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GM Warranty and Plowing - may NOT Covered!

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by Highland Ranger, Aug 23, 2005.

  1. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    First post. I am not a commercial plower.

    Bought a new 2005 2500 Avalanche for towing hauling and plowing. Wanted the dealer to install a plow - but had questions about the warranty that the dealer could not answer.

    GM's response below.

    Essentially GM said that they might not honor the warranty under certain circumstances even with the Plow Prep package.

    Correspondence below. Sorry for the length but I thought some might find it interesting, if not outrageous. Or maybe this is old news for you guys.

    Seems wild to me . . . or am I making a big deal out of nothing?

    (Names changed to protect the innocent)


    -----Original Message-----
    From: cac@chevrolet.com [mailto:cac@chevrolet.com]
    Sent: Tuesday, August 09, 2005 7:07 PM


    Thank you for contacting the Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center. I appreciate you taking the time to write us in regards to our plow attachment policy.

    I apologize for your dissatisfaction with our policy although I am glad that you are able to understand our position in regards to this matter. I have documented your suggestions in regards to the equipment the vehicle would need to make this feasible and working with the plow upfitters to make a plow attachment covered under the warranty. I appreciate the time you took to write these suggestions to us. Have a nice day.

    If you should need to contact us in the future, simply reply to this message or call our Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center at 1-800-222-1020. Customer Relationship Managers are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., Eastern Time.

    Again, thank you for contacting Chevrolet.

    Customer Relationship Manager
    Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center

    -----Original Message-----
    Sent: 8/9/05 8:35:39 AM
    To: cac@chevrolet.com
    Subject: RE:

    I realize that this is essentially a legalese response and on some level it is expected, particularly in light of the onerous government regulation of the auto industry and the litigious nature of our society.

    However it is still very disappointing coming from my favorite car manufacturer.

    Reading this as a lay person, you essentially said that any General Motors pickup truck equipped with a plow could potentially be voiding some portion of it's new vehicle warranty even WITH the plow prep package i.e. if I drive into a dealer with a driveline issue and a plow bracket I need to cross my fingers.

    As a longtime GM fan, I feel General Motors can do better than this.

    At a minimum it seems to me you could team with Western, Fisher, Meyers and Boss and get some or all of their models approved for use under a new vehicle warranty.

    Microsoft does it in the software industry with hardware manufacturers and actually certifies hardware for use with Windows. Costs of the certification process are borne by the hardware manufacturer - in your case you could charge the plow manufacturers to be factory approved.

    Then you could roll them out of the factory with the prep package and a plow AND a full warranty.

    Regarding the difficulty of doing this: Commenting as a mechanical engineer and with DOT issues aside, I'm guessing your warranty issues would be power train (possible heat issues with the plow blocking the radiator) and power issues (hydraulic pump and auxiliary lighting load on the electrical system) maybe structure (axle loading and frame/suspension loading). Snow loading could be an issue on lighter duty trucks but I'm guessing you'd loose traction before overloading anything (frame, driveline etc.) Might be safety issues with the airbag, although I'd guess it would not be an issue.

    With 2500 series trucks and the right engine cooling fan setup, you should have no issues other than whatever Government regs are involved - and the plow manufacturers must have a handle on that.

    Bottom line: Buying a $45k Avalanche 2500, I should be able to have a snow plow put on it with peace of mind.

    Although it pains me to say it, I will be checking with Ford and Chrysler to see what their policy is . . . . I can't imagine that all these trucks I see with plows on them are risking not be covered under warranty.

    Thank you for your prompt (albeit disappointing) response,

    -----Original Message-----
    From: cac@chevrolet.com [mailto:cac@chevrolet.com]
    Sent: Tuesday, August 09, 2005 6:23 AM
    Subject: FW: "Plow Warranty"


    Thank you for contacting the Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center. I appreciate you taking the time to write us in regards to whether or not a light duty plow attachment can void the new vehicle warranty.

    All vehicles released from the assembly plant are inspected to ensure they comply with government specifications, as well as standards established by the Engineering Department. Chevrolet does not recommend modifying a car or truck after it has left the assembly plant. Changes may adversely affect the vehicle and possibly result in operational problems. This could result in the warranty voiding of specific items covered under the New Vehicle Limited Warranty.

    Certain non-approved parts or assemblies installed by a company that is not authorized by GM, may result in a change to the vehicle's design characteristics and may affect the vehicle's ability to conform to federal law. If a GM part failure occurs as the result of the installation or use on a non-GM approved part, the warranty will not be honored.

    If you should need to contact us in the future, simply reply to this message or call our Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center at 1-800-222-1020.

    Customer Relationship Managers are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m., Eastern Time.

    Again, thank you for contacting Chevrolet.

    Customer Relationship Manager
    Chevrolet Customer Assistance Center

    -----Original Message-----
    From: faq@chevrolet.com
    Sent: 8/7/05 11:02:38 PM
    To: cac@chevrolet.com

    Originating Email Address: faq@chevrolet.com #Subject=Chevrolet Avalanche Product Information

    -----Original Message-----
    From: faq@chevrolet.com
    Sent: 8/7/05 8:45:24 PM
    To: faq@chevrolet.com
    Subject: Chevrolet Avalanche Product Information

    Vehicle of Interest : Avalanche
    Purchase Horizon: : Within 1 month

    Comments : I am considering purchase of an Avalanche 2500; the one the dealer has is NOT equipped with a plow prep package. I would like to use a light duty plow for plowing a residential driveway (i.e. not commercial use)

    Will this void the warranty?
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2005
  2. Frozen001

    Frozen001 Senior Member
    from Rome NY
    Messages: 908

    Isn't there some sort of law (or something like a law) that puts the burden on the manufacture of the vehicle to prove that the failure occurred as a direct result of the plow being placed on the vehicle??

