Content on Jalopnik Advisor is commercial in nature and independent of Jalopnik Editorial and Advertising. Jalopnik Advisor content is free to consumers and always will be, however we and our partners may be compensated if you purchase a product or service through the links on this website.

Vehicle service maintenance handsome mens checking under car condition on lifter in garage. Automotive mechanic man use tool to tighten and replace damaged or broken part. Car repair service concept.

CarShield Reviews

Our editorial team rates CarShield 4.3 out of 5.0 stars and recognizes it for offering good Month-to-Month Contracts for extended warranties in 2024

01/04/2024 01:07 PM

The Gist:

  • Based on quotes we received during our mystery shopping endeavors, CarShield plans tend to cost between $149 and $169 per month.
  • CarShield provides six different plan options for drivers to choose from.
  • CarShield offers unique plans for specialty models such as motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs).

Our warranty experts have spent hundreds of hours researching the best extended car warranty companies and ended up looking at CarShield reviews. While it’s not quite our top choice, we came away impressed with CarShield’s reasonable warranty quotes and varied coverage plans.

In this CarShield review, we’ll take a close look at the company’s marks from customers along with cost factors, its industry reputation, and coverage options. At the end, we’ll offer a few suggestions for other extended warranty providers worth consideration alongside CarShield.

Our CarShield Review

CarShield received a rating of 4.3 out of 5.0 from our editorial team, along with the award for Month-to-Month Contracts in 2024. The company’s overall score was aggregated from five key areas: reputation, coverage, cost, transparency, and customer experience. See the table below for a breakdown of scores by category:

Review CategoryCarShield Score
Customer Experience4.0
Overall Rating4.3

How Good Is CarShield?

CarShield could be a great extended auto warranty company if you’re looking for affordable coverage options. It’s one of the most reputable extended car warranty companies in the industry and was the most popular provider in our 2022 warranty survey.

Below are some other characteristics of CarShield that make it stand out:

  • Low rates: CarShield consistently offers some of the lowest extended warranty costs in the industry.
  • Month-to-month contracts: In addition to offering low rates, CarShield is one of the few providers that offers month-to-month and rolling contracts.
  • Specialty coverage: CarShield offers coverage for motorcycles, ATVs, and other specialty vehicles. The company also has a dedicated coverage plan for vehicles with advanced electronics.

CarShield Pros And Cons

Below is a list of pros and cons we found while preparing our CarShield review:

Pros Roadside assistance and trip interruption services are included Repair shop paid directly Wide range of coverage options Low or $0 deductibles Coverage up to 300,000 miles
Cons Negative CarShield reviews about advertising practices Low BBB rating and lack of accreditation Rental car reimbursement not in all contracts

About CarShield

CarShield is a vehicle service contract broker, meaning it sells plans administered by companies such as American Auto Shield. This means that CarShield acts as a middleman while another company actually administers its plans. 

CarShield, which has been featured on outlets like TBS, ESPN, HGTV, and CNN, is the industry’s most popular extended car warranty provider. In fact, 56 percent of the 240 respondents in our 2022 extended warranty consumer survey said they had used CarShield.

Chart showing popular extended warranty providers

CarShield Company Information

  • Year founded: 2005
  • Headquarters location: St. Peters, Missouri
  • Company type: Vehicle service contract broker

CarShield Reviews And Ratings

CarShield is a legitimate auto warranty broker offering coverage for both new vehicles and used cars. It’s serviced over 1 million claims since opening its doors in 2005. However, despite CarShield’s long standing as a company, its reviews and ratings are mixed.

CarShield BBB Reviews

Our research shows that CarShield holds a D rating and lacks accreditation from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). In addition, over 2,300 customers on the website have given the provider a 1.54 out of 5.0 rating. Note that CarShield’s rating has slightly improved in recent months, as it previously received an A rating.

The third-party warranty broker has closed over 3,300 complaints in the last three years and over 1,000 in the last year. While the number of complaints and low ratings may seem like a red flag, this is only a small fraction of CarShield’s overall customer base.

