Your bicycle warranty may not be covering what you think
All cyclists and bike brands are different. Warranties are different from one another, too. Don’t get us wrong, we love warranties. Which is why we’re going to help you understand what they are, what they cover, and most importantly, what they don’t cover.
Before you start, time for a quick disclaimer. This is a general overview of warranties and its goal is to help you make the best decision for you as a rider. Not all warranties are created equal, some are better than others.
So, What is a Warranty Anyway?
What Does Each Different Type of Bike Warranty Cover?
This is the golden ticket of all warranties. The coveted jewel. The motherload. The … you get the idea, it’s a nice warranty.
Some brands offer lifetime warranties for their bikes while others may offer the chance to purchase one. A lifetime warranty typically ensures that if something on your bike breaks, bends, or cracks, it’ll be replaced with the same part or even something better – regardless of how many years it’s been since you made the purchase.
It’s important to note that this usually (although not always) means a part degrades because of a manufacturing defect. If something breaks because the manufacturer used a less-than-ideal material, you’re probably covered. If something breaks because you tried to replace your handlebars with rubber chickens, you’re probably not.
But sometimes, if you’re fortunate, lifetime warranties might include part repair or replacement for normal wear-and-tear under normal riding conditions. It largely depends on the brand. This is a fancy way of saying:
If your bike is run over by a truck, it’s not covered under warranty
Remember when we said that retailers run interference between you and whoever promises to repair or replace your bike parts? Fantastic! Let’s say your bike was actually run over by a truck (not fantastic) but you bring it in to try and get it covered under warranty anyway. There’s a decent chance your shop is going to know right away that your bike wasn’t damaged under normal riding conditions and you’re being sneaky. Just sayin’.
Limited Lifetime Warranty
You’ve probably heard of and may already have a limited lifetime warranty. These usually sound something like “5-year warranty” or “10-year warranty.”
Limited lifetime warranties for bikes and e-bikes are just that. They’re a limited version of a lifetime warranty wherein the brand promises to repair or replace bike parts within a certain period of time.
Some brands are more generous than others when it comes to repairs and replacements
It’s certainly not unheard of for cyclists to get a part replaced with one that’s even better and more suited to their riding style. We’re not saying it doesn’t happen, but we are saying you should always read the fine print. It all depends on the brand and the specific warranty you’re getting.