    Anyway, Most of the the time it is a the discretion on the dealer. Many of us on here have had out clutch fans replaced free of charge because the trucks over heated with plows on them. Also I bet if you took it to court you could win (assuming you bought the truck with the plow-prep package) package. (I made sure my truck had it or else I would not have put a plow on it) No court in the right mind would say that a snow plow is not a recommended option on a truck with the snow-plow prep package, again assuming you followed the plow manufactures recommendations and did not over load the truck(i.e. exceed its weight ratings).
  3. lawnmedic

    lawnmedic Senior Member
    Messages: 703

    Warranty has everything to do with the dealer. I deal with a small dealer that has always been very helpful with my needs.

    The dealer gets paid less money from GM than they can charge you, so some dealers try to deny any warranty claim so that they can make more money...
  4. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    True. And the owner of the local dealer assured me that they would indeed not be looking for any brackets.

    But, if as happened this year, I had a problem with the Suburban on vacation in North Carolina and had to go to a dealer down there . . . . then it becomes a crap shoot.

    Just thought their response was interesting.
  5. ratlover

    ratlover PlowSite.com Addict
    from IL
    Messages: 1,325

    basicly they sided stepped saying anything other than you may void part of your warantee bla bla bla

    They have to prove what ever you did or didnt do casused the failure.

    If you pop a motor on vacation at disney land I wouldnt worry about anything. If you take your truck in and the front end is shot I may be concerened about getting it covered.

    Its realy not a crap shoot.....most of the times the dealer will operate with the intention of screwing the easy victim and if he preceves your not going to be a push over when you assert yourself in a curtious but firm matter he will ussualy play nice. This goes for ANYTHING!!!!! Sometimes you luck out and get a place that dosnt play games.....
  6. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    SIMPLE.................If your GM (or just about ANY brand) truck was
    NOT equipped with the VYU plow prep. option from the factory
    GM (and others) WILL NOT warranty any snowplowing related
    breakage......................Or void your warranty altogether !

    I have been there and done that with my NON- VYU plow prep.
    97 Chevy truck.

    It took my bud at another dealer to "slip" it thru for a warranty
    transfer case repair........................

    Take a gander at the Ford forums and see the denied warranty
    repairs and BS some of our fellow plowheads are having to deal
    with on their factory plow prep. equipped rigs....................geo

    SURE SUCKS THO...................................
  7. sonjaab

    sonjaab PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,425

    RANGER...........Forgot to ask..............Does your Av have the VYU
    plow prep. option already? Check the RPO list on the bottom of
    your glove box.

    If it DOES you ARE covered for any snowplowing related breakage !
    I broke some parts on my other VYU equipped GM trucks and had no
    problem (other than time waiting to fix during the blizzard events)
    getting them repaired at N/C under warranty.....................

    I only had that 1 hassle with my 97. But it does depends on your
    dealer if your truck does NOT have VYU. Some don't care, Some do!

    Good luck................keep us posted.......................geo :drinkup:

    CARDOCTOR PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,304

    it depends on your dealer.before i bought my dodge i talked to the
    service manager.i asked him how many trans would be covered under the 7-70 warranty. his said as many as go bad as long as i had the plow pkge.

  9. rcpd34

    rcpd34 Senior Member
    from MD
    Messages: 662

    GM won't put it in writing, but...

    I doubt you'll have a problem. I never have in all my years and over a dozen trucks.
  10. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Actually their response says it doesn't matter if I had the prep package or not.

    The truck does not have the prep package - basically wiring, bigger alternator and a fan mod of some sort.

    Will not be taking it on the highway where airflow might be an issue and will only be doing a few driveways.

    Shoudl not be an issue . . .

    CARDOCTOR PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,304

    you should have spent the extra couple dollars and got the plow prep
    if your truck breaks you wont have a leg to stand on.hopefully you have a good dealer that wont break you chops and void your warranty.if your only doing a few drives im sure youll be fine.just be easy on it.

    JOHN payup
  12. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Not a question of the money. I think the option is $300; not noticeable on a $40k truck

    There were no 2005 2500's left in the northeast that had it; and even if they did, you couldn't get it with the sun roof.

    Which I need . . . . . have to have somewhere for the cigar smoke to go!


    And again, they said even with the package warranty might be an issue.
  13. sixspeed

    sixspeed Senior Member
    Messages: 306

  14. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 27,864

    I was going to buy a new GMC 2500 Crew-Cab shortbox, 4x4 with the Duramax.

    I told the dealer that I wouldn't because they wouldn't warranty it if I put a plow on. The Duramax / Crew-Cab doesn't offer plow prep.

    They got ahold of the regional manager, who said, in writing, that they would honor the warranty if that was the only thing that kept me from buying the GMC.

    I ended up buying a new Dodge, I couldn't justify the extra $5k for basically leather seats.
  15. Highland Ranger

    Highland Ranger Junior Member
    Messages: 13

    Only thing I could think of is that if you plow hard you could ripple the roof . . . . . but now I hear they are offering the plow prep with the sunroof for the 2006's . . . . so much for that theory.

    This may be one of those "because" situations.

    JRKRACE Senior Member
    Messages: 172

    I went through this myself...I wanted a CC DMAX with a plow but GM would not warranty it.....The local Fisher dealer would not even touch it, so I went with a plow prepped 6.0 gas crew cab. I think the whole thing stinks..Engine combos...cab combos...Either build a truck to it's maximum potential or don't build one at all.Ford and Dodge offer a plow prep package on diesel crew cabs, how come no GM?..The way GM is going,I'll bet that the new for 07 HD pickups will still ride on skinny 245 tires and still won't offer a plow prepped diesel crew. So much for listening to people who actually buy the trucks... :realmad: Rant over..