Performing periodic maintenance on your vehicle

Every car owner realizes how important it is to keep up with repairs and regular maintenance.

But a common misconception is that new car owners must continue to have their car serviced at the dealership or else their warranty coverage could be revoked. Not true. According to the Federal Trade Commission, it is illegal for car dealers to deny warranty claims for a car owner who decided to have routine car maintenance or repairs performed by someone else or to do it at home.

Routine maintenance can include:
•    Regular oil changes
•    Tire rotations
•    Replacement belts
•    New brake pads
•    Fluid checks and flushes
•    Inspections

As part of your warranty, a manufacturer agrees to fix any malfunctions or car problems during a set period of time. The warranty will cover certain repairs and replacement parts during this time.

As the vehicle owner, you may decide to have an independent mechanic, an auto repair shop or even perform routine car maintenance and repairs yourself to save money.  It is illegal for dealers or manufacturers to deny your warranty claims because someone else other than your dealer performed the work.

When can a dealer deny my warranty claim?
There can be certain situations in which a dealer could deny your warranty claim if you had someone else performed maintenance or repairs that caused damage. For example, if an independent mechanic replaced a belt that ended up damaging your engine. But the manufacturer or dealer must prove that the situation was the fault of the installer, rather than a defect in the product or vehicle, that caused the damage. The warranty would remain in effect for the rest of your vehicle.

To get the most out of your vehicle’s warranty, be sure to read your warranty and become informed about what it covers and when it expires. The warranty is often found with your owner’s manual. It’s always a good idea to keep all records of your car maintenance and repairs, regardless of who performs the work. Create a file for all records and receipts in case you have to use your warranty. If one day you need to file a claim and can’t prove you maintained your vehicle as recommended by the manufacturer, your warranty claim could be denied.

Escondido Auto Tech offers routine maintenance based on manufacturer’s service intervals without requiring vehicle owners to pay dealer prices. Services are often required at 30,000, 60,000 and 90,000 miles.

Escondido Auto Tech will send you car service reminders via email so you don’t miss a routine maintenance check.

To learn more about how Escondido Auto Tech can save you money on routine maintenance costs, visit eatauto.com or call 760-745-4454 for pricing information and to make an appointment.