CarShield Trustpilot Reviews

On the other hand, CarShield reviews on Trustpilot are positive overall. The company holds a “Great” rating and 4.2 out of 5.0 stars. Over 48,200 CarShield customers have left reviews on Trustpilot, with 76 percent of them either four- or five-star ratings.

CarShield Mobile App

CarShield also offers a mobile app that allows customers to view the details of their contract. The CarShield app holds a 3.6-star rating out of 5.0 from over 850 reviews on Google Play. CarShield reviews are slightly worse on the Apple App Store with 3.3 stars out of 5.0 from over 305 customers.

CarShield Reviews And Complaints

Positive CarShield reviews show that the extended warranty provider is popular among customers because of its helpful service. Overall, verified CarShield complaints represent only a small fraction of the company’s customer base.

The sections below contain reviews and complaints from CarShield customers:

CarShield Warranty Reviews

In addition to the CarShield reviews below, many others mention pleasant and helpful representatives when filing claims. Car owners also talk about helpful staff when they get quotes and purchase plans.

“CarShield lived up to their end of the deal when I had trouble with my Chrysler 300. They had it towed to a shop. They provided a rental. CarShield paid the repair bill. Everything I could ask.”

– Paul E. via the BBB

“I took my vehicle to the shop and once it was diagnosed, CarShield was called for their approval. They proceeded to contact me about the payment and once the repair was completed, they paid the amount they said they would pay. Everything went very smoothly.”

– Martha via Trustpilot

CarShield Warranty Complaints

The CarShield customer below brings up a common problem with all extended warranty companies: the driver expected a repair to be covered when it wasn’t. CarShield’s sample contracts state that the company doesn’t cover fastening bolts, which the owner didn’t realize.  

“I was informed that the cam gear bolts caused damage to the cam cradle and metal throughout the engine. To be informed that you will not cover ‘fastening hardware’ is ridiculous. I find this unacceptable because it’s a part of the unit. I’m highly disappointed with this warranty.

– Diane B. via the BBB

In other negative CarShield reviews, customers mention pushy salespeople who try to have callers buy plans over the phone on first contact. CarShield representatives might not go through every exclusion over the phone, either.

Still, CarShield has a 30-day money-back guarantee period. It’s important to take the time to read the whole contract and understand what’s covered. This will prevent you from facing surprises if you end up in the repair shop after a mechanical breakdown.

CarShield Reviews On Reddit

Reddit may not be a traditional reviews site like the BBB or Trustpilot. However, many people go to the discussion board to find customer reviews and ask questions about companies like CarShield. We looked at CarShield reviews on Reddit to see what consumers had to say.

“No. I’ve asked shops around, and they all say CarShield doesn’t want to pay for [anything]. I would definitely go with a service contract or another company if you’re not going to get another vehicle.”

– u/FaidedFaith451

“CarShield and American Auto Shield misrepresented the coverage sold to me. Today, [they] told me they don’t cover convertibles which I clearly stated I had from initial coverage. The roof is operated by the power window motor, which is covered under my Gold policy. Rear windows won’t go up.

They cannot provide me with a repair facility that accepts CarShield. And they won’t reimburse for any out-of-pocket repair expenses I may make to repair. I’ve paid $1,800 over 18 months with zero claims, just to be told my car is not covered.”

– u/Banksville

What Does CarShield Cover?

All CarShield vehicle service contracts cover your vehicle after mechanical failures due to defects in material or workmanship. Drivers can choose from a variety of coverage levels that last up to a total of 300,000 miles. Plans are accepted at any repair shop certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE®).

CarShield Coverage Plans

There are six options for CarShield extended warranty coverage. Plans range from a basic powertrain warranty that covers your engine, transmission, and other essential parts to bumper-to-bumper coverage comparable to a new car’s factory warranty. Note that CarShield’s vehicle service contracts list out exactly which parts are covered under warranty. The only plan that’s an exception is the Diamond plan, which lists excluded rather than included parts.

