Do you have to take your new car to the dealer for service?

It's a Myth that Only New Car Dealers Can Service Vehicles Under Warranty

"It’s a common misconception that only car dealers can perform the maintenance services on a newer vehicle that is under warranty,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. “Clearly, consumers can have maintenance services done by their local independent service shop without affecting your warranty, even though dealers and manufacturers often suggest the opposite.”

According to the council, consumers are protected by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act and the general principles of the Federal Trade Commission, which prohibit a manufacturer from voiding the vehicle warranty because service was done by a non-dealer.

Specifically, the language states, “No warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer's using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade or corporate name; except that the prohibition of this subsection may be waived by the commission if - (1) the warrantor satisfies the commission that the warranted product will function properly only if the article or service so identified is used in connection with the warranted product, and (2) the commission finds that such a waiver is in the public interest.

When using a non-dealer, independent repair shop to maintain your vehicle, keep all records and receipts for maintenance that is done to the vehicle and adhere to scheduled maintenance requirements. If a warranty claim arises, these records will provide proof that maintenance has been done in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations and requirements.

If you develop a power train problem (engine, transmission, differentials) the dealer may deny the warranty if you don't have those records of services done on schedule. It has even been known for a dealer to deny warranty on some engine claims if the oil filter is an aftermarket.


Wayne's Garage
Serving Eugene and Springfield, Oregon
333 Q Street in Springfield