Frequently Asked Questions
Will my repair be covered under my contract?
Coverage of repairs is determined by your contract guidelines. There are always certain exclusions of coverage but we make every effort to approve covered claims without delay. It is important to note that if your vehicle experiences a breakdown, you must contact us for instructions and to receive authorization before any work is performed on the vehicle, including any diagnostic work.
We reserve the right to inspect your vehicle in its original condition at the time of the breakdown. Therefore, all work done without prior authorization from DOWC will result in denial of coverage and will not be reimbursed or otherwise paid by us. We may also require you to return your vehicle to one of our preferred repair facilities, depending on its location when a breakdown occurs.
You can always refer to your vehicle service contract to determine if a certain part or component is covered. If you would like us to explain coverage, just give us a call. One of our experts will be happy to assist you.
Are diagnostic fees covered under my contract?
Diagnostic fees are covered under an approved claim for a covered repair. To determine whether repairs and diagnostic fees will be covered, you must take steps to have the initial diagnosis of a breakdown or needed repair approved before any repair work is performed. The first step is to contact us to receive authorization to proceed. Next, take your vehicle to a repair facility for a diagnosis. The repair facility should then contact us at 201-777-1000 to begin a claim. DOWC will review the claim and determine coverage. The repair facility will notify you directly regarding covered repairs, including diagnostic fees.
How do I locate a repair facility?
Your selling dealer may have a tie-back to their repair shop or a preferred shop where repairs would be performed. This information can be found on the face page of your contract, or you may contact us directly for assistance. If your selling dealer does not have a tie-back, we would be happy to help you locate a licensed repair facility in your area. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 201-777-1000. You can also search RepairPal.com/dowc. Simply enter your zip code for a list of local shops that includes their location, business hours, and phone number.
What is a tie-back area?
This means the area as determined by mileage distance from the selling dealer’s location(s). If a breakdown occurs within your dealer’s tie-back area, DOWC reserves the right to require you to return your vehicle to one of our preferred repair facilities.
What is a VIN number?
A VIN is a vehicle identification number. This number is 17 digits long and specifically identifies your vehicle. You can find it in one of several places on your vehicle including inside the driver’s-side door, in the lower left corner of the windshield, or on the front of the engine block under the hood. The number is also listed on your insurance card and registration paperwork.
What is a deductible and how does it work?
A deductible is a small amount that you elect to pay towards any claim that you may have. For example, if your deductible is $100 and your repair costs for a breakdown are $2,500, you would pay $100* and we would pay $2,400.
*In addition to your deductible, you are responsible for shop fees, disposal fees, and, in some states, taxes.
What is covered under my contract?
Check your individual Vehicle Service Contract for details. Your contract includes a comprehensive list of the components that are or are not covered, under What Is Covered and What Is Not Covered, within the contract pages.
Is my contract still valid?
This information can be found on the face page of your contract, under Service Contract Information. Look for the Contract Term, which is the indicated number months from service contract purchase date, and miles from the odometer reading at the time of vehicle purchase. Your contract expires on whichever of the following is reached first: The term date or the term mileage limit.
Can I transfer my contract?
Yes. Contact us for a transfer request form. Submit a copy of the completed form within 30 days of the vehicle sale, along with a copy of your service contract and a copy of the bill of sale that indicates the date of sale. A transfer fee of $100.00 will apply.
How do I cancel my contract?
Not all contracts are cancelable. Please reach out to your selling dealer to inquire about the cancellation process or refer to the last pages of your contract for this information. You may also contact us for guidance. To obtain a copy of your contract, contact us at 201-777-1000 or email@example.com. A $50.00 cancellation fee will apply.
My contract is due to expire. Can I purchase a new contract?
Currently, we do not sell directly to consumers. Contract purchases are made at the dealer level, at the time you purchase your vehicle. You may contact us directly to further discuss at 201-777-1000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I need towing.
Our roadside assistance is available 24/7, 365 days a year. Call 1-855-411-6648.
U.S. Auto customers, call 877-578-3564.
Is towing covered under my contract?
Most Vehicle Service Contracts include towing of up to 50 miles at no cost. Any additional mileage will be your responsibility and payment for that portion must be made by you at the time service is rendered. Additional roadside assistance services available to you at no cost could include battery jump start, flat tire change, and locksmith services. Delivery of fuel, oil, and water is also available as a covered service, though the cost of the materials themselves would be your responsibility.
How do I get reimbursed for rental, out-of-pocket repair, or towing expenses?
Email email@example.com for a link to securely upload your paperwork, including your mailing address, phone number, and last six digits of your VIN. We will let you know that we received your request and put it in process immediately.
Rental Reimbursement: Is car rental covered under my contract?
Not all contracts offer rental reimbursement. We would be happy to email you a copy of your contract detailing this information. Please request a copy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
If Rental Reimbursement is part of your coverage, your provider (DOWC) reimburses your rental expenses resulting from a breakdown that causes your vehicle to be inoperable or unsafe to drive and necessitates it being held for eight hours or more by a repair facility for a covered repair, as outlined by your service contract.
How do I file a GAP claim?
To file a claim, please visit our website at https://claims.dowc.com and create an account. After you have created an account, an activation email will be sent to you. After activation, your GAP claim can be submitted. Once received, one of our representatives will begin the review process on your claim.
How do I file a Key Protection claim?
To file a claim, please visit our website at https://claims.dowc.com and create an account. After you have created an account, an activation email will be sent to you. You can contact us at 201-777-1000 or reach out to your manufacturer dealer and they will contact us directly.
What is my addendum number?