CarShield Warranty Plans

See the table below for an overview of the warranty plans CarShield offers:

Extended Warranty Plan
Covered Repairs
DiamondThis plan is similar to a manufacturer’s warranty on a new car. It covers almost any mechanical or electrical component, minus a few exclusions.
PlatinumCarShield’s Platinum plan is its highest level of stated-component coverage and ranks as the best option for cars with high mileage. This comprehensive plan covers 15 major systems and includes the air conditioning, steering, fuel pump, suspension, brakes, and engine.
GoldThis is an enhanced powertrain plan that covers parts on 10 major systems of the vehicle.
SilverThis plan covers the basic powertrain (engine, transmission, and drive axle) plus the water pump, turbocharger, and 4×4 transfer case.
AluminumThis plan is CarShield’s high-tech option designed for luxury and specialty vehicles. It covers some basic systems plus high-tech components like factory GPS, instrument clusters, gauges, and sensors.
Motorcycle & ATVMotorcycle and ATV owners can choose either Gold or Silver levels for their specialized vehicles.
CarShield Sample Contracts

When we break it down, CarShield actually only offers four main plans for standard cars: Diamond, Platinum, Gold, and Silver. The last two choices aren’t applicable to all drivers. However, CarShield offers multiple contracts within each of these plan levels, including a month-to-month option for each plan.

It’s important to understand exactly what’s covered under the contract. If you feel comfortable with the terms of your warranty, there won’t be any surprises later on. Be sure to either ask for a breakdown of your contract from a customer representative or read the fine print yourself.

CarShield offers six different extended warranty contracts. CarShield reviews show many drivers are happy with coverage.
CarShield offers sample contracts like this one on their website.

CarShield Perks and Benefits

All CarShield plans other than ATV contracts come with roadside assistance, rental car reimbursement, and trip interruption reimbursement. ATV contracts only come with roadside assistance. Here are the details of CarShield perks:

Warranty Plan BenefitWhat It Does
Roadside assistanceCarShield provides up to $125 per occurrence and $500 total for the life of the contract for towing, spare tire installation, lockout service, fuel delivery, battery jump-starts, and winching.
Rental car reimbursementCarShield will reimburse you up to $100 per day for rental car expenses in the case of a covered repair.
Trip interruption reimbursementCarShield will reimburse you up to $125 per day ($500 per occurrence) for food and lodging if you experience a breakdown more than 100 miles from home.

What Does CarShield Not Cover?

In our research, we found that most CarShield reviews mention no issues with the provider paying for repairs. However, keep in mind that CarShield can deny claims for various common reasons. All CarShield contracts beyond Diamond coverage share some common exclusions:

  • Damage from lack of maintenance
  • Damage caused by environmental events, theft, vandalism, or car accidents
  • Modifications
  • Misuses like racing or off-road driving
  • Tampering with the odometer
  • Wear items and standard maintenance
  • Preexisting conditions
  • Damage caused by a noncovered failing part
  • External nuts, bolts, or fasteners

CarShield Waiting Period

All CarShield plans come with a waiting period of either 30 days and 1,000 miles or 90 days and 200 miles before becoming active. This protects the company from covering any preexisting mechanical issues.

CarShield Warranty Claims

The CarShield claims process is easy since the company pays the repair shop directly. However, if the repair is extensive, you may have to wait for an inspection from CarShield to verify coverage. You also might have to authorize a diagnosis, but it’s important to note that CarShield won’t cover it if the repair isn’t found in your contract.

Does CarShield Pay Its Claims?

Some CarShield reviews mention the company not paying for car repairs. It’s important to read the contract thoroughly and understand exactly what’s covered. For example, damage from overheating isn’t covered. So, if an engine component that’s normally covered was damaged from overheating, CarShield won’t pay for the repair.

Also, remember that rental car reimbursement is, in fact, a reimbursement. You’ll have to pay for a rental upfront and submit receipts later on unless you get the repair at a dealership that also provides rental cars.

