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      10-08-2009, 01:08 AM   #1
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Warranty Void!!!

There is no news like bad news.


Guys,

If you are tuning your ECUs, better be careful. I had a ticking noise after a track session and it was related to a bent exhaust valve. I sent it in to my dealer and they told me its normal and subsequently, sent me a letter like this below.

I am beginning to see quite a few engines with this problems with bent exhaust valves even on stock standard cars. Which makes me think at all if there is really a problem with these engines. A few experienced mechanics here have preliminarily told me that the exhaust valves may have been too hot and there is not much clearance between the pistons and the valves. I have a ticking sound now and I am waiting to get it fixed here. I am not sure what is wrong until I strip the engine and find out whats the problem.

I find it funny that both my engine and drive train warranty has been void. Initially my dealer put in the wrong oil for my DCT gearbox and extended 6 months warranty on it. Now they are voiding that as well in attempt to save cost on replacing it if it kabooms. Must be a great opportunity to void things they can while they can. Untill now, there is no proof that the ticking sound in the engine is due to the tune and why the drivetrain warranty was also voided and how that is related to the tune as well. I ahve no problems whatsoever with my drivetrain so I am quite stumped actually.

I was surfing through these forums so far and found out that this guy looks to have 100% the same problem as I have.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=307802

Anyway I think you guys should be careful nonetheless. I dont think BMW is looking at cars with engine problems with fixing or replacing it in mind even if there is a problem with tuned or stock standard cars. At least for me that was the case. I will just fix the engine on my own cost since it was tuned in order to reduce the sensitivity of the O2 sensors for the Akrapovic Exhaust and some power. Not crazy stuff.

I am interested to know those on stock cars who have this problem.

Another service by a loyal M3poster.
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      10-08-2009, 01:17 AM   #2
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how long have you had the tune for? and is it a custom?
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      10-08-2009, 01:30 AM   #3
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Ouch. Sorry to hear that. I do think that if push came to shove they will have a very tough time proving your tune did anything to the engine/drivetrain.
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      10-08-2009, 01:46 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QTRM3 View Post
how long have you had the tune for? and is it a custom?
Had it for 5 months with 0 problems. I only had the ticking sound after the second track day. First track day was flawless with the tune and I actually pushed it harder the first time than the second time around.
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      10-08-2009, 01:48 AM   #5
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Ouch. Sorry to hear that. I do think that if push came to shove they will have a very tough time proving your tune did anything to the engine/drivetrain.
I find it extremely disproportionate to void the drivetrain warranty when I have no problems with it now. BUT, it could be a problem down the road since they fucked that one big time with the wrong oil. I was quick not to drive off the car but to inform them they made a big mistake. Otherwise the whole gearbox would have imploded with just 1 redline. On hind sight, I should have not been polite enuff to inform them and wreck the whole gearbox then if I knew this was coming.

For sure they will have a hard time proving, since its only 2 lines of vague information on why they are voiding the car. And they took 3 days to make the decision after seeing the car. I find it extremely quick for otherwise reasons that dont prove anything beyond doubt.

Also, we dont have this kinda laws like the Magnuson Moss warranty to fall back on here since there is not much customer protection in places here.
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      10-08-2009, 01:49 AM   #6
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How'd they find out? They send your ECU to Germany or something? I heard a dealership can't find out themselves and have to get the ECU shipped somewhere...
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      10-08-2009, 01:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
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How'd they find out? They send your ECU to Germany or something? I heard a dealership can't find out themselves and have to get the ECU shipped somewhere...
Apparently there is a someone sitting at the BMW Asia branch that sees all the problematic cars. Think he has his ways to find things out. Well its good to know at least since alot of us think that is not possible since the ECU has to be shipped to Germany in order to know it was tuned.

Well now I know and we know.
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      10-08-2009, 02:00 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PencilGeek View Post
Did you increase the RPM limiter with the ECU tune? If yes, that's a smoking gun for bent valves. There appears to be very little margin on the valve springs in this motor. There's now starting to appear quite a few stories of bent valves and broken valve springs with over-revved motors.
I have a DCT and I am ABSOLUTELY sure there was no increase done to the RPM limiter. In fact, it doesnt make sense to since the stock motor have a big dip after 8k RPM. And i knew it wasn't a good idea too since the valve springs on this engine dont seem to be good enough to run above the limiter. So for sure, there is nothing done to the limiter.

