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Will An Aftermarket Downpipe Void My Warranty?

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Downpipes & Warranty

In the world of car enthusiasts and tuners, an aftermarket downpipe is a common addition to boost your car’s power, improve its sound, and just make the ride a little more thrilling.

As an enthusiast owner, you may enjoy these enhancements, but also worry if this modification will render your car’s warranty null and void.

This is indeed a valid concern, but the answer isn’t always straightforward and will depend on a few factors which we’ll go over.

What is an Aftermarket Downpipe?

Before we delve into the warranty discussion, let’s get a basic understanding of what an aftermarket downpipe is. A downpipe forms part of the exhaust system, connected to the turbocharger. Its role is to guide the exhaust gases away from the turbo down to the exhaust pipe.

An aftermarket downpipe is typically wider than its stock equivalent, facilitating a larger volume of gas to flow away from the turbocharger, reducing back pressure and, in turn, boosting performance.

While it’s true that from the outside it isn’t as obvious a modification as aftermarket wheel or even an aftermarket muffler/cat-back – it’s still important that you know it’s effects on the car’s warranty.

The last thing you want is a warranty claim being rejected!

Your Location

Depending on where you live there will be different laws and regulations surrounding warranty claims and whether or not modifications will affect the warranty.

For example, in the US, there is the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. With this, the burden is on the vehicle manufacturer to prove that the modification directly caused something to fail.

But…there is a catch.

The protection offered by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act comes with a caveat: If a warranty claim arises and your aftermarket downpipe can be demonstrated to have caused the problem or damage, the repair might not be covered under the warranty.

For example, if you have issues with your brakes and you have an aftermarket downpipe, it won’t affect your warranty coverage. However, if you are having exhaust or engine-related problems that are a direct result of the downpipe installation, these could potentially be denied as part of your warranty coverage.

Many other locations like the UK often adopt a similar approach.

Ensure that you choose a high quality downpipe and get professional installation to minimise the chances of it causing issues for you.

Check The Terms!

Despite the blanket protection offered by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act from having warranties voided purely due to the addition of aftermarket parts, it’s extremely crucial to pay due diligence to the specifics of your warranty contract.

Certain automakers and dealerships may exclude certain modifications from the warranty agreement which can make your life difficult if the car is in for a repair under warranty with those mods installed.

The terms may also imply that they won’t cover the car if any modifications are made that make the car unroadworthy or not road legal. As such, if upgrading your downpipe, opt for catted one.

The Verdict

So…does an aftermarket downpipe void your warranty?

Not directly.

However, if an aftermarket downpipe is deemed to have directly caused the damage, then that specific repair might not be covered under the warranty.

This is true for most places and most warranty terms, however when in doubt it’s always a good idea to give your dealership a ring just to double check and ensure there aren’t any clauses that would prevent you installing an aftermarket downpipe.

Ideally, get this in writing from them should they decide to change their mind if you make a claim under warranty.

Happy modding!