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Old 21st November 2011, 21:43   #1
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Default The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

I've been noticing that many, many people are worried about upgrading even the tiniest of things, thinking that companies will void warranty. Now some of those things may be helpful to them in a huge way but yet in the back of their mind they are worried about the warranty getting void.

This thread will hopefully clear up a few doubts some of you may have on your warranty getting void, or maybe help in arguing with your dealer in case they want to be stuck up fools and void your warranty for no mistake of yours.

First and foremost, let me say a big part of your warranty getting void depends on your relationship with the dealer, and your talking skills. Now if you are friendly with your service people or can get friendly with them easily you should have no worries about doing a few minor upgrades here or there because the service people will be on your side. Then again if you know you have done no wrong and still the service guys want to void your warranty, just talk it out and maybe escalate it to the superiors. The bottom line is if you know the guys you can get away with even an engine swap (ok not literally) but if you don't (Or you go to some insane dealership) then they will decline warranty for even a seat cover upgrade.

Secondly, even if you do cut wires and upgrade your music system, and your fuel pump conks off. The dealer cannot tell you your warranty is void. Because if the wires are cut the maximum they can void is your electrical warranty. This is just an example. So some common sense is required for dealerships like that who just try and find even a small fault to void warranty and give some half baked explanation to try and prove it.


Now I'll write a short bit on some commonly used accessories which people are hesitant to fit -

Sunfilms - Yes I've seen people thinking twice about installing sunfilms because of 'warranty'. Please go ahead and install sunfilms. Your warranty just cannot be void, it just can't. lol.

Rims and Tyres - Well this can be a bit dicey sometimes. Generally no one will bother you about a + one upgrade i.e if you make your tyres a bit wider, or upgrade to 1" bigger rims. For rims see that the offset is pretty much the same, if they are deepdish or have a huge lip then the dealer may be right. Now if you have a lower variant and upgrade to the size of a higher variant even with non OE wheels it is perfectly fine and the dealer has no right to void warranty. Sometimes if your car is sold abroad with larger wheels and tyres you can probably even upgrade to those. This again depends on your talking skills.

Air Filters and Exhausts - If you do in for a drop in filter i.e a stock replacement filter then the warranty should not be void. So go ahead with this for the slightly better breathing your engine gets. In theory even if you go for something bolt on, maybe like an air intake kit like a typhoon you may just be able to argue your way out of getting your warranty void. But the stock replacement is a safe option, and yes it can make a difference in terms of performace depending on the engine. Again the exhaust if bolt on you might be able to argue your way out of it. Or just make sure that only your exhaust related warranty is void. Warranty not being void for exhausts is rare though, just to warn you.

Lighting upgrades - Headlights not bright enough? Go ahead and upgrade. If you change the bulbs to a different bulb with the same wattage, maybe say a Philips Extreme Power then the company cannot say anything to you since the wattage is the same as stock. If you want higher wattage, then as long as separate wires are used along with relays and cutouts generally no one will really bother you. Same for HIDs, they use a totally different set of wires so don't be worried in going for them. For these it largely depends on the installation, and as long as a neat job is done with proper connectors used etc then its really not a big deal at all.

ICE upgrades - This is what most are scared of. But why? For head units for most cars there are wiring harnesses available. So there will be no cutting of wires for installing an aftermarket HU. Also get speakers of the same size as original speakers or even use spacers. If installing an amp then make sure to leave the original speaker wiring as is and run new cables to the amp and from the amp to the speakers. Same in the case of installing a sub woofer. The logic is that you have not touched the factory wiring, and it is left alone so they really cannot void your electrical warranty.

OEM part Upgrades - On cars like Skodas, VWs, and BMWs many OE parts and accessories are sold internationally. They are plug and play and fit perfectly. Let me take the example of Skodas. The Yeti doesn't come with bluetooth in India but there is an accessory available in the UK which will make your Yeti bluetooth compatible. It is plug and play and probably takes 2 hours to install. It is an original Skoda accessory. So a Skoda dealer cannot say anything to you at all. Same is for other cars, everything from bluetooth modules to sports seats to paddle shifts and steering wheels are available. If its an original part for your car don't hesitate to upgrade.

For all Tuning Boxes - Only one thing to say. Remove before giving your car for a service, unless you have bought it from the dealer like the MKB tuning boxes sold by Autohangar for Mercedes.

Will add to this if I think of more. Please add your own if you want.


SO guys, please go and enjoy your cars. And don't hesitate to make them better, because no car is perfect. But you can make it almost perfect with some of these small upgrades. Hopefully this post has helped a few people.

Last edited by Akshay1234 : 21st November 2011 at 21:56.
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Old 21st November 2011, 21:51   #2
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Thank you Akshay. This is going to be of great help to the community.

