When you buy a new car, you expect it to drive without problems for at least a few years, so roadside assistance may not be high on your list of requirements. However, a number of car manufacturers offer roadside assistance as part of their standard warranty agreements knowing that if you do need it, you’ll be glad you have it.
Kia’s 10-year/100,000-mile warranty reflects their confidence in the reliability of their vehicles. However, they also offer roadside assistance as part of that warranty. Let’s take a closer look at what you can expect from Kia’s roadside assistance.
How Does Roadside Assistance Work?
If you have a roadside assistance program as part of your car’s warranty agreement, you usually don’t have to apply for it or meet any deductibles before you can use it. Depending on the model of your car, you might engage roadside assistance by:
- Calling a number provided in your car’s manual
- Pressing a button on the car’s dashboard or rearview mirror
- Using an app provided to you by the manufacturer
Once you contact roadside assistance, someone normally comes to help you within a brief period of time. The nature of the assistance they provide varies according to your need and the terms of the roadside assistance program.
Kia’s Roadside Assistance Program
The roadside assistance offered to new Kia owners extends up to five years or 60,000 miles, whichever you attain first. It provides 24/7 service and covers a range of situations, including:
- Towing your car to a nearby Kia dealership or other service location
- Supplying up to 2 gallons of gasoline if you’ve run out of gas
- Giving your car a jump start should your battery die
- Unlocking your car if you misplace your keys or your keys are damaged
- Providing assistance with a flat tire
- Offering a trip interruption reimbursement of up to $100 per day for three days if you are more than 150 miles from your destination to help cover the cost of hotels and food if the repair is going to take more than 24 hours
You can contact Kia’s roadside assistance from anywhere in the continental U.S. or Canada by dialing 1-800-333-4KIA (i.e., 4542). When you speak to the representative, provide your car’s VIN so they can verify eligibility. They will then dispatch someone to help you as soon as possible. Also give your location, license plate number, and car color so they can easily find you.
A more convenient way to engage the service may be to use Kia’s roadside assistance app. This not only alerts Kia that you need help, but it also gives them your GPS location so they can get to you quicker.
Pros and Cons To Consider
There are a number of advantages to Kia’s roadside assistance program, such as:
- It gives you peace of mind. Your new or reasonably new car should operate well, but there’s always the chance something can go wrong. Knowing that help is just a phone call away can give you peace of mind, especially if you have to travel a long distance.
- Kia has a large network of service providers. Kia boasts a network of 17,000 roadside assistance providers. This means there’s a good chance a service provider is close to your location wherever you are in the country and is able to provide help to you quickly.
- The service is built into your warranty. There are automotive clubs you can join that provide similar kinds of service, but you normally pay a monthly or annual fee for these. Kia’s roadside assistance program is available to you free of charge just for having a Kia that’s under warranty.
- It covers things that actually could happen. Rather than providing coverage for events that rarely occur, Kia’s roadside assistance program helps you with things like flat tires and dead batteries, which are among the most common reasons for automotive failure.
- You may be covered for both towing and repair. If the cause of your car’s breakdown is something that’s still under warranty, you may not have to pay for either towing or getting it fixed. Your roadside assistance coverage could cover transporting your car to the nearest Kia dealer or alternative service provider, and your warranty may cover getting the problem fixed.
The program also has some downsides that are worth noting, such as:
- There are financial limitations. There is a $75 per incident cap on gasoline, tire, lock-out, and jump-start assistance. For example, if the total cost of towing your car is $100, Kia will reimburse you $75, and you will be responsible for the remaining $25.
- There are physical restrictions. Kia expects you to have a usable spare tire, for example. Also, they will only provide gasoline to you twice per year.
- Repairs may be subject to operating hours. If your car needs to be towed to a repair shop, you can call roadside assistance any time of the day or night, on weekends, or on holidays. However, you may have to wait until the next morning or the next business day before the repair shop will attend to your vehicle.
- It’s only as good as your warranty. If your warranty expires, you will need to buy an extended warranty either from Kia or another provider to maintain the roadside assistance program. How much you pay for an extended warranty can depend upon factors such as your car’s age, model, and mileage, as well as the policy’s deductible and length of coverage.
- Your Kia may not be eligible. If your Kia is more than five years old, has high mileage, or is labeled “salvage” or a “total loss” by an insurance company, you are not eligible for roadside assistance.
Kia’s roadside assistance program is among the best in the industry, with useful features that can certainly give you peace of mind at little or no cost. If you’re evaluating whether to purchase a Kia, this program may factor into your decision. Some insurance companies offer similar services, so you may want to compare these against Kia’s program as part of your research.
At FIXD, our mission is to make car ownership as simple, easy, and affordable as possible. Our research team utilizes the latest automotive data and insights to create tools and resources that help drivers get peace of mind and save money over the life of their car.