What's does a manufacturer's warranty actually cover?

I have an 2011 Vauxhall Astra which is covered by Vauxhall's lifetime warranty. After the last service it came back with an advisory stating "slight oil between engine and gearbox, suspect rear main oil seal leaking".

Having spoken to a number of people on the Vauxhall customer care team I was eventually told that all seals were excluded from the warranty. I was also told the cylinder head gasket, which could be described as a seal, was included.

When I purchased the car I was given "Vauxhall Vehicle Terms for Lifetime Warranty" which states the following are covered "1. Engine and transmission and electronic parts of the powertrain". The document goes on to say "Wiring harnesses, hoses and connectors are excluded." and "Furthermore, not covered are all service maintenance repairs and wear and tear parts as mentioned in in section 3 of the Vauxhall Warranty terms. Excluded is the replacement of components that have failed due to wear and tear.". This last quote seems at odds with the statements of what is covered because it could be argued most failures of moving parts could be as a result of wear and tear. In addition there is no section 3 and hence no list of excluded parts.

Given this contradictory and confusing information, and also since I expect Vauxhall is not unique when it comes to limiting warranty liabilities, I was wondering whether you had any advice as to establishing what is and isn't covered under warranty both during the purchase process and later when something goes wrong.

Asked on 9 April 2016 by Alastair

Answered by Honest John
This always was a very vague warranty and it has now been dropped. The job you describe is a very expensive one, involving removal of the transmission at least and replacement of the clutch. You could threaten to sue the supplying dealer, but I have no record of any such small claims track cases succeeding.
Tags: warranties
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