Car warranties are a great thing to have under your belt as a vehicle owner. That only means, though, that knowing about what things can void your warranty is more important than ever. All car warranties are essentially a contract between you and the provider, after all. Like all contracts, each warranty is different in what you can and can’t do with them, and that’s why it’s so important you understand yours and find a contract that will fit your needs.
It’s highly likely that at least one of not all of these things is present in your vehicle warranty contract, so make sure you take notes both now and for future use.
Using Wrong Fluids
If you do any research on things that can void your car’s warranty, you’ll always find this one because of how much of an issue it is to vehicle owners. If you have a vehicle warranty, especially a warranty from the manufacturer of the vehicle, it’s extremely common to have to use the specified oil in the manual in your warranty terms.
Using the wrong oil opens up opportunities for all kinds of different issues with your engine. Whether it’s too little or too much lubricant or the wrong type of oil altogether, it’s an accident waiting to happen if you’re not sure what to use. If you do slip up, it’s likely you can damage your whole engine, and it is not a cheap job to fix. Since it’s your own negligence, or so they will argue, you’ll almost always be liable.
Keeping Poor Documentation
Another highly common warranty requirement that will void yours all together if you mess up comes from the required maintenance. Almost always, you’ll be contractually obligated to have regular services on your vehicle. It could be one annual full service, it could be a half service or even a combination of the two. Whatever it is, you need to do it, or your car’s warranty will be completely void, again, for negligence.
On top of just getting the required work done, though, it’s just as important to remember to back it up. Having the right documentation is great life advice in general, but especially when it comes to contractual obligations with a car warranty, being able to say you did, in fact, have the work done can go a really long way.
Having Work Done Outside of the Ts&Cs
On top of all of the other requirements we’ve just looked at with getting work done on your vehicle, there’s one other major factor that needs to be kept in mind, too. You also need to make sure you’re adhering to the required service providers when having work done. That goes for routine maintenance as well as anything else.
MOT’s, repairs and servicing alike, as well as anything else you should need, may all have to come from the same place. Even if it might cost you more money than it would to go elsewhere, if you go against this and still try to use your warranty, should anything go wrong, you might well be out of luck.
Just like modifications to your vehicle can invalidate your insurance, they can also very easily void your car’s warranty, too. It does, of course, depend on your particular car warranty contract as to what you can and can’t do, but in most cases, there are some very common no go areas that will land you in hot water. That doesn’t mean that you’re left on your own though.
Although modifications can fully void your warranty in many cases, they can also only partially void your warranty, too. If you fit an engine or powertrain related modification, for example, and something goes wrong with that particular system, even if it’s not the modification itself, your warranty will likely be invalid. Anything else, however, and you could well still be covered too. It really does all come down to the fine print, but some of the most common modifications that will not void your warranty include:
Just make sure they’re all legally acceptable, otherwise you may have a much more complicated situation on your hands for driving illegally.
If you don’t make any effort to look after your vehicle, it’s not uncommon to have your warranty voided in this way either. Some of the most simple things like keeping fluid topped up, cleaning the vehicle to the bare minimum, having all required maintenance, making any essential or problematic repairs, running the car regularly are all included in this umbrella category.
Failing to do any of them is a surefire sign to a warranty provider that you don’t look after the vehicle and makes it much more likely that you’re going to need more from your warranty. To help prevent that, these things are often the benchmark of looking after your car correctly. It’s not much to ask, and it makes sure your car lasts longer too.
Improper or illegal use of your vehicle is yet another easy way many people are caught out with their car warranty becoming void. Things like overloading the maximum weight or load capacities, towing, racing and even speeding all go against you if you need to reply on your warranty.
Although it may sound like common sense to read, it’s really easy to forget about some of these little things when you own a vehicle for a number of years. Before you make any decisions on how you use your vehicle, make sure that you’re permitted to do so first. It could save you a fortune.
Finally, mileage is the last thing we’ll look at that is more than capable of voiding your warranty. It’s just like insurance, really. Many warranties will have optional mileage limitations to bring down the cost of your warranty. That’s especially common with even the best-extended car warranties on the market.
It stands to reason that the more miles you’re going to be driving in your car, the more likely it is that your vehicle is going to need work, and sooner, too. It all stacks up against you with the legalities of protective measures, so always remember to keep an eye on the odometer and not push anything too far. If you do need to, make sure you discuss it with your warranty provider first.
All in all, car warranties of all shapes and sizes are there to protect you and your vehicle. It makes perfect sense that the lower value and more budget-friendly warranties out there are in place to make sure you’re getting only the cover you need but also will have technicalities that you need to be aware of too, all in the name of keeping things cheap.
The higher-end extend warranties and typically, manufacturers warranties too, are almost always more inclusive of coverage, but they may be a lot more strict on the requirements of quality servicing done woo. There may not be stipulations like mileage, but it’s highly likely you’ll need to have manufacturer-approved or accredited garages doing anything you need with your vehicle.
Whatever warranty you choose, always make sure you know what you’re up against. Warranted are there to help you, but are still a contract above all else.