Now my question - What about tuning boxes (a'la Petes, DieselTronic, RaceChip, et al)?

This has been discussed a lot many time in various threads. Just wanted to bring this question here and get an almost definitive answer to it.

Last edited by iceman7 : 21st November 2011 at 21:53.
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Old 21st November 2011, 23:41   #3
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Quote:
Originally Posted by akshay1234 View Post
Warranty not being void for exhausts is rare though, just to warn you.
Could you please elaborate on what reasons they give for warranty being void? I am asking because I may have a problem with one of the vehicles exhaust 16 month old Accord of my cousin. The exhaust sound is very different from what it used to be.

Also
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They will decline warranty for even a seat cover upgrade.

I have heard of this happening.
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Old 22nd November 2011, 01:21   #4
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Now I guess I can go ahead and change the DRLs on my jetta to LEDs. I have already requested my brother to bring them down from the US when he returns next month.
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Old 22nd November 2011, 09:10   #5
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Totally agree with you on this. Upgrades and personalisations mentioned here should not void warranty if you know what you are doing and don't cross the line. But general attitude among dealers is that when you ask them " I want to do this, will it void my warranty?" , invariably the answer is yes to any jobs which you intend to do outside the dealership. I guess they try to play safe so as to avoid responsibility if something goes wrong.
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Old 22nd November 2011, 16:59   #6
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Quote:
Originally Posted by akshay1234 View Post
This again depends on your talking skills.
So if i were to put DRLs on my car & upsize my tyres should i get it in writing that it is alright from the dealer where i am getting my car from (as that is not where my car is going to be serviced) or should it be with the servicing centre where i intend to get my car serviced before i install the afore mentioned & here also do i get it in writing?
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Old 22nd November 2011, 17:21   #7
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

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Originally Posted by himavanth_m View Post
Could you please elaborate on what reasons they give for warranty being void? I am asking because I may have a problem with one of the vehicles exhaust 16 month old Accord of my cousin. The exhaust sound is very different from what it used to be.
I meant more in terms of them voiding warranty for aftermarket exhausts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by druk75 View Post
Now I guess I can go ahead and change the DRLs on my jetta to LEDs. I have already requested my brother to bring them down from the US when he returns next month.
Yes you can go ahead and change them. But do check up on which brand, read briskoda and vwvortex because some LEDs melt or stop working. So just be sure. I mean if the LED melts in your housing and some part has to be changed then don't expect VW to honor warranty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
Totally agree with you on this. Upgrades and personalisations mentioned here should not void warranty if you know what you are doing and don't cross the line. But general attitude among dealers is that when you ask them " I want to do this, will it void my warranty?" , invariably the answer is yes to any jobs which you intend to do outside the dealership. I guess they try to play safe so as to avoid responsibility if something goes wrong.
The dealers over here will try and say your warranty is void for anything. Of course they want you to install any accessory from them so that they can get a cut even though the installation carried out by them is substandard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvinashV View Post
So if i were to put DRLs on my car & upsize my tyres should i get it in writing that it is alright from the dealer where i am getting my car from (as that is not where my car is going to be serviced) or should it be with the servicing centre where i intend to get my car serviced before i install the afore mentioned & here also do i get it in writing?
I don't think you will get it in writing. But it depends more on the service centre. If the DRLs are installed properly, without cutting wires, like the Philips DRLs come with some neat system where no wire has to be spliced then the dealers won't really bother you.

Upsized tyres will never cause an issue. Unless you really upsize them.
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Old 23rd November 2011, 00:15   #8
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Iam currently having a similar experience with a skoda dealer, who says i cant put in a HU of my choice, but i have to choose from the one that is available with them. Ridiculous indeed!!
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Old 23rd November 2011, 07:00   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman7 View Post
Now my question - What about tuning boxes (a'la Petes, DieselTronic, RaceChip, et al)?
Almost always - warranty will be said to be void. Why the doubt ?
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Old 23rd November 2011, 08:05   #10
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

Not disagreeing with anything you say Akshay, but the fact remains that some carmakers in India are really just looking for an excuse to deny you service, which I find appalling. In my case, the VW dealer flatly told me that upgrading to a 20 mm thicker tread in same rim size will void the warranty While this is ludicrous (Polos run on 16 and even 17 inchers abroad) I am in position to argue with him in case something DOES go wrong with the car. Ditto for the HU upgrade- you must have seen the threads and posts of pre-refresh vento owners lamenting the sad little OE HU they've popped in there. Even with a direct-fit custom-made HU change, VW claims they will void the warranty! My accessories guy has a direct contact at VW and assured me that they would never void the warranty and that he'd help me if anything went wrong but something in the back of my mind made me think twice.
I will hold on to the car pure stock (except the leather seats, which I didn't ask about!) and go crazy the moment Jan of 2013 arrives!
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Old 23rd November 2011, 12:42   #11
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Almost always - warranty will be said to be void. Why the doubt ?
No No... My question was - While we may detach the box when we leave the car for a service, can the service center pick up that the car uses a Tuning Box through some log in the ECU?
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Old 23rd November 2011, 13:40   #12
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Default Re: The Thread To Clear Up All Your Warranty FAQs