Your addendum number is your contract number, which is located on the top right-hand corner of the first page of your contract.
How do I get in touch with my selling dealer?
I need help.
What are my responsibilities as a contract holder?
Read and understand your vehicle service contract to know what is covered, what is not covered, and what can potentially void your plan.
Keep receipts and service records to create a comprehensive record of all your maintenance services.
Make sure that the odometer and all gauges, warning sensors, and lights are working properly at all times, including the oil warning and temperature warning lights/gauges. Do not drive your vehicle if a warning light is active.
Monitor your vehicle’s gauges and warning lights, as noted above. If any lights or gauges indicate a problem, you are required to safely and immediately pull your vehicle off the road and shut off the engine. Contact us, or your preferred provider, for immediate roadside assistance.
At your expense, satisfy the maintenance requirements set forth in your service contract and maintain your vehicle according to the vehicle manufacturer’s specifications, including but not limited to scheduled oil changes, lubrication of the steering components and suspension, transmission fluid changes, differential fluid changes, and other fluid level checks and refilling when required. Have your car serviced on time by scheduling this routine maintenance.
Common EV-Related Terms
EV Protection Guide
Batteries: The source of energy in EVs. They are recharged by connecting the vehicle to an electrical outlet or charging station.
Battery Pack: The entirety of an EV’s battery. It is composed of thousands of battery cells grouped together in battery modules, all contained in a protective structural enclosure.
Carbon Footprint: The combined greenhouse gas emissions generated by a person, place or thing.
Charging: Connecting an EV to an external power source to replenish the battery power.
Charging Station: Publicly available locations where EV owners can charge their vehicle.
Charging Point: Any charging device, public or private, through which an EV can be charged.
Degradation: The loss of a battery’s ability to hold a charge. EV batteries degrade slowly, typically at a rate of 1% to 2% per year.
Electric Vehicle (EV): A vehicle powered either partially or entirely by an electric battery.
Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE): Infrastructure that supplies power to an EV. EVSE creates two-way communication between the charging station and EV that ensures the battery does not overcharge.
EPA Rated: The measurement of a vehicle’s efficiency as tested by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Emergency Roadside Service (ERS): A service that sends assistance to motorists when their vehicles suffer a mechanical failure or are otherwise inoperable.
Extreme Temperatures: Significantly high or low temperatures that have a negative effect on an EV’s efficiency.
Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Byproduct gases emitted by internal combustion engine cars that trap heat within Earth’s atmosphere, causing a greenhouse effect that contributes to climate change.
Home Charging Unit: A specialized charging device installed at a private residence. Many EV owners opt to upgrade to home charging units as they typically provide Level 2 charging, as opposed to the Level 1 charging of a household outlet.
Hybrid Electric Vehicle: A type of car that uses both an internal combustion engine and an electric motor for improved fuel economy.
Internal Combustion Engine (ICE): The gas-powered source of energy in traditional cars. Byproducts of an internal combustion engine include harmful emissions such as carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide.
Incentive: Givebacks to purchasers of an EV and/or EV infrastructure. These incentives can include tax credits, rebates, discounted toll fare, etc.
Level 1 Charging: The slowest form of charging, Level 1 is usually done at home using a standard 120V household outlet. Level 1 charging takes several hours to fully replenish an EV battery.
Level 2 Charging: Level 2 charging is significantly faster than Level 1, adding roughly 20-50 miles of range per hour. Level 2 chargers need to be professionally installed to be used residentially. Most public charging stations are Level 2.
Lithium-Ion Battery: The type of battery used on most EVs due to its high energy density and ability to be continually recharged.
On-Board Charger: A device found in EVs that converts alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC) to charge the battery.
Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV): A type of hybrid car with batteries that can be charged externally (as opposed to traditional hybrids, which accumulate energy from features like regenerative braking).
Powertrain: The set of components that generate energy and deliver that energy to a vehicle’s wheels. An electric powertrain consists mainly of a battery pack, energy converter and electric motor.
Range: The distance an EV can travel on a single full charge.
Regenerative Braking: A system found in most EVs that captures the energy created by braking and transfers it to the car’s battery.
Supercharger: Tesla’s propriety EV charger that can only be used on Tesla vehicles. According to the automaker, these powerful chargers can add up to 200 miles of range in as little as 15 minutes. Tesla owns and operates a network of more than 35,000 superchargers across North America.
State of Charge: The level of charge an EV battery has at any given time relative to its capacity.
Tax Credit: A financial incentive that subtracts the amount of the credit from a taxpayer’s federal or state tax bill.
Torque: A way to measure the force that causes objects to twist or rotate. Electric cars generally have high torque, giving them quick acceleration from a standstill.
Traction Motor: The motor found in an EV that uses power from the battery to drive the vehicle’s wheels, propelling the car forward.
Total Cost of Ownership (TCO): The complete financial cost of owning a vehicle, including, but not limited to, the price paid for the car, as well as registration, insurance, maintenance and energy costs.
Warranty: A contract issued to the purchaser of a vehicle guaranteeing the manufacturer will cover all repairs and/or replacements during a specified period of time.
Zero Emissions Vehicle (ZEH): A vehicle that emits no exhaust gas or other pollutants while in use.
Type 1 Connector: A device attached to the end of a power cord that connects to an EV. Type 1 is a five-pin, AC plug. It is standard in the U.S. and can reach a charge of up to 7kW.
Type 2 Connector: A device attached to the end of a power cord that connects to an EV. Type 2 is a seven-pin, AC plug that can reach power levels of up to 22 kW at home and 43kW at a public charging station.