FTC Staff Warns Companies on Warranty Coverage.
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    FTC Staff Warns Companies on Warranty Coverage.

    From time to time, it is stated that an owner of a product must use certain parts or service to not void a warranty.
    Here is a link to an FTC notice, that came out this week, that sets the record straight.

    https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/pres...ranty-coverage
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    So lets say you manage to find the worlds worst made in China oil filter for your new diesel truck, and it disintegrates and ruins your engine. FTC's got your back?
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    Nationwide car insurance got into hot water many, many yrs ago, for installing less than new replacement parts on cars in body shops. big stint over it. then they brought out the blue plan--and u could pick where u wanted ur vehicle fixed at then.

    i don't know who got after them, maybe the insurance regulation companybut somebody did back then.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff B View Post
    So lets say you manage to find the worlds worst made in China oil filter for your new diesel truck, and it disintegrates and ruins your engine. FTC's got your back?
    Well, no. If the filter "disintegrates" the engine failure would be a result of the filter failure, not a defect in material or workmanship of the engine builder. Now, if you utilized another aftermarket filter and the engine fails and the filter was not the cause, yes they'd have your back--eventually.
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    Think this is targeting some of those auto warranties that I see where they have a million mile warranty as long as you get the vehicle serviced at their dealer. This is just saying that you don't have to get it serviced there. You can do it yourself or at an independent shop as long as you keep the records you should be good.

    EDIT:

    The most interesting part of this was the section on the warranty stickers. No more warranty void if removed. Not that they really sopped my anyhow.
    Last edited by sennister; 04-17-2018 at 11:36 AM.
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    I'm impressed, short and to the point, and readable, I like it for a change.
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    Quote Originally Posted by martincom View Post
    Now, if you utilized another aftermarket filter and the engine fails and the filter was not the cause, yes they'd have your back--eventually.
    There lies the rub. My cynical mind goes into overdrive because I know how this generally will fall out. The manufacturer decides what is and what isnt a contributing part. Unless a person is willing to A hire an attorney schooled in such matters and B willing to continue feeding that beast until he or she gets what's rightfully theirs, I see no significant difference in how these will be handled. Corporate America has long learned the calculated risk system and they know all too well most people are unwilling and unable to afford a level playing field. It's a nice gesture but real world positive outcome for ground level consumers? Color me a skeptic.
    Last edited by Fozsey; 04-18-2018 at 07:45 AM.
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    I'm certainly not attempting to throw shade on the OP.

    I just feel that many modern pieces of equipment have genuinely been tested and developed to function reliably using components of known construction.
    When I produce parts for companies assembling machines or mobile equipment they require certifications of origin, metallurgy and documentation of quality. We need to send MSDS sheets for rust preventative oils or lubricants if the parts require them.

    Aftermarket companies make up their own mind about what materials or quality standards they wish to apply.
    Now I know some aftermarket companies try and differentiate themselves by attempting to produce a superior product. A man has to have some knowledge of the materials used, which nearly always is not public information in order to compare performance parameters.

    I think it is grossly unfair to expect an auto manufacturer to warranty their product even if an owner installs sub specification replacement parts and maintenance items.

    If they wish to do this then they should force aftermarket producers to prove that their parts perform to or beat the every one of the OEM's specifications. This action would likely eliminate the aftermarkets price advantage.

    I can't tell you how many youtube videos I have watched dudes open a dozen different oil filters to show many of them are constructed poorly.
    It is just so much easier for me to buy the OEM's parts and have at least some level of confidence that what you installed did not create a failure.

    I also know that Donaldson and others produce parts for OEM's, but I don't want to even get started with some ignorant service advisor telly me about how the "wrong" filter caused prospective damage. My Ford has a long warranty, and my Ford will wear Ford parts.
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    Amen, Jeff B

    When you think about the price difference between a bargain oil filter and an OEM filter, it is what, less than $5.00? If that? Is it really worth the risk of exposing yourself to all that hassle if something does awry?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff B View Post
    I'm certainly not attempting to throw shade on the OP.

    I just feel that many modern pieces of equipment have genuinely been tested and developed to function reliably using components of known construction.
    When I produce parts for companies assembling machines or mobile equipment they require certifications of origin, metallurgy and documentation of quality. We need to send MSDS sheets for rust preventative oils or lubricants if the parts require them.

    Aftermarket companies make up their own mind about what materials or quality standards they wish to apply.
    Now I know some aftermarket companies try and differentiate themselves by attempting to produce a superior product. A man has to have some knowledge of the materials used, which nearly always is not public information in order to compare performance parameters.

    I think it is grossly unfair to expect an auto manufacturer to warranty their product even if an owner installs sub specification replacement parts and maintenance items.

    If they wish to do this then they should force aftermarket producers to prove that their parts perform to or beat the every one of the OEM's specifications. This action would likely eliminate the aftermarkets price advantage.

    I can't tell you how many youtube videos I have watched dudes open a dozen different oil filters to show many of them are constructed poorly.
    It is just so much easier for me to buy the OEM's parts and have at least some level of confidence that what you installed did not create a failure.

