Independent Mechanic Or Dealer - Warranties


#1

Hi,
I have a 2015 CPO Civic. I bought the car recently and it is just due for its first service.
I’m trying to decide the best option for regular maintenance - When I need to go to a dealer vs independent mechanic and how it interacts with warranty issues. a couple questions:

I have heard sometimes car makes will invalidate warranty if you use an independent mechanic even if records are kept. Is this something to be truly worried about? I have a long relationship with a trusted mechanic that is a bit out of the way, but if there were serious issues of any sort I would trust him over anyone to tell me what is wrong.

are independent mechanics able to make warranty claims or is that only through a dealership?

Is it ok to have basic maintenance done pretty much anywhere - thoughts on places like jiffy Lube? the car is just due for an A1 maintenance, which I gather is just an oil change and tire rotation


#2

A warranty claim in only made through the Honda dealer.

They can refuse a warranty if the problem is related to something the independent guy did or did not do.

Say he forgets to tighten the oil drain plug and it falls out leading to destruction of the engine. You have no recourse with Honda Motor Company. Your only recourse is against the independent guy who botched the service.


#3

Please stay away from the Jiffy Boob places. A quick search here will show dozens and dozens and dozens of people who have destroyed engines because these places forgot to add oil, botched the filter change, drain plug or stripped the drain. The folks that work there are not mechanics.

Take it to the dealer or indie mechanic for oil changes. It helps them keep the lights on and lets them have a look at other things to be addressed.


#4

I used to go to a Jiffy Lube near me. I let them change oil, and they did a good job. My old car used mineral oil, but my new one requires synthetic oil. JL wanted about $90 instead of the usual $40 just because I needed synthetic. I called my usual mechanic for an oil change, and they charged a little over $60 for full synthetic. Not only did I get more experienced mechanics at the indie shop, it was,much less expensive.


#5

Unless the independent mechanic mucks something up or the manufacturer provides service for free (not positive about the latter), it is against the law in the United States to void the warranty for not going to the dealer.


#6

The key part of that sentence is “unless the independent mechanic mucks something up”.

It doesn’t matter who changed the oil if you come to the dealer 5000 miles after the oil change with no oil and a damaged engine. You have a duty to check your oil. My owners manual says about once a month . Since my car burns no noticeable oil, that seems about right.


#7

I usually go to an independant mechanic after the manufacturer basic warranty is over. Oil changes are done by me most of the time.


#8

Always check the Honda dealers’s (Plural) prices on routine services. Check their websites for coupons. I have had around 20 Hondas and Acuras. I use a dealership because of prices and good quick service. I get a good price and a free car wash.
I would not use Iffy Lube for my lawnmower.


#9

Ben_T_Spanner,
Similar to my Kia dealership. When I purchased my Forte in 2010 they had no service department. Scheduled maintenance and warranty claims could be made at the dealership conglomerate Mazda dealer. I had Kia’s scheduled maintenance performed at a trusted regional automotive service provider. My final service with them was at a local but first time at another location. I requested an oil and filter change. I was confused when asked when that was last performed. I said it’s on your computer. The very young man replied: we are a different franchise and do not have computer access to that. Years before I had their service done 400 miles away and several times local. They always had my service information on the computer. Odd… The service was completed as usual and I paid for it. The young man (salesman) tried to sell many magic potions which I of course declined (as usual). He recommended an engine flush at 26,000 miles! He then gave me a printout of Kia recommended maintenance that was “overdue” stressing the transmission drain and fill every 12 months!!! I reminded him My transmission was a manual. He replied “That is for the manual”. I tossed the BS paper on the passenger seat and left. At home I checked the “overdue” Kia maintenance with my owner manual. Total BS. The 12 month drain and fill of manual transmission was actually Automatic Transmission/Transaxle shift linkage. Inspect every 12 months and lubricate if necessary. Very different from drain and fill manual transmission every 12 months for $129.95!!! I contacted headquarters and was informed they were aware of the rogue franchisee and were dealing with it. They offered to reimburse me for BS charges. I informed them my oil and filter change was completed and I was charged the proper amount ($40). I drove by the location about a month later and it was an empty building. As the Romans advised: Caveat Emptor (buyer beware). Before my next service was due Kia opened a new dealership with a very good service department. Oil and filter change with car wash $30.