Tag Archives: warranty

Void My Warranty

Will Upgrades Void My Warranty?

The Dealer Told Me Aftermarket Upgrades Would Void My Warranty

We hear it all the time during Jeep-build consultations.  Picture this: Clients considering the purchase of a new Jeep come in to Axleboy Off-Road with questions about suspension upgrades, new bumpers, fenders, new tires, etc.  We enjoy taking about Jeep upgrades, local Jeep clubs and trails so a discussion may take anywhere from 45 to 90 minutes.  Somewhere during the conversations we’ll get a comment that goes something along the lines of, “I was talking to the salesman at the dealership and he told me that anything other than MOPAR components would void the warranty on my Jeep.  Is this true?”

True or False?

That is a fantastic and very relevant question!  The answer is a resounding “sort of”.  Perhaps an example is the best way to illustrate this issue.  If you were to purchase a brand new Jeep Wrangler today, with a 5 year warranty that covers the engine, transmission, cooling systems, electronic components, suspension and a bunch of other stuff, and then tomorrow you had Axleboy install a 4-inch Teraflex long-arm lift kit, the suspension portion of your factory warranty would be void.  So, “Yes” there is, in fact, some truth behind that statement.  The greatest deceptions always contain an element of truth.

Be aware that there are some sales people that will claim any aftermarket upgrades completely strip and void the factory warranty.  Most of the sales people in this category are simply repeating what they’ve heard other sales people say or they lack sufficient experience to know better, so they make up whatever sounds most profitable for them.

Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act

The fact is, over 40 years ago, back in 1975, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) passed legislation as part of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act to ensure you have the freedom to choose aftermarket upgrades and parts without having your warranty stripped or terminated.

What does this mean?

Simply put, when you upgrade to aftermarket suspension, the dealership cannot void the warranty on your engine, electronics, cooling system and other covered components.  All of those other systems and components remain covered for the duration of the warranty term.  If a dealership believes upgrading one component caused failure in a different area they may deny a warranty claim, but first they are required to prove correlation between the aftermarket upgrade and the other covered item (ie. Engine, Transmission, Differential, etc.)

It is illegal to deny coverage or void a factory warranty based on the use of aftermarket parts. If a dealer has denied your claim under a new-vehicle warranty and you believe it is in violation of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, a complaint can and should be filed online with the Federal Trade Commission.

New Parts Policy

Axleboy: Parts Policy

Experiencing a vehicle breakdown can be both stressful and expensive.  One way that some folks attempt to alleviate the financial burden of paying for repairs is by ordering and supplying their own parts.

It’s nearly impossible for local shops to compete with the majority of prices found on sites like Amazon, Ebay and Northridge4x4. For the DIY or shade-tree mechanic, this offers an easy way to cut costs, but we’re finding more and more legitimate businesses are turning down work to install “customer supplied” parts.

Work is work, right? So who cares where the parts come from?  There was a time when we would have agreed and gladly taken any type of work that came through the door.

For the past couple of years, we have struggled to find that perfect balance between quantity and our commitment to quality.  At long last, we have reached the determination that quality is truly our primary corporate social responsibility.  With that being said, Axleboy no longer installs “customer supplied” parts.

This decision was reached based on the following factors:

  1. Axleboy has spent years developing and maintaining vendor relationships.  This is significant because when our technicians have problems with how a part installs or performs on a vehicle, we can obtain technical support, send it back and/or negotiate product upgrades.
  2. Incorrect parts cost too much time and money for everyone involved.  If we are doing anything on a vehicle related to suspension or drivetrain, once we put that vehicle on the lift, it tends to stay there until the job is complete.  When a customer supplies their own parts and things don’t match up perfectly, production comes to a halt until correct parts are ordered, shipped to the customer and eventually make their way to our mechanic.  In the meantime, our customer may go days without his/her vehicle and we are able to service fewer vehicles which may drive other aspects of our schedule out of alignment.  By contrast, we stock several parts, so if one component of a kit is not perfect, we can generally replace it pretty quick. Even when we don’t stock a particular part, we can almost always source replacements from one of our local suppliers or have it overnight shipped directly to us, which helps to reduce the delay time.
  3. Liability.  When an auto shop installs parts that were supplied by the customer, and those parts do not work properly, who is held responsible?  Even when the shop installs everything correctly and the part itself fails, from a legal standpoint, the shop is held accountable for the complete job (service and parts).  We’re not saying that everybody is trying to “pull one over” on the automotive shop, but you know there’s always that one bad apple that sets a precedent.
  4. Ultimately we are committed to providing total customer care.  What this means to us is: When customers have questions, we answer them.  When we quote a price, we stand beside that quote.  If something we installed or worked on doesn’t function properly, we’ll do what it takes to make things work right.  Taking care of our customers is our top priority and when we provide parts, we can confidently stand behind their quality before, during and after installation.