(NAPSI)—True or false: Until your vehicle is out of warranty, it must be serviced by the new-car dealer or the factory warranty will be void. Although many people would have answered "true," the correct answer is "false," according to the Car Care Council.
By law, independent repair shops can also provide services to maintain your new-car warranty. Consumers are protected by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which prohibits a manufacturer from voiding the vehicle warranty because service was done by a nondealer.
According to the FTC, "It's illegal for a dealer to deny your warranty coverage simply because you had routine maintenance or repairs performed by someone else. Routine maintenance often includes oil changes, tire rotations, belt replacement, fluid checks and flushes, new brake pads and inspections." It's also important to note that the "Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act makes it illegal for companies to void your warranty or deny coverage under the warranty simply because you used an aftermarket or recycled part."
When using a nondealer, independent aftermarket shop to maintain your vehicle, the council strongly recommends you keep records and receipts for all maintenance done to the vehicle and adhere to scheduled maintenance requirements. If a warranty claim arises, these records will provide proof that maintenance has been performed in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations and requirements.
"It's a common misconception that only car dealers can perform the routine maintenance and repairs on a newer vehicle that is under warranty," said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. "The truth is that consumers can have routine repairs performed by their local independent repair shop or do the work themselves without affecting the warranty."
The nonprofit Car Care Council is the source of information for the "Be Car Care Aware" consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers.
For information from the FTC about auto warranties and routine maintenance, visit www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0138-auto-warranties-routine-maintenance. For a copy of the council's "Car Care Guide" or for further facts, visit www.carcare.org.
On the Net:North American Precis Syndicate, Inc.(NAPSI)