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If you are the proud owner of a new, or gently used RV, chances are that you have a warranty. In addition to the manufacturer’s warranty, you may have also opted for the extended warranty that RV dealerships offer. As a matter of fact, your appliances, air conditioner, and other mechanical parts of your RV may have their own individual warranties. Warranties give us a certain peace of mind that if something goes wrong, it will be taken care of. But there are certain things you can do that will void your RV warranty, without even knowing it. Scary, right?
One important thing to keep in mind is that an RV warranty is not a replacement for RV insurance. Your RV warranty will not cover things like regular maintenance, damage from collisions, etc. All warranties are different. Make sure you go over your RV warranty carefully to know what is, and more importantly, what is not covered.
Know Your RV Warranty Coverage
There are two common levels of RV warranty coverage. These are known as comprehensive and exclusionary policies.
A comprehensive policy will list everything that is covered by your RV warranty. For example, the water heater, slide-outs, appliances, levelers, etc. So, if it’s not listed or not covered in the sales contract, it’s not covered.
An exclusionary policy does just the opposite. This policy will list everything that is NOT covered by the warranty. Meaning, if something in your rig fails, and it’s NOT listed in the exclusionary policy, then it’s covered.
How You Can Void Your RV Warranty
If you bought your rig brand new, you more than likely have a warranty of 1 to 3 years, depending on the manufacturer. When you think about it, that’s not very long. Extended warranties, on the other hand, are expensive and there are things you could do that can void your RV warranty. Did you know that some manufacturers will void your RV warranty if you live in your rig full-time? That’s just the beginning! There are a few different ways you can accidently void your RV warranty without even knowing, until it’s too late.
Common Upgrades Can Void Your RV Warranty
When you think of common upgrades you can make to your rig, you probably think of things like adding solar, upgrading the batteries, or upgrading the appliances. Sure, these are great ways to elevate your RVing experience, but doing so may void your RV warranty.
Some warranties will not allow you to make these types of upgrades unless they are done by certified installer.
Living In Your RV Full-Time
Some RV manufacturers will void the RV warranty if you live in it full-time. In fact, some of these mass-produced travel trailers and campers just aren’t built for that. They are designed and built to be “entry-level” or “budget friendly”. They are built for the occasional weekend camping trip. So, if you decide to live in your RV full-time, you just might void your RV warranty.
The dealership likely will not bring this up if you tell them that it will be for full-time use, or long-term use for that matter.
The way the manufacturer can deny your warranty claim is to tell you that you have been using your RV in a way that it was never designed for.
Not all RV manufacturers are like this. So, before you decide to buy that rig for full-time use, do your homework, and read the fine print.
Using The Wrong Service Center
Kellie and I got lucky on this one. When we bought our slightly used Kodiak, we went ahead and sprung for the extended warranty. There is no stipulation in the warranty about RV service centers, only that the deductible is cheaper if we use the dealership versus other service centers. However, you could easily void your RV warranty if you take your rig to the wrong service center.
As frustrating as it is to wait for repairs, if your warranty states that it must be serviced at a specific location, taking it somewhere else for repairs could void your warranty.
Remodeling Can Void Your RV Warranty
One of the first things many RV owners, especially the DIYer, want to do is start customizing their rig. Keep in mind that doing so may void your RV warranty. Make sure you check your specific RV warranty before you start trying to film your own version of “Fixer Upper” or “First Time Flippers”.
Some of things that may void your RV warranty are upgrades to the electrical system, air conditioning, heating, plumbing, upgrading appliances, etc. All of these things will likely void your warranty, unless, of course, they are done by a certified technician.
All RV warranties are different. Always make sure you do your research and find the warranty that best fits your individual needs. If you are considering an extended warranty for your RV, find out what is covered, and what is NOT covered. Read the fine print. The last thing you want to do is void your RV warranty by doing something you believed was the right thing to do.
Warranties are extremely useful when something in your RV fails. Repairs can quickly add up if you are stuck with the bill. Have you made a mistake that voided your RVs warranty? If so, let us know in the comment section below.
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