Reader Mailbag: What does a labor warranty cover?


In the rush of getting ready for the Ichi-Ban Best Buy Awards later this year the Treadmill Sensei has been a bit lax on answering reader emails. It’s not that I don’t love you guys, I’ve just been trying hard to get as many reviews done as possible and between running for hours a day on treadmills and ellipticals, and writing up reviews, all of my time seems to have disappeared! But never fear, it’s a slow day here at the DOJO and I’ve got a few minutes to open up the old Reader Mailbag to see what is in there.

Today we have a question I’m surprised I haven’t been asked more often. Calvin wants to know a bit more about what a labor warranty entails. Take it away, Calvin!

Treadmill Sensei,

I’ve been looking at various elliptical models, and the one thing that has me a bit puzzled … What exactly would the labor part of a warranty cover? It would obviously be varied with different manufacturers, but I was just wanting to get some idea.

Thanks! -Calvin


Thanks for the note and the great question. A full labor warranty (as opposed to a “limited labor warranty” you might see on some of the lower end equipment) should cover all costs incrued from a service or repair tech coming out to your location (home, office or whatever) to work on your treadmill or elliptical. It’s really that simple. In general, if your equipment is still under labor warranty and a manufacturer (or, more often, the retailer you purchased it from) tries to bill you or make you take the equipment to a location to get repaired, then you’re getting ripped off.

Now, different manufacturers have different terms in their warranties so make sure to read their supplied warranty information if you have any questions. The better manufacturers cover their warranties themselves while others require their retailers to cover them.

Now, and manufacturers will hate me for saying this, but I’d suggest calling in for service a month or two before your labor warranty is up — have your treadmill belt changed, get your elliptical all lubed up, have everything recalibrated and so on. And then, before your parts warranty is up, call again to get a new treadmill belt then as well – there’s not as much to do part-wise on an elliptical unless something actually goes wrong. Doing this will help get a longer life on your equipment.

I hope I’ve answered your question, Calvin. Thanks again for your email!

-The Treadmill Sensei

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