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cat back exhaust voiding your warranty?

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Old 11-02-2009, 11:52 PM   #1
LucaBrasi916
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Default cat back exhaust voiding your warranty?

i was warned off by another member about getting a cat back exhaust because of my desire to live by the guidelines of my extended warranty....ive NEVER heard of a dealer denying a warranty claim because of anything done after the Cat. Anybody hear of this?
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Old 11-02-2009, 11:59 PM   #2
Wayne O
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IMO a cat-back exhaust is probably the one modification you can do without adversely affecting your warranty. This is an old quote from the Borla website (links not functional) asking whether an after market, cat-back exhaust will void one's warranty:

Q. Will it void my factory warranty?

NO. Some cars even have BORLA systems as the OEM exhaust. All of our street exhaust products are 50-state emissions legal. Our headers are 50-state legal and C.A.R.B. approved. In fact, it is illegal for a dealer to deny you the OE warranty because you have changed the exhaust system.

If your vehicle manufacturer fails to honor emission/warranty claims, contact EPA at (202) 260-2080 or www.epa.gov. If federal warranty protection is denied, contact the FTC at (202) 326-3128 or www.ftc.gov. For additional information, check out the following links:

Consumers Bill of Rights
What You Can Do If Your Warranty Is Denied
Federal Warranty Laws
Vehicle Manufacturer Warranty Contact Phone Numbers

Check with your local dealership to be sure but I've never heard of an after market, cat-back exhaust voiding a warranty. Long tube headers, however, are a completely different matter IMO.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:08 AM   #3
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that was my thought as well, ive done it to every car ive ever owned and never had an issue but had a member tell me to be careful, and read some threads on here saying dealers are looking for any reason to void your warranty including cat backs...i just dont want to give them any reason to stiff me on the GMPP.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:11 AM   #4
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Quality answer

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne O View Post
IMO a cat-back exhaust is probably the one modification you can do without adversely affecting your warranty. This is an old quote from the Borla website (links not functional) asking whether an after market, cat-back exhaust will void one's warranty:

Q. Will it void my factory warranty?

NO. Some cars even have BORLA systems as the OEM exhaust. All of our street exhaust products are 50-state emissions legal. Our headers are 50-state legal and C.A.R.B. approved. In fact, it is illegal for a dealer to deny you the OE warranty because you have changed the exhaust system.

If your vehicle manufacturer fails to honor emission/warranty claims, contact EPA at (202) 260-2080 or www.epa.gov. If federal warranty protection is denied, contact the FTC at (202) 326-3128 or www.ftc.gov. For additional information, check out the following links:

Consumers Bill of Rights
What You Can Do If Your Warranty Is Denied
Federal Warranty Laws
Vehicle Manufacturer Warranty Contact Phone Numbers

Check with your local dealership to be sure but I've never heard of an after market, cat-back exhaust voiding a warranty. Long tube headers, however, are a completely different matter IMO.
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Old 11-03-2009, 12:16 AM   #5
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As I just mentioned in another thread, An aftermarket part has to be directly related to the part of failure for the warrany to be denied.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnuso...s_Warranty_Act
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:36 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slorp train View Post
As I just mentioned in another thread, An aftermarket part has to be directly related to the part of failure for the warrany to be denied.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnuso...s_Warranty_Act
This is not true. A manufacturer can use any justification to deny your warranty.

What you're referring to is the legal limitations for when they may legally deny your warranty claim.

There is a big difference. If you modify your vehicle, the manufacturer can deny your warranty claim. They must provide justification. If you don't feel their justification is valid, you have every right to fight it iin court. By the time you're done paying lawyers to fight the manufacturers lawyers, you'll probably find it wasn't worth fighting... even if you did win.

In cases where the component obviously did not contribute to the failure, it is less likely the manufacturer will deny the warranty claim. But in several instances (many reported on this forum) where the modification may have contributed to the failure, GM will deny the warranty claim if the dealer submits it. GM has warned their dealers that cars with any non-GM engine tune will be denied engine (and drivetrain?) claims. GM can probably provide lots more evidence that a modification could have caused the failure than you'll ever be able to prove otherwise.

Just because you've read it on Wikipedia (or on SEMA's website) doesn't make it true in the real world.

In the case of a cat back mod, it's unlikely that the manufacturer would deny a warranty claim, as an exhaust being more or less restrictive is unlikely to create any failure - but if there was an engine failure, and they came back and said the more restrictive airflow of the exhaust created additional pressure on the whatzit, which created a second degree harmonic imbalance in the whozit, and they're denying the claim, it still becomes the owners burden to prove it's BS.

Last edited by WAwatchnut; 11-03-2009 at 03:43 AM.
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Old 11-03-2009, 04:04 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WAwatchnut View Post
This is not true. A manufacturer can use any justification to deny your warranty.

What you're referring to is the legal limitations for when they may legally deny your warranty claim.

There is a big difference. If you modify your vehicle, the manufacturer can deny your warranty claim. They must provide justification. If you don't feel their justification is valid, you have every right to fight it iin court. By the time you're done paying lawyers to fight the manufacturers lawyers, you'll probably find it wasn't worth fighting... even if you did win.

In cases where the component obviously did not contribute to the failure, it is less likely the manufacturer will deny the warranty claim. But in several instances (many reported on this forum) where the modification may have contributed to the failure, GM will deny the warranty claim if the dealer submits it. GM has warned their dealers that cars with any non-GM engine tune will be denied engine (and drivetrain?) claims. GM can probably provide lots more evidence that a modification could have caused the failure than you'll ever be able to prove otherwise.

Just because you've read it on Wikipedia (or on SEMA's website) doesn't make it true in the real world.

In the case of a cat back mod, it's unlikely that the manufacturer would deny a warranty claim, as an exhaust being more or less restrictive is unlikely to create any failure - but if there was an engine failure, and they came back and said the more restrictive airflow of the exhaust created additional pressure on the whatzit, which created a second degree harmonic imbalance in the whozit, and they're denying the claim, it still becomes the owners burden to prove it's BS.
Granted by the time you figure some cost to fight it, it may have been cheaper to pay for the initial repair. But at the end of the day if you have the money to throw at it chances are warranty will be issued. Now im not saying that you put a blower on you stock motor and burn a hole in the piston that your going to win that fight. But if you swap out your suspension then throw a rod, there not going to deny the claim because its been moddified. And even for that matter if you replace a component that serves the same function as the stock unit;i.e:CAI or an exhaust system and have some sort of internal engine problem. They would have to prove how the part you replaced caused the damage.
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Old 11-03-2009, 04:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slorp train View Post
They would have to prove how the part you replaced caused the damage.
The part that scares me is the expectation that GM has to prove anything. They would have to give justification to deny the claim, but that justification doesn't even have to be good. Ultimately, the owner has to prove that it didn't cause the problem, not GM.

For instances where there is obviously no relationship between the modifications and the failure, it's unlikely that a manufacturer would fight the warranty claim. Too much bad press, and too much exposure if the deny of claims is determed to be without grounds. But for any case where the manufacturer can draw a reasonable relationship, the owner should really be prepared to hear some bad news about warranty claims.

There are many instances on this forum of GM denying warranty claims where the owners (and many, many forum members) said "there's no way the mod caused the failure". Whether or not we think GM's justified in denying the claim, they can, and then it's up to us to spend the money to fight it, or pay for the repairs.
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