A car warranty is a legal agreement between you, the new car owner, and the auto manufacturer.
However, like all legal agreements, certain expectations need to be met in order for the auto manufacturer to cover the cost of repairs and other benefits. The expectations for keeping your end of the car warranty may be difficult to find within all of the paperwork associated with the warranty.
We have taken some of the guesswork out of navigating your car warranty by providing some common items that would void your car warranty.
1. Not Maintaining Car Service Standards
Maintaining a car is a huge part of car ownership, not only for your personal safety but also for your vehicle’s reliability.
Schedule of Maintenance
Standards of what the car manufacturer expects for regular vehicle maintenance are outlined in your car warranty. Each warranty may have different standards, so it is important to read what is expected as the new car owner.
You will be required by the auto manufacturer to adhere to their schedule of regular maintenance, otherwise the auto manufacturer may consider your lack of maintenance as neglect of the car and void the warranty.
Personal Maintenance of the Car
Something that is not very well known is that you could void your car warranty by changing the oil yourself.
Should you need to use your car warranty, you will need to provide documented proof that you have maintained the vehicle according to their standards and used certified local repair facilities. It is important to save your receipts for every fluid change and part replacement; with this documentation your warranty should stay active.
Not using the proper fluids in your car could entirely void or partially void your warranty. Poor quality fluids or new but dirty fluids would be considered inappropriate or improper. If these fluids are found, then your auto manufacturer may choose to not honor any guarantees offered to your vehicle or to a specific component of the car, such as the engine.
2. Deliberate or Accidental Abuse of the Car
Abuse or misuse of a car or vehicle suggests anything that is outside normal operation of the car. It might be very tempting to take that new 4×4 off-roading, but it could void your warranty. Off-roading, racing, overloading, or any type of activity that could excessively wear parts could void your warranty.
3. Adding Performance Items or Aftermarket Parts
While it might be tempting to add cold air intake systems, performance chips in the engine, or even extreme brakes, these items could void your warranty.
According to Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975, a dealer must provide evidence that the aftermarket part or component played a role in causing damages to the car. If they can provide this evidence, then they can void the warranty.
4. A Salvage Title is Issued for the Car
Often an insurance provider will declare a vehicle totaled when the cost of repair exceeds the value of the car or vehicle. If an insurance provider declares your car as totaled, then a salvage title is issued for the car. If that happens, then the auto manufacturer warranty is automatically voided.
While having a salvage title is a non-issue for those who are buying a brand-new car it is something to consider for those people who are purchasing a car with a previous owner. Ask to see the car title of the car you are attempting to purchase before making a final decision.
5. Damage from Storms
Unfortunately, many people believe that their auto manufacturer’s warranty will cover damage done by hailstorms, floods, and many other damages caused by storms, however, that is not the case. Auto manufacturer’s warranties are often voided if the car experiences excessive damage due to a storm.
6. Rolling Back or Altering an Odometer
While most people will not go out of their way to roll back an odometer, you may find yourself in this situation if a car is purchased from a local used car lot or from a private party. Most car warranties will be reliant on the mileage of a vehicle.
Any time a situation occurs where tracking the mileage of the car becomes impossible, such as having the odometer removed, disconnected, or tampered with in any way the entire car warranty will be voided.
7. Changes to the Car’s Lift or Tires
Making changes to the car’s lift or tires could alter how the car preserves the miles that it travels. An extra inch in the size of the tires could throw off the rotation speed and change how the vehicle’s computer computes speed to the speedometer and distance traveled to the odometer.
Altering how the odometer measures a mile will void the car’s warranty. It is important if you are considering changing the lift or the tires of the vehicle to seek out professional assistance with a certified specialist to program the car’s computer with the appropriate measurements all within the auto manufacturer’s warranty.
Contact Experienced Lemon Law Attorneys
With any legal document, it is important to read your auto manufacturer’s warranty and understand the terms and conditions that they lay out. Understand that some auto manufacturer’s warranties may be strict while others may be more lenient.
Robison Lemon Law Group can help with understanding your warranties as well as dealing with an auto manufacturer when you have had your car warranty voided.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.