Does An UNDERHOOD or Direct-Transmission Mounted Air Compressor Void My Vehicle Warranty?

March 28, 2024

For those looking for a one-word answer, it’s no. UNDERHOOD® and Direct-Transmission Mounted air compressors do not void a vehicle manufacturer’s limited warranty on new trucks or vans.

Both Canada and the United States have laws protecting consumers’ warranties when using aftermarket parts and ensuring manufacturers stay true to their warranties. Air compressors that use PTO or engine-driven systems are considered aftermarket parts and are covered by these laws.

Warranty Protection in the United States

The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act is a federal law created in 1975 to protect consumers from companies that may not want to follow through with their warranties. The law embodies the attitude that you don’t need to have a warranty, but if you do, then you’d better make good on it.

Under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, the manufacturer’s dealer has the burden of proof to show that the aftermarket equipment caused the need for repairs before denying warranty coverage. In the context of UNDERHOOD air compressors, a truck manufacturer like Ford or GM must prove that the air compressor caused the vehicle or part to fail.

Here is what the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) says about aftermarket parts in their auto warranties explainer:

“An aftermarket part is a part made by a company that didn’t make your vehicle… If someone installs a defective aftermarket or recycled part, or doesn’t install a part correctly, it could damage a part that the warranty covers. If that happens, the manufacturer or dealer can deny warranty coverage for the damaged part and charge you for repairs. The manufacturer or dealer must prove the aftermarket or recycled part caused the damage before they can deny warranty coverage.”

VMAC Direct-Transmission Mounted and UNDERHOOD air compressors are built for specific trucks and applications, and that’s deliberate. VMAC engineers work with vehicle manufacturers before the release of their new trucks and vans to determine the optimal mounting locations of compressor components on any given vehicle.

If VMAC can’t find a reliable way to install an UNDERHOOD or Direct-Transmission Mounted air compressor that protects you and your warranty, they don’t offer the air compressor for that vehicle. It’s that simple.

Warranty Protection in Canada

It’s a common misconception that Canada has a blanket consumer protection law that’s similar to the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, but that doesn’t mean consumers have been hung out to dry. Individual provinces have created laws to help protect consumers and ensure warranties are enforced.

In addition, major manufacturers all have Canadian warranties that are similar to their U.S. counterparts. Vehicle manufacturers know that consumers purchase trucks and modify them into service vehicles and won’t risk losing business over unreasonable warranty restrictions.

Instead, manufacturers’ warranties essentially follow U.S. laws: aftermarket damage to a part may void the warranty on that specific part, but it doesn’t void the whole warranty. Here are a few examples of this in writing, straight from the manufacturers:

2025 Model F-650/F-750 Ford Trucks

“What is Not Covered Under this New Truck Limited Warranty?
Damage Caused by Accident, Misuse or Alteration
Examples of items not covered are:

    • Alterations, modifications or reconstruction of the vehicle, including the body, chassis, or any other component after the vehicle leaves the control of Ford of Canada
    • Non-Ford parts installed after the vehicle leaves Ford of Canada’s control and causes a Ford part to fail.

NOTE: Warranty coverage will be invalidated on parts affected by such damage.”

Canadian Limited Warranty and Owner Assistance Information

“The use of parts, control module calibrations, software modifications, and/or any other alterations not issued through General Motors will void the warranty coverage for those components that are damaged or otherwise affected by the installation of the non-GM part, control module calibration, software modifications, and/or other alteration.”

Ram Warranty Information
All Ra
m Trucks

“The warranties in this booklet do not cover repairs required because of non-FCA [Fiat Chrysler Automobiles] modifications, installation of special equipment or accessories, or use of special materials, fuels or additives. This includes special bodies, body conversions, fuel system conversions, trailer hitches, window tints, sunroofs, theft alarms, etc. Non-FCA modifications do not by themselves void your warranty, but they are not covered by your warranty.”

Each province and territory has consumer protection laws that ensure manufacturers follow these warranties and stay true to their word. Manufacturers who provide a warranty guarantee the products and services included, and they do so voluntarily. Warranties are not required! Therefore, a warranty is a written guarantee that obligates the manufacturer to follow through, even if you’ve installed an UNDERHOOD or Direct-Transmission Mounted air compressor.

Installing a VMAC air compressor? Register your warranty here.