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      02-15-2013, 10:45 AM   #1
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Engine Malfunction ! Dealer Blames aftermarket Alarm/radar

I am shocked that it comes to this...

a 90day old e93 M3.

I had aftermarket Alarm and Radar protection installed from a Professional Location.

All fine about 3 weeks later (2 days ago) my Engine showed a Engine Malfunction Message. Went to the Dealer ... Dealer says it could be because of the Aftermarket install... And that there is possible no more warranty protection because of it... I cant belive it. Now they dont knwo what causes it and how to fix it. I Called the Aftermarket installer and they say they get that a lot that Dealers blame outside companies.
The funny thing is the aftermarket installers do work for other BMW dealerships. They install Radars for them also. Just not for this specific Dealer.
Now i am stuck in the middle of this Blame Shifting game.

How do you tackle this mess... i am not sure... any thoughts...
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      02-15-2013, 10:47 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
I am shocked that it comes to this...

a 90day old e93 M3.

I had aftermarket Alarm and Radar protection installed from a Professional Location.

All fine about 3 weeks later (2 days ago) my Engine showed a Engine Malfunction Message. Went to the Dealer ... Dealer says it could be because of the Aftermarket install... And that there is possible no more warranty protection because of it... I cant belive it. Now they dont knwo what causes it and how to fix it. I Called the Aftermarket installer and they say they get that a lot that Dealers blame outside companies.
The funny thing is the aftermarket installers do work for other BMW dealerships. They install Radars for them also. Just not for this specific Dealer.
Now i am stuck in the middle of this Blame Shifting game.

How do you tackle this mess... i am not sure... any thoughts...
I had the same nonsense happen with another vehicle we used to own. Total BS. You just have to put your foot down about it. Tell them by law to void your warranty, they have to prove that the parts in question caused the issue at hand. Since they cannot do so, they have no grounds for voiding.
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      02-15-2013, 10:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THE TECH View Post
I had the same nonsense happen with another vehicle we used to own. Total BS. You just have to put your foot down about it. Tell them by law to void your warranty, they have to prove that the parts in question caused the issue at hand. Since they cannot do so, they have no grounds for voiding.
YEah but they are at the point of saying... if the car is not back in its original state we see no reason to pay for labor to fix your problem. as it could have easily been cased by the aftermarket stuff..
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      02-15-2013, 10:53 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
YEah but they are at the point of saying... if the car is not back in its original state we see no reason to pay for labor to fix your problem. as it could have easily been cased by the aftermarket stuff..
That's not how it works. Only when they figure out the issue are you presented with a bill. They can't blackmail you into putting the car to stock before they work on it. If they work on the car and find the your aftermarket parts are to blame, then and only then, are you responsible for the bill.

Sounds like finding another more reputable dealer is in order.
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      02-15-2013, 10:59 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by THE TECH View Post
That's not how it works. Only when they figure out the issue are you presented with a bill. They can't blackmail you into putting the car to stock before they work on it. If they work on the car and find the your aftermarket parts are to blame, then and only then, are you responsible for the bill.

Sounds like finding another more reputable dealer is in order.
They say the replaced the ECU (DME i think called) and some other modules (Spent ofer $3k) in parts and there are still problems... Now some guy from BMW is going to evaluate this as they can no longer justify the costs they put in. BMW seems to not like that they spent so much time/parts on it.
They seem to investigate.

I do know that my Smart Top Module and my Alarm Module as well as the Rear Camera Module all talk to the Can Bus somehow... But i can not imagine that they are to blame as the same stuff was installed on my 335i last year and there where never issues like that with it.
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      02-15-2013, 11:01 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
They say the replaced the ECU (DME i think called) and some other modules (Spent ofer $3k) in parts and there are still problems... Now some guy from BMW is going to evaluate this as they can no longer justify the costs they put in. BMW seems to not like that they spent so much time/parts on it.
They seem to investigate.

I do know that my Smart Top Module and my Alarm Module as well as the Rear Camera Module all talk to the Can Bus somehow... But i can not imagine that they are to blame as the same stuff was installed on my 335i last year and there where never issues like that with it.
On the flipside though you have to remember that it's the job of the warranty department to deny coverage whenever possible.

At this point it sounds like you just have to await the outcome.
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      02-15-2013, 11:03 AM   #7
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Try a different dealer. I would say in your case try the dealer that uses the company who installed your aftermarket pieces. Like the above poster stated they cannot void your warranty until the problem in question is proven to have been caused directly by installation or work done aftermarket that diminished the integrity of bmws engineering. Im sure a different dealer will service the car no problem.

