Arizona Attorney General

Mark Brnovich



Your Warranty Rights Under Federal Law

When purchasing a new vehicle, as a consumer you have certain rights under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.  The Act, which was passed by Congress in 1975, establishes requirements for entities that provide warranties, including automobile manufacturers.  Under the law, the warranty must be available to you before you make the purchase.

What is a warranty? 

A warranty is a promise by a manufacturer to stand behind its product or to repair certain defects over a set period of time. The warranty covers the costs associated with repairs or replacements specified in the agreement (or promise) during this period.

What are your rights under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act?

As a consumer, the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act provides you with the flexibility to choose your own mechanic or retail chain shop for auto repairs and maintenance.  In other words, you cannot be denied warranty coverage on your new vehicle just because you had maintenance or repairs done by someone other than the dealer.  However, the manufacturer or dealer may require consumers to use select repair facilities if the repair services are provided to consumers free of charge under the warranty. 

Similarly, you cannot be denied warranty coverage for using “aftermarket” or recycled parts unless the manufacturer or dealer requires specific parts that are provided free of charge under your warranty.  The manufacturer or dealer may also deny coverage if it can demonstrate that the use of your own mechanic or aftermarket parts caused the damage in a warranty claim.

When purchasing a new vehicle, what should you do to avoid warranty issues?

• Ask to read the warranty prior to finalizing your purchase.  If you have questions, ask the dealer for clarification.

• Be aware of the warranty period.  If issues arise, get them checked before your warranty expires.

• Keep up to date with service and follow the manufacturer’s recommended schedule.  A manufacturer may void a warranty for failure to service your vehicle.

• Keep all service records.  If you ever need to use your warranty, the dealer or manufacturer may request your maintenance records.

You can find more information on the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act at

If you believe your warranty claim has been unfairly denied, file a complaint with our office at