CarMax Return Policy: Time Limit, Refund Options Explained

Short Answer: You can return a car to CarMax for any reason for a full refund within 30 days of purchase, as long as you’ve driven less than 1,500 miles. After the return period, you may be able to sell the car back to CarMax to recover the cost. For more on returning a car to CarMax, see below.

CarMax Return Policy

CarMax offers a 30-day Love Your Car Guarantee, meaning you can return your car any time within 30 days of purchase.[1][2] We contacted CarMax locations in California, Florida, Michigan, Texas, and Virginia to confirm this information. MaxCare service plans are also refundable, with refunds prorated based on the time you’ve had the car or miles driven (as previously reported).

Requirements

To receive a full refund under the Love Your Car Guarantee, you must drive less than 1,500 miles before returning the car.[3] Note that the car’s condition should be as it was when you bought the vehicle, with no new damage caused by you (such as scratches or dents).[1][2]

After 30 Days or Over 1,500 Miles

After the 30-day return window passes — or if you go over 1,500 miles within the return period — CarMax won’t accept your return. However, you may be able to sell the car back to CarMax to recover a portion of the cost. You’ll need to go through the standard appraisal process.[4] See our related research for details on the process of selling your car to CarMax.

If you choose to keep the car, note that CarMax offers a 90-day or 4,000-mile limited warranty on all vehicles,[5] which may be helpful to you if you encounter issues after the 30-day return period. Rather than returning the car, you may be able to get a repair. Optional MaxCare extended service plans also offer repair coverage for up to around 150,000 miles.

Return Process and Refunds

To return a CarMax vehicle, bring it back to the store where you bought it. The store will check the vehicle’s condition, check the odometer, and process your return.[1] Even if you received your car via home delivery, your purchase is associated with a store within 60 miles of your location;[6] you should contact the store associated with your purchase to make your return.

CarMax issues refunds by check and typically mails them within two weeks of the return date. Note that if you financed your CarMax purchase and had negative equity from a trade-in, you must still repay the negative equity. You can either repay it directly or apply for financing approval for a different vehicle.[1]