CarShield Claims Number

You can contact CarShield’s claims department at 1-800-859-9923 or make a phone call to its customer service team at 1-800-587-4162. The company’s customer service is available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Eastern and on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

How Much Does CarShield Cost?

CarShield is an affordable provider, as many CarShield reviews attest. Based on our research, CarShield’s highest level of coverage costs between $149-$169 on average. Your total price will vary, as some contracts are offered for unlimited years and miles.

The company offers affordable payments compared to other providers we reviewed, which is why we named CarShield as the Best Monthly Payments provider in our 2024 review.

CarShield Prices

To get an idea of CarShield’s pricing, our review team contacted it while mystery shopping for extended car warranty quotes. The instant quotes below apply to coverage plans with a $100 deductible.

Make and Model
Term LengthMonthly
2022 Honda CivicDiamond planUnlimited; month-to-month$149.00$200.00
2016 Subaru OutbackGold planUnlimited; month-to-month$149.00$200.00

Typical Extended Warranty Costs

We ran a survey of 1,000 respondents to learn how much consumers are spending on extended warranty coverage. Here’s a closer look at the cost breakdown of what people actually paid:

Bar chart showing what people reported paying for an extended car warranty

Keep in mind that your car’s make, model, year, and mileage all affect the price you’ll pay for an extended warranty. Quotes can also vary between states because of regulations in different markets.

Does CarShield Have A Deductible?

Based on our research, CarShield offers deductibles that are very low or nonexistent. The free quotes we received from the company each came with a $100 deductible, which is standard in the extended car warranty industry.

CarShield Quotes

You can get a CarShield quote by calling the company directly or by submitting information through an online form. If you request an instant quote online, a CarShield customer service representative will call you to discuss all your options.

CarShield Refund Policy

You can cancel a CarShield contract within 30 days for a full refund, as long as you haven’t used it for any auto repairs. After that period, you can cancel coverage for a prorated refund based on time and mileage. Most CarShield reviews say that it’s easy to get money back from the warranty provider if you cancel early.

Is CarShield Transferable?

CarShield extended warranty plans can be transferred to secondary buyers for a $50 fee. You can’t transfer the contract from one of your own vehicles to another, but you can get in touch with customer service to change coverage when you replace your car with a new one.

Having a transferable warranty can be a positive factor if you’re looking to sell your vehicle, as it can add some value as you go through the selling process.

How To Cancel CarShield

To cancel your CarShield contract, speak with CarShield’s customer service team at 1-800-587-4162. One of CarShield’s contract administrators, American Auto Shield, requires all motorists to submit a written cancellation request. You can also speak with representatives during any part of the cancellation process.

CarShield Reviews: The Bottom Line

In our CarShield review, we found that the company provides reasonable monthly payments and extremely flexible warranty contracts. While those are compelling reasons to consider CarShield, we suggest thinking about what matters to you before settling on a plan.

Recommendations For Extended Auto Warranties

Even if you find a very attractive price from CarShield, we recommend checking out more of the best car warranty companies to find a standout rate and coverage plan.

In our research, we found Endurance and CARCHEX to be great options. Both companies offer plenty of coverage choices and allow drivers to visit any ASE-certified repair facility. Learn more about each extended car warranty provider in the sections below.

Endurance: Best Plan Offerings

Endurance has been around for more than 15 years. The company is a direct provider, meaning it administers all of its contracts without the help of a third party. Endurance offers six vehicle protection plans including a bumper-to-bumper option. In addition, all plans come with Endurance Elite Benefits for the first year which include key fob replacement, a collision discount, and total loss protection.

Find out more: Endurance warranty review

CARCHEX: High-Mileage Limits

We think CARCHEX is a great option for high-mileage vehicles because it can cover cars up to 250,000 miles. CARCHEX has been around for more than 23 years and is endorsed by industry leaders like, Kelley Blue Book, and CARFAX. If you’re looking for an extended warranty for a car over 100k miles, CARCHEX is a great choice.

