Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act
One of the most common questions we get is "will adding aftermarket parts void my warranty?" Truth be told, it's a valid concern. Some uneducated dealerships seem to tell customers that using non-OEM parts will void the factory warranty.
However, that couldn't be further from the truth. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act was passed way back in 1975 to combat this exact subject, and ensure that you have the freedom to choose aftermarket parts and upgrades without having your warranty stripped or voided.
The SEMA Bill Of Rights conclude:
- You have the RIGHT to buy high-quality, reliable aftermarket accessory, performance and replacement parts – an affordable and convenient alternative to vehicle maker’s parts.
- You have the RIGHT to use high-quality aftermarket parts and know that your new car warranty claims will be honored. In fact, your dealer may not reject warranty claims simply because an aftermarket part is present. A warranty denial in such circumstances may be proper only if an aftermarket part caused the failure being claimed.
- You have the RIGHT to patronize independent retail stores for vehicle parts and installation. The U.S. aftermarket offers the world’s finest selection of performance and replacement parts, accessories and styling options. These aftermarket products satisfy the most discriminating customers seeking personalized vehicles for today’s lifestyle.
Dealerships and car companies are REQUIRED to prove that any modification of the vehicle with aftermarket parts is the cause of the failure. Even if the part in question caused the failure, it does not mean the warranty is void. For example, if you install a turbo kit on your Jeep Wrangler and you suffered from engine damage, any other portion of the warranty (i.e. climate controls, radio, etc.) would still cover those items.
A few years back, the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) issued a Consumer Alert confirming that it is in fact illegal to void warranties or deny coverage for use of aftermarket parts. Read the full Consumer Alert here.
If the failure to honor a warranty claim involves the new vehicle warranty, and it appears that the dealer improperly denied the claim, file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) online at www.ftc.gov, or call 202-326-3128.