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No No... My question was - While we may detach the box when we leave the car for a service, can the service center pick up that the car uses a Tuning Box through some log in the ECU?
I believe not.
For the swift, I read on t-bhp that you disconnect the battery for 15 min, it resets the ECU too. There would be something on the similar lines for other cars too.

Last edited by f1fan : 23rd November 2011 at 13:43.
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Old 23rd November 2011, 18:13   #13
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Not disagreeing with anything you say Akshay, but the fact remains that some carmakers in India are really just looking for an excuse to deny you service, which I find appalling. In my case, the VW dealer flatly told me that upgrading to a 20 mm thicker tread in same rim size will void the warranty While this is ludicrous (Polos run on 16 and even 17 inchers abroad) I am in position to argue with him in case something DOES go wrong with the car. Ditto for the HU upgrade- you must have seen the threads and posts of pre-refresh vento owners lamenting the sad little OE HU they've popped in there. Even with a direct-fit custom-made HU change, VW claims they will void the warranty! My accessories guy has a direct contact at VW and assured me that they would never void the warranty and that he'd help me if anything went wrong but something in the back of my mind made me think twice.
Well that is the whole point of this thread. The dealers will tell you stuff like that and it does manage to stop most people from upgrading anything. Now if you had got 20mm thicker tyres, the side profile would still be the same. So even if some part did fail in the suspension you could it is impossible to be due to the tyres. I've never seen anyones warranty taken because of a normal +1 upsize. And those 20mm of tread could be a lifesaver if you do a lot of highway driving. Sometimes the upgrade is a necessity for your safety.

And even the HU if you had changed it and got the wiring harness and left all wires stock. Then even if the dealer tried to void your warranty he would have to no base to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman7 View Post
No No... My question was - While we may detach the box when we leave the car for a service, can the service center pick up that the car uses a Tuning Box through some log in the ECU?
For a normal service it will never be detected. Though if you have ECU problems and a company person with more advanced diagnostics reviews it then there is a tiny chance it may be seen. But 99.9% of the time no.
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Old 23rd November 2011, 19:05   #14
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Lovely thread.

I did a "complex, unusual" tyre upgrade. I went to smaller rims, but wider and higher profile. More details here: (http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/tyre-a...ml#post2563482). The results are sweet.

I'm going to the service station this weekend. I wonder what they are going to say. Admittedly, I don't have great talking skills. To the question "why did you change your tyres", my frank and instant response would be "your stock tyres are good for nothing" Any other way of diplomatically saying this and avoiding any warranty issues, which I'm sure they would raise?

Also, Akshay, I can think of a few more cases where I have doubts on warranty (as you might have guessed, these are on my shopping list )

- Bull bars. I'm talking about the IronMan and ARB types that add a minimum of 50kgs to the kerb weight.
- Suspension upgrade.
- As for lighting upgrade, I'd prefer to go with Xenons mounted on bull bars/roof racks, but again, these will add weight.
Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
go crazy the moment Jan of 2013 arrives!
I may be ignorant but what's on Jan of 2013?

PLEASE PLEASE tell me that tyre import restrictions will be lifted off though it's an awfully long time to wait.

Or is it your warranty getting expired then?

Note from the Team-BHP Support Team: Please use the "edit" button if posting within 30 minutes of the first post, instead of creating another back-to-back post.

Last edited by ssh1979 : 23rd November 2011 at 19:20.
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Old 28th November 2011, 11:08   #15
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^^ The warranty must be getting expired, don't get your hopes high

Big thanks for this post Akshay, I have so many small mods in mind, but Honda's attitude scares me to touch anything. Didn't upgrade to 195ers for the same reason, although my highway driving is amlost 90%. Now I want to get reverse parking camera installed, and can't figure out if I should believe the car accessory guys who say it won't void the warranty. Add the fact that the warranty is for 2+2 years, unlike Noopster I'll have to wait till 2015!

Guess it's time to have a nice informal chat with the service guy the next time I go to the dealership, let me see what all I can convince him for

Last edited by avisidhu : 28th November 2011 at 11:09. Reason: spell check
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