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Old 05-03-2012, 10:02 AM   #1
strych9
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New ECM to protect warranty?

So...I absolutely want to start putting some horsepower into my new hot rod, but the posts I read here scare the crap out of me when it comes to voiding the lengthy powertrain warranty that GM provides us on these cars.

I also know the Magnuson-Moss act quite well, since I'm an ex-dealership monkey. So I had a thought: has anyone here purchased a new ECM for their Camaro to use for modifications, and keep the OEM unit in it's original configuration as a spare? That way if you ever had a warranty issue you could pop in the virgin OEM unit back into the car and take it in for service. There would be no electronic "markers" to show that any programming had ever been done. Unless you clearly broke the car due to the mods, your warranty *should* remain intact.

When I modded my Mustangs, warranty was never an issue since I was a dealership employee and could make Ford believe whatever I wanted them to. Now I'm on my own with no safety net.

Anybody tried this? Thoughts?
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:12 AM   #2
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It doesn't work. If you search you'll see numerous threads on this topic, and it doesn't work. You can't trick GM. If you want to mod your car you have to give up your warranty. It's that simple.
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:19 AM   #3
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Yeah, I see some of the threads now. I can has reading skillz. Thanks for pointing it out.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:10 AM   #4
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Stieger is correct. They look at "flash counts" and the unique id related to each.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:46 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strych9 View Post
So...I absolutely want to start putting some horsepower into my new hot rod, but the posts I read here scare the crap out of me when it comes to voiding the lengthy powertrain warranty that GM provides us on these cars.

I also know the Magnuson-Moss act quite well, since I'm an ex-dealership monkey. So I had a thought: has anyone here purchased a new ECM for their Camaro to use for modifications, and keep the OEM unit in it's original configuration as a spare? That way if you ever had a warranty issue you could pop in the virgin OEM unit back into the car and take it in for service. There would be no electronic "markers" to show that any programming had ever been done. Unless you clearly broke the car due to the mods, your warranty *should* remain intact.

When I modded my Mustangs, warranty was never an issue since I was a dealership employee and could make Ford believe whatever I wanted them to. Now I'm on my own with no safety net.

Anybody tried this? Thoughts?

If you are going for just Bolt-ons I would say go for it.

If you plan on adding a cam, I would make sure that you go through a quality shop, or have enough knowledge to be able to tackle it yourself without error.

If you plan on FI, I would make damn sure that you have a good tuner before even thinking about voiding it.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LS3 SS View Post
If you are going for just Bolt-ons I would say go for it.

If you plan on adding a cam, I would make sure that you go through a quality shop, or have enough knowledge to be able to tackle it yourself without error.

If you plan on FI, I would make damn sure that you have a good tuner before even thinking about voiding it.
I am planning on headers, full exhaust, CAI, 4.10's, TB, and cam. I'm an ex-pro tech, and will do these things myself. All my previous mods to my Mustangs were all done by myself, so I have no apprehension about taking on these projects.

What's out of my element is the ECM tuning. On my Fords, none was necessary. The PCM had a wide enough operating range that it would just adapt to the bolt-ons. I'll have to research the Omaha area and see who's reputable. I have time; I gotta get a second set of wheels before I start sinking cash into the obsession. Thanks for the input.
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