Breakdowns are not as common with leased cars, especially if you lease a brand new vehicle. But they happen sometimes, and when your leased car breaks down, you shouldn’t panic.
Mechanical problems are bound to happen even with the newest cars. Luckily for you, dealerships expect these things. This means your lease agreement probably already covers situations like a breakdown.
Steps to Take When Your Leased Cars Breaks Down
If you have chosen a reputable leasing company, rest assured that they will always provide support in times of emergency. This includes when you are stranded on the road with a faulty vehicle.
Here are some immediate actions to take in such a situation:
1. Avoid Panicking
It is easy to panic, especially in an unfamiliar environment. Try to focus instead on remaining calm and safe.
If your vehicle has broken down in a dangerous environment, stay buckled in while waiting for support. Your brand new vehicle developing a fault while you are by the side of the road can be frustrating. It is best to stay collected while waiting for help.
2. Contact the Manufacturer
Your brand new lease car should come with a breakdown cover that makes the manufacturer your first line of contact when there is an issue. In this case, contact the manufacturer.
Manufacturers offer roadside assistance as part of the warranty, so repair costs should be on them for a few years. Depending on the makers, some warranties cover the car for more than 3 years.
Check your contract for the manufacturer’s information or request it from your dealership.
Usually, manufacturers only provide basic coverage. This means they can only be of help when the issue with the car is minimal.
3. Contact the Dealership
Your car paperwork contains information about who to contact when there is a problem. When in doubt, you can always contact the dealership for further directions.
Inform the lease company about the breakdown and the current issues you are experiencing. They should be willing to come and pick up the car.
Some dealerships provide clients with rental cars for the time being. It all depends on your lease contract and the warranty.
4. Keep Repair Documents
So long as your warranty covers it, the dealership or manufacturer should take care of lease car repair costs.
When the manufacturer or dealership performs the needed repairs, remember to keep the receipts of the repairs. You may need these invoices at the end of the lease or to settle financial disagreements with the dealership in the future.
Who Should Handle Repair Costs When a Leased Car Breaks Down?
This depends on the type of fault the vehicle has. If it is a brand new car and the issue has to do with manufacturing, the car manufacturer will handle repair costs. You may have to return the car to them, so they fix the fault.
Since your maintenance contract covers maintenance and repairs, your dealership should be responsible for other faults.
The normal procedure is to take the vehicle to an approved repair center. So long as the vehicle is not damaged, you are most likely not paying for repairs out of pocket. Do not attempt to repair a leased car by yourself when it breaks down unless you have the dealer’s permission.
What Kinds of Faults Do a Breakdown Policy Cover?
Most breakdown policies typically cover repairs for the following:
- Damaged wheels: Your breakdown cover should cater to flat tires or if you find it difficult to change the wheels.
- Refueling: The policy may also cover refueling in an event where you have mistakenly added the wrong fuel.
- Motor failure: if you are experiencing difficulties starting the vehicle, this might be an electrical fault. The breakdown provider should come to inspect the car.
- Faulty batteries: Breakdown policies often cover flat or faulty car batteries that require jump-starting or replacement.
- Broken clutch cables: Some providers come to collect the vehicle for repair when the clutch cable breaks.
None of the faults mentioned above are directly the driver’s fault, so breakdown policies usually take care of them. Your breakdown policy may not cover the fault if it occurs at home or is an existing one. Consider adding an extra cover to your policy so you are fully protected if your leased car breaks down.