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Can I Service My Own Car And Keep The Warranty?

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In this article we’re going to look into whether you can service your own car and still keep the warranty.

Then we’re going to tackle some of the surrounding questions such as “What happens if I don’t service my car?”, “Will doing your own oil changes void the warranty?”, and lastly, “What will void the warranty on a car?”.

And without further ado, let’s get straight to it.

Can I Service My Own Car And Keep The Warranty?

Many people ask the question “Do you need to service your car at the dealership to keep your warranty valid?”. And we certainly get why you would ask the question.

The dealership may be out of your way to get to, or you might be able to get it serviced elsewhere for a far more affordable rate.

Of course the dealership would prefer if you went to them every time, but that’s because it means more money for them and keeps everything in house.

But fortunately, the answer to this question is No. In fact, it’s illegal for a dealership to make you have your car serviced there just to keep the new car warranty valid.

And this means that whenever you need tire rotations or oil changes, or any other general maintenance carried out, you can go anywhere you like to get it done and the dealership will still be obliged to honor the new car warranty.

Can I Service My Own Car And Keep The Warranty


But before you rush out to get the car serviced elsewhere, please heed this warning. You will need proof that a service has been carried out. The dealership is allowed to void the new car warranty if they have no record of the proper maintenance being carried out.

But this is very simple and straightforward to deal with. All you have to do is keep any receipts or other documentation every time you have maintenance done on the car. And this goes for oil changes, tire rotations, or anything else that might crop up.

Our advice is to keep all the receipts for the dealership, and to photocopy a spare set  for your own records.

What happens if I don’t service my car?

Unlike an MOT check, technically speaking, an annual service is not a legal requirement. And, strangely enough, it’s also not even a prerequisite for your car insurance.

However, we would strongly recommend that you do get your car serviced at least once a year in order to keep your vehicle in good working order.

If you don’t carry out any basic routine maintenance, then you risk greater wear and tear on the car, and it’s performance will deteriorate. 

And this means that in the long run, you’re much more likely to find yourself with all kinds of high cost repair bills.

Not to mention the danger caused by running a car when it’s not 100% road worthy.

All of which could have been avoided just by carrying out a service and getting things checked over once in a while. This way you can ensure that your car is in the best possible condition. 

Car services are usually scheduled to be carried out on an annual basis, however we recommend that you check that against your car’s user manual, as this may tell you how much mileage you’re allowed between oil checks.

Will doing your own oil changes void warranty?

In order not to void your new-car warranty, your dealership will require proof that you have been doing the proper maintenance on the vehicle. 

But of course if you were to do the oil changes yourself, there’s no receipt, which means no proof. And then the dealership will be completely in it’s rights to void your new-car warranty.

So by far your best option is to get your oil changes done by a professional in the business and ask for a receipt. Besides, it usually only costs about $20.

And this also goes for any other maintenance you have done on the car, even something as simple as having the tires turned around.

Our advice is to keep all of your car service and maintenance receipts as evidence that not only has everything been done correctly, but it’s also been done expertly by a professional.

You can keep the original hard copies of the receipts or other documents perhaps in the car, in the glove compartment. And you can also make further copies and/or take photos of the receipts on your phone.

What will void the warranty on a car?

There are many different things that can void the warranty on your car. But some are more readily expected and accepted than others. Let’s start with the more obvious ones.

If your car was in a severe accident and was declared a total loss, or given a salvage title this will of course void the warranty.

Damage caused by an environmental disaster, such as a fire, a flood or an earthquake, this will void the warranty.

If you disconnect, tamper with or replace the odometer which tracks the vehicle’s mileage, this is usually grounds to void the warranty. Using the wrong fuel will also void the warranty.

Certain, but not all modifications you make to the car can void its warranty.

Misuse of the vehicle can void its warranty. This can include for example taking it off-road if it’s not designed for that.

But the least obvious element to cause a warranty to be voided is neglect. If you fail to take your vehicle in for service for its scheduled maintenance, the warranty is void and the dealership is not responsible for repairing any damage to the engine.

This is of course just a quick rundown of what can usually void a new car warranty. However for a more in depth and specific breakdown, you could always go ahead and read the warranty documentation. Especially if you need any clarification as to whether or not you can take your car off the road.

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