Find out more: CARCHEX review

CarShield Warranty Reviews: FAQ

Below are some frequently asked questions about CarShield extended auto warranties:

How legit is CarShield?

CarShield is not a scam or a rip-off. The company has over 39,000 reviews on Trustpilot with a 4.0-star rating overall. The key to not being disappointed with an extended warranty is to read the fine print and understand what is and isn’t covered.

How much does CarShield cost?

CarShield’s highest level of coverage costs between $149 and $169 per month, with an average total cost that varies by contract length. CarShield’s prices are cheaper than those from many of its competitors.

What is not covered by CarShield?

CarShield covers a range of mechanical breakdowns depending on which plan you choose. The highest level of coverage is similar to a factory warranty, so it takes care of almost any breakdown due to mechanical failure of a factory-installed part. However, plans exclude cosmetic items, wear parts like brake pads, and damages from environmental events, misuse, or lack of maintenance.

Who accepts CarShield?

All repair shops included in CarShield’s Shield Repair Network accept its coverage plans. To find a CarShield repair shop near you, use the locator tool on If you’re a member, you can also find them through the shop locator on the CarShield app.

Is CarShield worth it?

Yes, a CarShield warranty can be worth buying if you’re looking for peace of mind and want extra protection for your vehicle. The company has been in business for over 18 years and offers an array of unique offerings rarely seen in the industry.

What are the cons of CarShield?

One of the biggest cons of CarShield is its high number of negative reviews on the BBB. The company has a D rating due to advertising issues and failure to resolve complaints.

Does CarShield really pay for repairs?

According to positive reviews from thousands of customers, CarShield does pay for repairs. However, each contract comes with specific exclusions that apply to different parts and situations. Read the entire contract before signing up to avoid being disappointed if a repair is not covered.

Does CarShield cover the alternator?

Yes, CarShield covers the alternator under its Diamond, Platinum, Gold, and Aluminum plans. The alternator is included under electrical system coverage along with the power window motor, ignition switch, wiper motors, power door locks, and more.

Is CarShield really reliable?

Yes, CarShield is a trustworthy and reliable company. It’s been in business since 2005 and holds one of the strongest reputations in the extended car warranty industry. In addition, the St. Peters, Missouri-based company was named Best Monthly Payments in our CarShield review.

What is the downside of CarShield?

The main downsides of CarShield are that it has a relatively high number of poor reviews online and that its rental car reimbursement policy doesn’t come with all plans.

Why does CarShield have so many complaints?

According to the BBB, CarShield has a high number of complaints and a D rating because of misleading sales and advertising practices. The consumer website states that there have been TV advertisements saying that customers won’t be responsible for any expensive repairs and can take their vehicle to any repair facility.

Why isn’t CarShield sold in California?

CarShield is not in California because the state has certain caveats. All warranty sellers and administrators must be licensed, and only dealerships can sell vehicle service contracts, while insurance companies sell mechanical breakdown insurance.

How We Rate Warranty Providers

Our review process aims to deliver consistent and unbiased assessments of extended auto warranty providers. While there are multiple qualities that make a warranty company successful, our review team focuses on those we believe are the most important for consumers:

  • Reputation: It’s important that an extended car warranty company is able to meet its claims obligations. Companies with a strong rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and a long history of reliable service score well in this category. We also evaluate the availability and transparency of each company’s contracts, as well as whether each provider offers a money-back guarantee.
  • Coverage: Our team of experts looks at the number of extended warranty plans available, as well as term limits, exclusions, and added benefits like roadside assistance. Ratings also take into account the availability of maintenance coverage.
  • Cost: Cost can be difficult to compare between providers because so many factors impact vehicle service contract pricing. To determine our cost score, we perform a secret shopper analysis for a variety of vehicles and plans and consider available deductibles.
  • Customer Experience: We listen to real customer sales calls and comb through reviews on sites like the BBB to learn about customer experiences. Warranty companies with a low volume of complaints score well in this area. We also consider the availability of mobile apps and chat features.

View Pricing from our #1 Provider – Endurance