Should you buy an extended warranty?

by Categorized: Consumer Electronics (TV, Customer Service Date:

A tech column (by me), courtesy of Tribune Newspapers:

So you’ve done the research, and now you’re walking into a local retail store to buy the best big-screen HDTV at the best price.

Yet you walk out with an HDTV and something you never imagined you’d buy with it — an extended warranty that adds more than 25 percent to the television’s purchase price. How did that happen?

Retailers don’t want consumers leaving the store without one. By some estimates, extended warranties account for more than half of Best Buy’s profits. Case study: A Panasonic Viera 50-inch plasma HDTV, model TC-P50ST60, is one of the year’s best television values. It was $999.99 recently at Best Buy’s website. A five-year extended warranty costs $249.99, pushing the television’s total expense to $1,249.98.

More . . .

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