I have a feeling that is what BMW will say to bent valves and valve springs as all the posts by some of those with these problems are told the same thing. I know I have hit the limiter a few times at 8,250 rpm but I dont hold it there for sure. I immediately shift. I had this problem with the old software where there was lag in the time you shift and the time the ECU shifts the gears. I dont see how a DCT can overrev either. Unlike conventional manual trannies, the dct has a prevention for over-rev.
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      10-08-2009, 02:13 AM   #9
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We all know that manufacturers leave a margin of error for safety but yes, any increase in power using a part not offered can be grounds for warranty voiding. All they have to say is you increased the HP level over the stock levels which strained the parts beyond their designed tolerance. Also, because of the extra HP the engine is making the trnasmission is stressed more as well.

Do I think ANY tune on an NA motor has enough of an increase in HP to be a problem? Not even a little. But as PG said, if the rev limiter was raised then you're screwed. But push comes to shove, you modded the engine and you have to live with the consequences. I mod all of my cars and I accept that some of what I do may void the warranty on some things.

Ya gotta pay to play.
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      10-08-2009, 02:18 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quality_sound View Post
We all know that manufacturers leave a margin of error for safety but yes, any increase in power using a part not offered can be grounds for warranty voiding. All they have to say is you increased the HP level over the stock levels which strained the parts beyond their designed tolerance. Also, because of the extra HP the engine is making the trnasmission is stressed more as well.

Do I think ANY tune on an NA motor has enough of an increase in HP to be a problem? Not even a little. But as PG said, if the rev limiter was raised then you're screwed. But push comes to shove, you modded the engine and you have to live with the consequences. I mod all of my cars and I accept that some of what I do may void the warranty on some things.

Ya gotta pay to play.
Fully agree. Our transmission is capable of handling 600nm of torque while our engine is only generating 400nm of torque. Tuned or not, nothing is going to ever hit close to 500nm with just a chip tune with normal mods apart from stroker and S/C. Thats why i find it weird they took this chance to void that as well.

I am paying for this for sure but am absolutely sure the rev limiter was never touched. Pretty freaking sure abt that.
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      10-08-2009, 03:02 AM   #11
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I think it's a CYA thing. Most service departments aren't up on aftermarket gear and what the OEM components are rated for. All they know is "if it's not BMW it's bad."

I went through a warranty issue with BMW for one of my old installers and you can elevate this to a regional guy who can reinstate certain parts of the warranty. It kept my installer from having to pay 10 large to have his car rewired to have his warranty reinstated on his entire electrical system. The OEM navi failed in his 3-series and when he took it in they said it was because we had installed aftermarket amps and speakers, like they're even remotely interrelated. it took some arguing and prrof from our side but it can be done.

I'd gather up as much evidence as you can supporting your case and schedule an appt. with the regional warranty guy. Good luck.
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      10-08-2009, 03:15 AM   #12
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Quote:
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I think it's a CYA thing. Most service departments aren't up on aftermarket gear and what the OEM components are rated for. All they know is "if it's not BMW it's bad."

I went through a warranty issue with BMW for one of my old installers and you can elevate this to a regional guy who can reinstate certain parts of the warranty. It kept my installer from having to pay 10 large to have his car rewired to have his warranty reinstated on his entire electrical system. The OEM navi failed in his 3-series and when he took it in they said it was because we had installed aftermarket amps and speakers, like they're even remotely interrelated. it took some arguing and prrof from our side but it can be done.

I'd gather up as much evidence as you can supporting your case and schedule an appt. with the regional warranty guy. Good luck.
Yeah thats exactly the train of thought I am having right now. If you noticed, the letter did not even offer me any option to reinstate the warrranty. I find that unusual for BMW to kick the customer one side and feel great about it. Oh I forgot, they should be. Ermmmmmm They are saving alot anyway. Nice fat bonus for work well done.

