Have you been told that modifying your car by adding after market products, like a custom exhaust system, will void the warranty? Here are 5 things you should know about The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, the federal law that protects you from bad warranties.
- The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (or Lemon Law) Was Passed To Protect Consumers From Deceptive Warranty Practices. The law covers implied and written warranties, and service agreements.
- Modifications Do Not Automatically Void Warranties. A common misconception is that aftermarket add-ons (AME) automatically void warranties. In fact, a warranty that states, implies or is used to support this is illegal. That doesn’t mean you can just modify away, but it does mean that a dealership refusing to fix your warrantied windshield wipers after you replaced your exhaust system with chrome is either misinformed or trying to get one by you.
- The Only Way To Void A Section Of A Warranty Through Modification Is If The Aftermarket Equipment Causes The Problem. A dealer or other service provider cannot void or refuse to honor a warranty simply because you’ve added some aftermarket items – he must be able to prove that these AMEs (Aftermarket Equipment) caused the problem. And saying it is not the same as proving it.
- The Law Does Not Vary From State To State. The Act is federal law which means even if you file suit in state court there isn’t a difference in the application of the law.
- A Warranty Cannot Stipulate Brand. Warranties can be voided due to all kinds of things: misuses, damage, deliberate lack of maintenance. What they can’t do is say you must use x brand of muffler in your vehicle. In fact, the only way they can do this is to provide the product to you, and install/replace it, free of charge.
Exhaust Systems Direct provides quality AME to customers and strongly suggests having a professional install them.