Off-roading is one of the best things that anyone can do outdoors, but it requires a specialized vehicle to do so. If you do not already own a capable off-roading vehicle, you will need to buy one, but many prospective off-roaders are concerned that going off-road with a new vehicle will void the warranty.
Off-roading does not void a warranty. Modifications and dangerous off-roading driving may void a warranty. The warranty will cover any component failure that would normally occur, but any off-road-related damage is not likely to be covered by a vehicle warranty, even if it is built for off-roading.
The warranty on a new vehicle can be voided by misusing the vehicle, applying certain modifications to the vehicle, and by damage caused to the vehicle that could be considered negligent or intentional. Let’s learn more about off-road vehicle warranties to find out what may void the warranty.
Does Off-roading Void A New Vehicle Warranty?
Off-roading is fun and exhilarating, but it can also be dangerous, and it may cause damage to vehicles, even on the simplest off-road trails. Every new 4×4 comes with a warranty, but even though the vehicle is designed for off-roading, these warranties can be voided by certain off-road-related situations.
Off-roading itself does not void a warranty, but modifications done for off-roading purposes, negligence, vehicle misuse, and damage deemed intentional may void an off-road vehicles’ warranty.
Even if the off-roading that you do does not void the warranty, if any damage does occur off-road, the warranty may not cover the repairs.
At the end of it, a vehicle warranty is designed to protect the customer from factory and manufacturing defects within the vehicle, not against damage caused by the driver.
If you take your 4×4 out on the trail and an engine component breaks or malfunctions through no fault of yours, then the warranty is likely to cover the repair.
However, if your vehicle is damaged due to the off-roading that you are doing or the way you are driving, even if it does not void the warranty, the warranty is not likely to cover the cost of the necessary repairs.
This means that taking your new vehicle off-road is not the thing that will void the warranty in most situations, but if you are driving off-road, do not expect the warranty to cover all damage, and be ready for certain sections of the warranty to be voided by the act of off-roading.
What Modifications Void A Warranty?
Driving an off-road vehicle on an off-road trail is not likely to void a warranty, but performing some modifications to the vehicle may do. Upgrading a vehicle to be better for off-roading is not always covered by the warranty because the warranty applies to the parts of the vehicle as they are when the vehicle is sold.
Upgrading or modifying any components of a vehicle is likely to void a warranty or case the warranty to not cover component failure that may result from the modifications.
For example, modifications to the vehicles’ wheels, suspension, intakes, and engine chip are likely to void a warranty. These upgrades and modifications are common in the world of off-roading as they may offer better trail performance.
However, upgrading the wheels of the vehicle may apply extra pressure and load to the suspension, resulting in a warranty void. The same is true for lift kit modifications and upgrades.
Altering the intakes on the vehicle or installing a new chip may void the warranty as well, particularly if the mods are done outside of the dealership.
To avoid warranty issues when making modifications, always have the modifications done by the dealership where you bought the vehicle and have them applied to the warranty. Performing modifications in this way will always be covered by the manufacturer and dealership warranty.
Is Off-Roading Bad For Your Car?
Off-roading can be dangerous for people and vehicles, especially if it is not done well or in a safe manner. Off-roading can be very bad for your car if you are not careful.
Common off-roading damage includes wheel misalignment, tire damage, transmission issues – these can be caused by poor driving skills or unnecessary load on the transmission system, undercarriage damage, body damage, wiring faults, broken fuses, and damaged tubing.
All of these issues are common among off-roaders, and all of them are typically caused by the act of off-roading itself.
This means that even if your off-road vehicle has a warranty if you participate in serious off-roading, be ready to repair many off-roading-related issues yourself, as the warranty is unlikely to cover most of them.
However, most of these issues are somewhat minor and simple to repair, and many of them can be avoided with careful driving and good off-roading skills.
Take the time to understand your vehicle and how to drive well off-road to help avoid any unnecessary damage and vehicle issues.
Do Warranties Cover Off-Roading Damage?
Warranties are useful things, and almost all new vehicles come with one, but they do not cover everything that may happen to a vehicle.
A new vehicle warranty is unlikely to cover damage caused by off-roading. If a vehicle sustains some form of damage that is a direct result of odd-roading or the way the driver is driving, this is considered negligence or vehicle misuse and is not covered under the vehicle warranty.
If component failure occurs that would otherwise be covered by the warranty under normal circumstances, some dealerships may claim that the damage was increased or happened sooner than it should have due to off-roading activity and void the warranty on that component.
At the end of it all, no warranty is sure to cover off-roading damage, and many dealerships will try to find a way out of covering off-road-related damage, so be prepared to repair the damage yourself.
Off-roading does not automatically void a warranty unless otherwise stipulated by the warranty agreement. Where things become troublesome is if the vehicle is damaged in a way that would not have occurred from driving on normal roads.
If your vehicle is designed for off-roading, it is unlikely to sustain much damage on normal off-roading trips anyway but be sure to make any modifications through your dealership, drive carefully on the trails, and try not put the vehicle in any unnecessary danger for the sake of keeping the warranty intact.