This paper analyses the life cycle cost of equipment protected by both base and extended warranty policies from a consumer's perspective. We assume that the equipment has two types of failure: minor and catastrophic. A minor failure can be corrected with minimal repair whereas a catastrophic failure can only be removed by a replacement. It is assumed that equipment is maintained at no charge to the consumer during the warranty period, whereas the consumer is fully charged for any maintenance on failures after the extended warranty expires. We formulate the expected life cycle cost of the equipment under a general failure time distribution, and then for special cases we prove that the optimal replacement and extended warranty policies exists where the expected life cycle cost per unit time is minimised. This is examined with numerical examples. & 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved
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