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What Qualifies for Roadside Assistance as Mechanical Disablement

While breakdowns are discouraging and problematic, Mopar Vehicle Protection warranties offer Roadside Assistance with towing options, making it much easier and less frustrating to seek assistance when you need help getting on your way again. However, not all vehicle breakdowns qualify as mechanical disablement under Roadside Assistance service of extended warranty plans. As defined, mechanical disablement is when your vehicle malfunctions to the point that it’s either impossible or dangerous to drive.

So even if you’ve selected a Mopar warranty and have a breakdown while traveling, you still may need to make sure the problem necessitates using your Roadside Assistance services. Let’s take look at some situations that qualify as mechanical disablement for obtaining roadside services under your Mopar extended service warranty. Remember, Roadside Assistance services identified in your Mopar Vehicle Protection Plan will only cover up to $100 per occurrence of these services if you call 888.517.4500 for prior authorization.

Faulty Alternator

Alternator problems are easy to identify since they indicate when the vehicle has battery issues but installing a new battery does not fix the problem. These problems can abruptly disable your car, SUV or truck when you’re driving, so you need to be alert for warning signs. For example, warnings can be flickering lights, dim headlights, alternator humming noise (bearings), voltage regulator and improper charging gauge function or the battery light staying on. Driving will usually limit how far you can drive with a faulty alternator because your battery power will eventually become exhausted, leaving you stranded. That’s when you should definitely call for Roadside Assistance.


An overheated engine typically is caused by a malfunctioning thermostat in the coolant system or broken hose, however, it also could be caused by weak antifreeze or a damaged head gasket. Regardless of the cause you should stop driving and call Roadside Assistance to locate a dealer and get towing. Driving your vehicle with this extreme heat condition could significantly damage the engine. So turning off the engine is the best way to minimize the negative effects of an overheated engine.

Broken Serpentine Belt

If the serpentine belt breaks, you definitely need to call Roadside Assistance for a tow truck. The serpentine belt powers the alternator, power steering, water pump, air conditioner, and above all, maintains the proper timing of the engine components. These belts are designed to last for 40-50 thousand miles, but to avoid an on-the-road breakdown you should check the belt for cracking on a regular basis and have it replaced as recommended.

Major Disabled Vehicle Conditions

Other causes of disabled vehicle conditions range from broken axles to bent rims and vehicles that just will not start, even when jumped. Such undetectable problems require repair shop analysis, and are, in most cases, unsafe to solve alongside the road. This type of car and truck trouble definitely requires towing the vehicle to a Ford or Lincoln dealer under the Roadside Assistance coverage of your Mopar Vehicle Protection Plan.

Other Mechanical Disablements without Towing

Other more common vehicle disablements include flat tire replacement, dead battery jump starts, lockout situations and running out of gas. These problems, however, will be done at the disablement site and do not qualify for towing. Sometimes help is nearby, but regardless of where your car or truck trouble occurs, you can always call for Roadside Assistance if you have your vehicle covered with Maximum Care, Added Care Plus or Powertrain Care Plus. And that can give you real peace of mind on a road trip!

You can learn more about Mopar’s Roadside Assistance provided by Cross Country Motor Club by calling the Roadside Assistance Hotline at 800.521.2779.

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