We had a Car Pro Show caller last Saturday who had a serious problem with a Kia. He purchased it pre-owned, but it was factory certified so had warranty up to 100,000 miles. At about 42,000 miles, the engine seized and stopped running. The dealership tore into the engine and found it completely sludged up. When the dealer called the factory for authorization to repair the engine, it was denied.
The caller said he had the documentation to prove he changed the oil as he was supposed to, but Kia said the wrong oil was used. This one is going to end up in court, but most likely that could have been avoided with proper maintenance records and closer attention to factory specifications.
Automakers will deny coverage of any repair if it appears neglect or abuse are factors. In cases like this, the owner of the car must prove they performed all the prescribed services. If that cannot be proven in detail, the warranty claim can be denied. In the case of our caller, the dealer did all they could do to help, but to no avail.
Step one is to know what you are required to do.
Next, choose electronic or manual logs.
History tells us that engine sludge is generally caused by a lack of oil changes or improper oil. Automakers know this too, and that is the first thing they look for when there is a catastrophic failure, especially in a low mileage vehicle. They don�t really want to turn down a claim, they know it will most likely cost them a customer. On the other hand, they don�t want to pay a dealer to replace an engine because the owner did not do what was required.
Keep records like you are going to have to present the evidence in court, you may well have to.
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