2 BMWs in 2 years that was fucked for me. 335 sold within 1 year because of wastegate issue that was not well done by the dealer. Had continual CEL lights and got rid of it. And now this. Is it just my luck or is BMW really focusing on cost cutting?

I used to think BMW really had great after sales support and customer service. With this, I wont ever touch another BMW as long as BMW Asia and my dealer is in the picture. Ah heck, my dealer lost the M division anyway. Thats 1 down. Fucking incompetent.
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      10-08-2009, 03:19 AM   #13
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Ouch. Sorry to hear that. I do think that if push came to shove they will have a very tough time proving your tune did anything to the engine/drivetrain.
The other way around.

You would have an extremely hard time fighting BMW. Good luck going one on one with BMW, if they void your warranty. Whether you think you are right or not, you can't fight a giant company like that. Class action lawsuits are only thing that get BMW's attention. Not some random guy with a M3, that put a tune in his car.
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      10-08-2009, 03:25 AM   #14
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Yeah thats exactly the train of thought I am having right now. If you noticed, the letter did not even offer me any option to reinstate the warrranty. I find that unusual for BMW to kick the customer one side and feel great about it. Oh I forgot, they should be. Ermmmmmm They are saving alot anyway. Nice fat bonus for work well done.

2 BMWs in 2 years that was fucked for me. 335 sold within 1 year because of wastegate issue that was not well done by the dealer. Had continual CEL lights and got rid of it. And now this. Is it just my luck or is BMW really focusing on cost cutting?

I used to think BMW really had great after sales support and customer service. With this, I wont ever touch another BMW as long as BMW Asia and my dealer is in the picture. Ah heck, my dealer lost the M division anyway. Thats 1 down. Fucking incompetent.
I can't see the letter. Most photo accounts are blocked on gov't computers.
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      10-08-2009, 03:29 AM   #15
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So should I be scared to bring my car into the dealer since I got a ECU tune?
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      10-08-2009, 03:37 AM   #16
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If you take it in for anything that requires them to scan your ECU.
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      10-08-2009, 03:44 AM   #17
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Quote:
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So should I be scared to bring my car into the dealer since I got a ECU tune?
No they dont check for regular maintenance nor do they care. And unless you have a problem they cant void it just cause they're bored. But if you do have a problem flash it back by the same guy that flashed your car before taking it in no big deal.
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      10-08-2009, 03:44 AM   #18
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So should I be scared to bring my car into the dealer since I got a ECU tune?
I bring it back all the time! But I have GIAC flash and I think they only raise the rev by 50-100 something like that.
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      10-08-2009, 04:17 AM   #19
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I bring it back all the time! But I have GIAC flash and I think they only raise the rev by 50-100 something like that.
I can tell you that itself is grounds to deny warranty even if nothing related to that is found. They will try to void whatever they can it seems. And no shit luck if BMW Asia happens to be the one to see your car. More often than not, look out for this guy Ralf Beck from BMW Asia. If he is the one looking at your car, you might as well try to solve it yourself. HONESTLY.
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      10-08-2009, 04:19 AM   #20
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I don't see the problem...you messed with the cars ECU, you now have an engine problem and BMW aren't prepared to fix it or continue giving you a warranty on it..sounds perfectly normal.
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      10-08-2009, 04:24 AM   #21
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I don't see the problem...you messed with the cars ECU, you now have an engine problem and BMW aren't prepared to fix it or continue giving you a warranty on it..sounds perfectly normal.
That's fine. But I don't see how voiding the drivetrain warranty had anything to do with the ECU. I don't have problems on the drivetrain and my dealer once screwed the job up by changing the wrong oil. I am more worried abt that part of the car later down the road if anything. As for the engine, I am fixing that at my cost. Essentially it's the drivetrain and the engine that makes the car. Some may argue it's related of course.
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      10-08-2009, 05:40 AM   #22
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I don't see the problem...you messed with the cars ECU, you now have an engine problem and BMW aren't prepared to fix it or continue giving you a warranty on it..sounds perfectly normal.
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