many store-bought extended warranties that require you to pay for a service-call and/or don’t cover the full unit. You can purchase relatively inexpensive extended warranties at Costco, but you should never need to with your purchases covering 4 years. If you have a lemon, you’ll find out within 4 years.
Shopping for new appliances is no fun and can be stressful, but these value-adds can be a game changer for Costco members. And, no, this is not a sponsored post for Costco or Citi – I’m an actual Costco member who was really excited to see these value-adds. This benefit is one of many that makes Costco membership worth the cost for me (in addition to high quality store brand food, cheap gas, Costco’s Kirkland dog and cat food, and Costco’s alcohol, wine, beer, and spirits.
Note: most Costco appliance purchases are available to members only, so if you intend to shop without a membership, you’re probably out of luck.