    I also know that Donaldson and others produce parts for OEM's, but I don't want to even get started with some ignorant service advisor telly me about how the "wrong" filter caused prospective damage. My Ford has a long warranty, and my Ford will wear Ford parts.
    While I agree in general principle, it is going to be a tough battle. As you pointed out there are all kinds of videos out there where people cut open oil filters and compare it to others. Some are completely junk and sometimes the OEMs are barely better. It isn't like Ford, GM, Dodge or any other manufacturer is going to put a $100 oil filter in a vehicle.

    I agree that things are tested and developed to perform to a standard but they also factor in cost. If not every vehicle on the road would cost $200,000 to buy new and simple oil changes would be $1000. Yeah, making up numbers but the point is that affordability is factored in. If you are driving a Ferrari or Lamborghini a $1000 for a basic 3000 mile (or whatever the interval is for an oil change) service can be expected. On a F150 or a Silverado, the customer will flip out. So on a part that is going to be considered a maintenance item, like brakes, filters, fluids and such the factor in cost vs expected lifespan.

    They also will factor in warranty period and expected life. Oil and oil filters are always one of those things that everyone has an opinion on. Lets pick something else. How about a water pump. That is something that is pretty common to replace, is widely available on the aftermarket and could be considered a wear item. Lets say you have a vehicle with a timing belt and you are replacing the timing belt every 100K miles. Some are done earlier than that and some later. Depends on the vehicle. Typically on most vehicles I have owned and worked on, at around 100K I am going to do a timing belt. Typically on these vehicles, part of that "service interval" includes replacing other components as long as you are in that deep. Many times those items are things like water pumps, belt tensioners, accessory belts. For some of these, they may be still serviceable but you either had to remove them to get to the timing belt or it is so easy to do that you might as well replace it because you might not get to 200K miles before the original fails anyhow. A manufacturer knows that the water pump replacement is part of the timing belt service since they specified what should be replaced. When they are designing said water pump, should they add to their design consideration that it should last 500,000 miles? That will drive up the cost of that part and the majority of the vehicles would never see that many miles. Or they can reduce the cost and make one that lasts 120K miles. That in turn makes the vehicle production cost lower. There are typically a lot of options for aftermarket on this. The OEM might last 120K miles but so does an aftermarket. Maybe an aftermarket part is readily available at your local parts store but the dealer to get an OEM is 60 miles away and they don't have any. Sure now you can order off the internet but availability is a factor. Maybe there is a manufacturer design defect that is corrected in the aftermarket world. Everyone makes mistakes, even OEMs. There are times that this is why the aftermarket part was created, to fix a design defect that the manufacturer refuses to address as they don't see it as a "problem".

    There are things that I replace with OEM parts and there simply are things that I do not. That kind of gets into where I have seen the Magnuson Act which is referred to in this article. More typically where this comes into effect is when you have a warranty claim that is denied because you have made modifications to the vehicle. It more typically comes up in discussions around someone that has or is considering applying a tune/chip to increase performance and are concerned about the warranty being voided. A modification like this can void your warranty but the Magnuson Act protects the consumer in certain ways. For instance lets say you tune a car and the left driver's door speaker fails. Will the fact that you have modified the vehicle in a way for performance impact your general warranty on the vehicle? No. They cannot deny the warranty. Now lets say the same speaker had failed but rather than install a chip, you installed an aftermarket stereo, amp and sub. Well now we are getting into an area where someone could reasonably say that your modifications may have contributed to the failure of the part. You were no longer using the part within the design specifications. Same example with the only modification being the stereo and even though they denied the warranty claim on the speaker they can't deny a later claim when the transmission goes out. Hard to prove that the stereo had anything to do with the transmission. Now if you chipped it that might be a different answer because the two could be linked.

    Where this gets tough is where do you draw the line. So you say you only use OEM parts and that is fine. Should someone have their warranty voided if they use Bosch wiper blades instead of OEM? Lets say it is a case of using an aftermarket water pump. Well if I replaced it as preventative maintenance at 100K miles and it goes out at 5K miles later Why would I go to the dealer for a warranty repair? The aftermarket part probably has a warranty though so I would go that route. If the water pump went out on a one year old vehicle with 10K miles, why would I have fixed it myself? It would have gone to the dealer for repair and I would assume they would use an OEM part. That is where I don't see this being as big of a deal as it sounds. Oil filters always creates a big debate and I get that there are some out there that are little more than a coffee filter stuffed in a metal can. Should your warranty be voided if you didn't use the OEM one? Well what was the failure? Did the oil filter explode and the engine seize up because you drove it with no oil? Well then maybe you are on the hook. Amsoil filters are highly rated and probably are better than OEM. They also cost more so it isn't like you are using it for a cheap alternative. So then do you say well you can use aftermarket filters as long as they cost more than OEM. Well then what happens if they charge $30 for OEM but they jack up the price on that coffee filter in a can to where it costs $40.

    What if the car was hit in a parking lot and it broke the bumper. An aftermarket one is used rather than OEM and the alternator goes out. Should they void the warranty? That is where this debate can go on and on.

    I get your point of view but it isn't always that simple.
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