Sayle Oil News

Does your vehicle’s manufacturer warranty require that you use a specific brand of oil?

All of us have heard the phrase “If you don’t use your vehicle manufacture’s approved product or service, you will void your warranty.” But is this true? Do you, as an automobile owner, have to purchase your parts and service from the original manufacturer or use their designated oil or oil change service?

The answer in short is NO. To dive more into this answer, we will need to look at the Magnuson-Moss Act.

What is the Magnuson-Moss Act?
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, passed in 1975, is a federal law that governs warranties on consumer products. The Act’s purpose is to help consumers understand their products’ warranties and to make these warranties enforceable.

In essence, this statute was created to protect consumers from deceptive warranty practices and provide clarity regarding warranties on consumer products. While all consumer products are not required to have warranties, if one is given, it must comply with the Magnuson-Moss Act.

Why is the Magnuson-Moss Act important to me?
One of the most important portions of the Magnuson-Moss Act for consumers is the prohibited use of “Tie-In Sales” provisions. A tie-in provision requires a purchaser of a warrantied product to buy a particular item or service from a specified company to use with the warrantied product in order to be eligible to receive the benefits of the warranty.

For Example:
In order to keep your new X Brand Lawnmower warranty in effect, you must use genuine X Brand Lawnmower Blades. Failure to have scheduled maintenance performed, at your expense, by the Y Maintenance Company, Inc., voids this warranty.

The above example shows contract language prohibited by the Magnuson-Moss Act. The only legal way to require this is to make the product or service free of charge to the consumer.

Magnuson-Moss Act and Your Oil Change
Therefore, an automobile warranty requiring its consumers to only purchase a specific oil change and oil filter at a specific location would then be deemed illegal. This means you can use any brand of oil and oil filter and still retain your vehicle’s manufacturer warranty.

It is important to point out that some manufacturers do require a specialty type of motor oil like GM. GM requires the use of a Dexos-approved oil. Most oil brands now carry specialty oils based on those recommendations. You can purchase most specialty oils at any oil change facility or retail location.

At all Sayle Oil-owned quick lubes, we use Shell products including Pennzoil and Quaker State that meet current OEM recommendations for all vehicles. These recommendations ensure your vehicle runs at the best performance.

This means you can choose a better product and save money while keeping your vehicle’s manufacturer warranty intact.