Worst case scenario somehow it is due to the aftermarket installation. Which I feel is highly unlikely but I have seen crazier things. I think its best to deal with the situation at the dealer who does business with the aftermarket shop. Just my 2 cents
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      02-15-2013, 11:10 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaLLzZz View Post
Try a different dealer. I would say in your case try the dealer that uses the company who installed your aftermarket pieces. Like the above poster stated they cannot void your warranty until the problem in question is proven to have been caused directly by installation or work done aftermarket that diminished the integrity of bmws engineering. Im sure a different dealer will service the car no problem.

Worst case scenario somehow it is due to the aftermarket installation. Which I feel is highly unlikely but I have seen crazier things. I think its best to deal with the situation at the dealer who does business with the aftermarket shop. Just my 2 cents
Makes sense i guess i have to pay for the Car to be towed to that dealership.
I guess maybe worth paying for if that will fix the issue with the Warranty/ blaming game.
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      02-15-2013, 11:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
Makes sense i guess i have to pay for the Car to be towed to that dealership.
I guess maybe worth paying for if that will fix the issue with the Warranty/ blaming game.
Well you will have more issues if you decide that now since they've already performed work and replaced parts. At this point you are stuck with this dealer.
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      02-15-2013, 11:38 AM   #10
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Well you will have more issues if you decide that now since they've already performed work and replaced parts. At this point you are stuck with this dealer.
I don't agree. Your never stuck or cuffed to a dealer. There independently owned. Independently operated. Independent customer service. Now there is a good chance the car has been flagged by the VIN. But that may not be the case especially if there no lawsuit or such associated with the car.

If I was in the OP's dilemma I would go in my car and press the sos button try and get a free tow to the dealer who does business with his aftermarket shop and play dumb until further questioned. Never lie just say as little as possible. If they ask tell the truth. Bla bla and see where it unfolds from there. That seems to be his best bet currently.
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      02-15-2013, 11:40 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BaLLzZz View Post
I don't agree. Your never stuck or cuffed to a dealer. There independently owned. Independently operated. Independent customer service. Now there is a good chance the car has been flagged by the VIN. But that may not be the case especially if there no lawsuit or such associated with the car.

If I was in the OP's dilemma I would go in my car and press the sos button try and get a free tow to the dealer who does business with his aftermarket shop and play dumb until further questioned. Never lie just say as little as possible. If they ask tell the truth. Bla bla and see where it unfolds from there. That seems to be his best bet currently.
You are correct BUT the dealer has already done work on the car which hasn't been paid for or warranted yet.
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      02-15-2013, 11:56 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
I am shocked that it comes to this...

a 90day old e93 M3.

I had aftermarket Alarm and Radar protection installed from a Professional Location.

All fine about 3 weeks later (2 days ago) my Engine showed a Engine Malfunction Message. Went to the Dealer ... Dealer says it could be because of the Aftermarket install... And that there is possible no more warranty protection because of it... I cant belive it. Now they dont knwo what causes it and how to fix it. I Called the Aftermarket installer and they say they get that a lot that Dealers blame outside companies.
The funny thing is the aftermarket installers do work for other BMW dealerships. They install Radars for them also. Just not for this specific Dealer.
Now i am stuck in the middle of this Blame Shifting game.

How do you tackle this mess... i am not sure... any thoughts...
I know that in California they MUST PROVE that it is the aftermarket item that caused the problem, not just SUSPECT or use it as an excuse. Check your state laws. BMW is notorious for trying to squirm out of paying ANY claim.

If nothing else, your car is new enough I'd check out Geico's Mechanical Breakdown insurance. If your car is less than 15 months old/15k miles, you can purchase this insurance (costs me about $72 a year) to not only improve your current warranty, but extend it to 7 years/100k miles. The reviews from customers are there they NEVER try to reneg on a claim (covers EVERYTHING except consumable type items-you know, oil changes, brake jobs, tires, etc.) for only a $250 deductible.

I feel MUCH better knowing that I not only have a warranty after the original 4 years, but I also have someone who WILL help even during the warranty should BMW pull its usual tricks.
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      02-15-2013, 11:59 AM   #13
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The record is in the computer system which every BMW service dept will see once they search by vin. I'd say he's stuck with the dealer who seems to be trying to help him.
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      02-15-2013, 12:10 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
I am shocked that it comes to this...

a 90day old e93 M3.

I had aftermarket Alarm and Radar protection installed from a Professional Location.

All fine about 3 weeks later (2 days ago) my Engine showed a Engine Malfunction Message. Went to the Dealer ... Dealer says it could be because of the Aftermarket install... And that there is possible no more warranty protection because of it... I cant belive it. Now they dont knwo what causes it and how to fix it. I Called the Aftermarket installer and they say they get that a lot that Dealers blame outside companies.
The funny thing is the aftermarket installers do work for other BMW dealerships. They install Radars for them also. Just not for this specific Dealer.
Now i am stuck in the middle of this Blame Shifting game.

