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After Market Installation and Trade-in Value

I want to know if adding an after market remote car starter can affect the value of my trade in. I have just been denied repairs that would normally be under warranty because I had a remote car starter installed in my vehicle and the dealer is telling me that the problem was a result of this installation. I want to get rid of the vehicle now because the dealer is telling me any other related issues won’t be covered. I’m wondering if I’ll have trouble now trading this vehicle in.

And what exactly was/is the problem? Has it been corrected?

The remote starter itself will not affect the value of your car one way or the other. However, you imply that other repairs are needed and cannot be made (under warranty). These are the problems that will affect the price.

Consult with your dealer or his service manager about a solution. You will have to pay for the work. They may insist on first removing the removing starter. If you can’t come to terms with the dealership, try an independent mechanic.

IF the installation was done poorly, and voided the warranty, then the value of the car is greatly diminished. I would not consider buying a car with a voided warranty. Expired warranty, yes. Voided, no.

The problem was loose tension in the ETC fuse in the fuse block. The dealership mechanic fixed it with a temporary fix, but said he should not even have done that (it was a favor). He said to completely correct the problem, I will have to change the fuse block which will cost me $7-800 (his quote) and will not be covered under my warranty because of the after market installation of my car starter. He says that any other repairs (that can in anyway be connected to my car starter) will be denied under warranty. I want to get rid of the vehicle, but am worried that no one will give me a good trade-in value because of this. I plan to trade it in before the warranty expires.

What constitutes a voided warranty? From what I understand my warranty is partially voided since the dealership mechanic says he will not repair anything that he can connect to this remote car starter installation. I don’t think the car starter installation was done poorly. It was done a year ago and I’ve never had any issues. One of the fuses was loose and the dealership mechanic found tiny scratches in that area (really hard to see) so is blaming the loose fuse on the remote car starter installer.

If the damage was caused by the installation of an aftermarket remote starter, shouldn’t the damage be covered under a warranty by the installer? Why aren’t they involved in correcting this issue?

It sounds like they will void the portion of the warrantee that covers electrical problems. Electrical problems can be very expensive to diagnose and, as you just found out, can be expensive to fix. Today’s cars are large, moving computers. If I were looking at your car, and found out the factory warranty was voided because of electrical issues, I’d run from this thing.

To my knowledge, I have no warranty from the outfit that installed the remote car starter. I brought them the vehicle and explained what the dealer told me, and they claim they had nothing to do with the problem. They say the fix by the dealer is permanent, and there will be no problems with the fuse again.

Everything that you purchase has an implied Warranty of Merchantibility.

Essentially, this means that the merchandise (in this case, the Remote Starter) is fit for the purpose that is claimed for it, and by extension, that it will not be harmful. On the basis of this implied warranty, the ham-handed installer IS responsible for any problems caused by his work.

However, you will undoubtedly have to pursue this in Small Claims Court, as he will likely not own up to his bad work. If you go to Small Claims Court (where you represent yourself), be sure to bring a notarized letter from the dealership stating the nature of the problem caused by the installer’s work.

You should be able to recover the cost of installing a new fuse block to replace the one damaged by the installer. Most merchants who are sued in Small Claims Court do not even show up, which automatically gives you a victory by default.

Just drive the car for a while and see if you have any electrical problems. As time passes, your concerns may fade away, too. Consider this a lesson: don’t modify the car before the warranty has expired.

I would avoid any car with a remote starter, especially if it was an after market model. But then I just would never use one.

Don’t see the dealer for this kind of thing, I suggest trying to find an independent shop that does installs and ask them to check it out. The dealer likely has no idea and is going to just keep on guessing until they get lucky or you run out of money.

Did the remote starter installer use a “piggyback” connector to access power from the fuse box? these will damage the fuse box exactly how you describe,loss of tension,everyone knows (maybe not everyone it seems) not to use this technique,it is fast but is very sloppy work,just a thought are you the installer? (I did read your post) why are you not presenting this situation to the installation shop?

I have no idea what was done. I certainly didn’t install it myself. If I had any clue about these things, I could figure out who’s lying here–the dealer or the installer. I DID take it back to the installer (Yipes Stripes) and he claims he did nothing wrong. He says the dealer is just trying to get out of paying for any repairs.

Thank you. I have definitely learned my lesson. I had no idea, but I suppose I should have. The problem is that I want to trade this truck and I don’t know if I will have trouble doing so now. I want to trade it for reasons other than these current problems. I had planned to do so previously before all of this happened.

Thank you. That’s very helpful information. Unfortunately, I’m not sure I really want the fuse block changed. I would go after the installer, but the truck is running fine and it seems ridiculous to insist on a new fuse block when there are no issues. My main concern is how this will affect a trade in. I have been planning to trade this vehicle for awhile.

For a trade-in to a dealer, they may not care so much. For a private sale, I suspect it would be an issue to a lot of people. I know I’d never consider buying a car with an aftermarket starter or security system or anything like that.

If you trade now, you can’t say that there are o problems with the truck. If you wait a few months and there are no additional problems, then you should assume that the dealer was incorrect. Wait until spring.