You just got a brand-new car and you feel like you’re on the moon! Most new car owners want to do whatever they can to extend the life of their vehicle. This includes performing proper maintenance, using high-quality fuel, and replacing old, worn-down parts with newer alternatives. But new owners often overlook the manufacturer’s warranty. The warranty is a promise that, for a certain period of time, the manufacturer will repair any defects or damage to the vehicle and cover the cost of repairs. If you want to ensure the longevity of your vehicle, you can’t void the manufacturer’s warranty. But some incredibly simple—and common—mistakes can lead to a voided warranty. How can you avoid them? Familiarizing yourself with them is a good start. Here are some common things that will void your car warranty.
(Some) Performance Mods
If you want to beef up your vehicle with some performance modifications, you must learn which mods can void your warranty. Luckily, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act protects most aftermarket modifications. This act states that manufacturers can’t void your warranty because you used aftermarket parts, unless they can prove that the parts in question caused damage to the vehicle.
However, some mods are almost guaranteed to void your warranty. This includes tuners. Because they modify the entire power train (which makes up most of your vehicle’s components), manufacturers can claim that tuners are the reason behind just about every defect or malfunction that exists. You can substitute tuners for performance modules, which perform the same function but don’t leave a trace on the vehicle’s ECU. This means manufacturers can’t prove you modded anything).
This might not come as much of a surprise, but manufacturers can refuse to cover damage resulting from reckless driving. This includes using your vehicle for off-roading, racing, or hauling more than it can handle. The next time you consider racing a stranger at a stoplight, ask yourself if it’s worth voiding your car warranty. Chances are, you’ll decide the burst of adrenaline isn’t worth the loss in protection.
The next oil change can always wait a few months…can’t it? Not unless you want to risk voiding your manufacturer’s warranty. This is one of the most common things that will void your car warranty. You must perform basic upkeep regularly. If those late oil changes lead to the engine sputtering, components warping or wearing out, or complete engine failure, don’t expect the warranty to cover the repairs—if you’ve been slacking on maintenance, the manufacturer can use it as a reason to deny you coverage. To avoid problems, follow your vehicle’s recommended maintenance schedule.