How do you tackle this mess... i am not sure... any thoughts...
There's a possibility of a mistake within the install. For instance, your installer may have mistakenly tapped into a CAN line instead of power. On the SmartTop, there is no wrong way it can be installed since it comes with a PnP harness. This is unlikely as you would would have errors immediately after installation (blinkers no longer work, windows inoperable, etc).

Another scenario would be a failed component. We've had numerous headaches with the reverse camera modules sourced from Korea, just removed another that was causing all sorts of CAN errors after time, and eventually - failing.

Start by removing the aftermarket components one at a time to see if the errors clear up.
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      02-15-2013, 12:54 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom @ eas View Post
There's a possibility of a mistake within the install. For instance, your installer may have mistakenly tapped into a CAN line instead of power. On the SmartTop, there is no wrong way it can be installed since it comes with a PnP harness. This is unlikely as you would would have errors immediately after installation (blinkers no longer work, windows inoperable, etc).

Another scenario would be a failed component. We've had numerous headaches with the reverse camera modules sourced from Korea, just removed another that was causing all sorts of CAN errors after time, and eventually - failing.

Start by removing the aftermarket components one at a time to see if the errors clear up.
Thank you for your thoughts....
Yeah and then lets say it wasnt that ... then who pays to put that all back in ?
Also i forgot to turn of the SMartop Module to stealth mode. I offered it to the dealership to turn it off... ... but they said not thats fine.

Now i cant event turn it off as the car has no Power
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      02-15-2013, 01:23 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigApple View Post
Thank you for your thoughts....
Yeah and then lets say it wasnt that ... then who pays to put that all back in ?
Also i forgot to turn of the SMartop Module to stealth mode. I offered it to the dealership to turn it off... ... but they said not thats fine.

Now i cant event turn it off as the car has no Power
I wouldn't expect BMW to foot the bill if it wasn't their problem.

This is all part of the troubleshooting process. What was the last item installed before the issues began? Likely that will be the culprit. It may not even be a device issue, but a compatibility issue between two devices.

Devices need to be completely disconnected in troubleshooting, not in stealth mode - starting with the last device installed and working backward.
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      02-15-2013, 03:23 PM   #17
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sounds like the vendors here are recommending a good approach. Strong-arming the dealer to say you guys do it unless you can prove cause-and-affect is the wrong approach. They'll just tell you to go F* yourself.

You should work with the strategy of removing each aftermarket component in the troubleshooting process and work with the dealer on this. I'm sure they're happy to help, but you gotta meet them halfway.

with all aftermarket components, needless to say, you gotta pay to play. These are the risks involved. Some more riskier than others.

Good luck.
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      02-15-2013, 03:25 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tom @ eas View Post
I wouldn't expect BMW to foot the bill if it wasn't their problem.

This is all part of the troubleshooting process. What was the last item installed before the issues began? Likely that will be the culprit. It may not even be a device issue, but a compatibility issue between two devices.

Devices need to be completely disconnected in troubleshooting, not in stealth mode - starting with the last device installed and working backward.
Here is what i was told so far... the Ignition Coil from the first cylinder has a short circuit. The mechanic said that some long sparks have shot out from there.
Diognostic cods keep telling about Misfireing on all (most) cylinders (orsome like that)

They stopped working on it as they saw aftermarket stuff installed ...
I never had any engine tuneup or so done... so i never messed with the engine or its coils....
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      02-15-2013, 03:41 PM   #19
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Quote:
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Here is what i was told so far... the Ignition Coil from the first cylinder has a short circuit. The mechanic said that some long sparks have shot out from there.
Diognostic cods keep telling about Misfireing on all (most) cylinders (orsome like that)

They stopped working on it as they saw aftermarket stuff installed ...
I never had any engine tuneup or so done... so i never messed with the engine or its coils....
so, it doesn't seem like a major issue. New coils and plugs and a computer reset is needed, am I right? Sounds like you'll be paying more for their labor than parts...
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      02-15-2013, 03:43 PM   #20
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so, it doesn't seem like a major issue. New coils and plugs and a computer reset is needed, am I right? Sounds like you'll be paying more for their labor than parts...
Not really at this point because of the shortage .. they stopped touching the car and point at the aftermarket installs... Seems thing are at a standstill.
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      02-15-2013, 03:51 PM   #21
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Proper follow-through procedures were listed already, it's up to you what steps are taken from this point forward.
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      02-15-2013, 04:04 PM   #22
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can you be more specific as to the "Engine malfunction"?
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