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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Sorry if there is already another post like this, I was unable to find it.

Here is my story; I have a 2012 KIA Optima SX, about 9 months ago I switched out my Fog, Interior, License Plate, Trunk and Reverse bulbs to LED’s. I have had no issue with them and the swap out was simple, a straight bulb replacement.
I went to start my car last week to go to work and it would not start however all the cluster lights came on. So I checked the fusses and the Starter Fuse under the steering wheel was blown, no big deal I replaced it with the same amp fuse. My car then started just fine but within seconds smoke started to billow in from the fuse box area. I immediately turned off my car and checked ALL the fuses…none were burnt out.
I then proceeded to check the fuse box in the engine and found the Backup fuse had blown; also the smell of smoke was strong from that area. Once again I replaced the fuse with the same amp and started my car, two issues came from this.
  1. I was no longer able to get my car out of Park
  2. The revers camera immediately comes on while in Park
I then noticed my Revers lights were on while in park. I got a screw driver and pushed the shift lock release button to switch gears, when I did that I noticed this.
  1. No matter what gear I was in the Backup Camera and my Reverse Lights remained on.
  2. Once placed in Reverse or Drive there is a delay before it goes into gear and when it does it shifts hard, a loud thud noise.
  3. My check engine light is now on.
I removed the Backup fuse to disable the camera and reverse lights then took my car over to the dealership for service. After having my car 5 days they told me that they are going to VOID my warranty because the LED lights were the cause. They charged me $220 to diagnose, then said they would need another $340 to determine if they can repair or replace where the issue is coming from, I may need to buy a new wiring harness for over a $1000 as well.
I asked them if they knew for 100% sure that the LED lights caused all this since I have had them installed for over 9 months without any issues. They responded with no, but that is all they can come up with and they finished by saying that The KIA manufacture rep told them that could be the cause.
Needless to say I feel that this is complete BS and they are trying to do whatever they can to get out of repairing it out of warranty and gouge me for money.
I have since then pulled my car from the KIA service center and took it to another one for a second opinion. The new one told us that this should all be covered under warranty and that the LED lights would not cause this issue. However they are unable to do the repair under warranty because the first KIA service center VOIDED my warranty. So now I am working with a KIA rep from the manufacture to investigate this to see why my warranty is voided out and if it was just. The KIA rep even considers the bulbs that I swapped out to be a basic bulb replacement, no different than changing the bulb in your own house.
My question is, has anyone had anything similar to this issue, with their LED lights and/or fighting to have their warranty un-voided.
I am looking for suggestion as how to proceed.

Thank you!

PS…I forgot to mention the first KIA service center staff were completely unprofessional and got argumentative with me when I was asking basic questions.
 

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2012 Kia Optima
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1,803 Posts
Haven't heard of anyone else having this issue but the from what I understand is the burden of proof is on them to say thats what caused the issue. Tell them that they have to show you proof. Someone saying "it could be the cause" is not proof therefore your warranty is not voided. Sounds like the first KIA Service center doesn't know what they are talking about. You are correct in that they are full of BS.
 

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Premium Member
2012 Kia Optima
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1,684 Posts
**** that sucks.... While it is on Kia to prove it's the LED that caused it, you'd pretty much need to threaten to sue if they can't prove it and charge you fee for it... I haven't seen a dealer willingly go through all the process of finding the cause of an issue if they can avoid it... Is there anyway to shut off the reverse lights without removing the fuse for it?
 

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Based on the Magnuson Moss warranty act a car manufacturer can not void a warranty based on aftermarket parts without proof. A car manufacturer can not void warranty based on the replacement of EOM parts as long as the replacement parts are with in OEM spec. This prevents car manufacturers from saying you have to buy this $100 KIA stamped oil filter or we'll void you warranty when you can find the exact filter (non KIA stamp) online for $20. However, there is a very fine line with this act. For example your turbo goes out and you replace it with a bigger turbo and months later you blow your engine. Obviously your blown engine will not be covered under warranty on the basis of the turbo.

Be sure to understand the fine print of the act.

I saw this act brought up a lot when I owned a BMW. Almost everyone on the forum would replace their spark plugs with BOSCH plugs that were the exact model as the OEM plugs that could be purchased at the dealer except they did not have the BMW stamp on them. The BOSCH plugs were half the price. When members would bring their cars in with engine issues the would get denied because of their plugs not being OEM. One mention of the Magnuson Moss warranty act and getting corporate involved dealers quickly changed their tune

Mention getting KIA corporate involved and I bet you'll get a different response.
 

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Your K5 Optima Vendor
Tesla Model X P100D
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Wow this really sucks. As others have mentioned, the dealership cannot void your warranty without the burden of proof. A matter of fact, a dealership cannot void your warranty at all. Only the manufacturer can void your warranty.

I have never heard of LED lights causing these kinds of issues that would become such a problem. It really is sad that one dealer can be so bad while others can be so much better. I hope you get your situation resolved as soon as possible. Please keep us up-to-date and let us know what happens as you find out.
 

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Former Administrator
2011 K5 Turbo
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Go print out a copy of the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, and slap it down in front of them.
 

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2012 Black SX Prem. & Tech.
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Yes, wouldn't there need to be at least the diagnosis performed by Kia before they void the warranty?

You said they wanted you to pay for them to diagnose, so they haven't even confirmed.

I don't think Kia corporate would be happy with dealerships jumping the gun like that and prematurely voiding warranty before even doing a diagnosis.



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i got a bad feeling this is going to happen to me. They were nice enough to change out the battery the first time there was an issue. Second was 60 for a diag and I'm freaking out that there will be a third
 

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2013 Optima
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914 Posts
I'm guessing they didn't void the entire warranty just warranty coverage for this issue.
 

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2017 KIA Optima SX
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1,353 Posts
the kia rep should be able to unvoid warranty and if they dont have the proof and charged you for diagnostics i would get a lawyer and get them for scamming owners and leaving them with no recourse. i wonder who their kia rep buddy was. I bet this dealer has done this before.
 

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The onus of proof lies on the dealer. Sounds like you just got a gem of a service dept. If they got argumentative with you and then voided the warranty coverage I would go back to the KIA rep and dealer with a copy of the Magnusson and also tell them you are going after them for acting on bad faith. If they did not run the diagnostic (since they want you to pay to run it) then they are really painting themselves into a corner. Unfortunately my guess is they will argue rather than admitting stupidity.

Good luck.
 

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2012 Black SX Prem. & Tech.
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Wait, isn't this like extortion? They get a hunch and void the warranty to put you over the barrel, then extort fees to force you to pay for diagnosis.

They are holding your warranty hostage.

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Your K5 Optima Vendor
Tesla Model X P100D
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Wait, isn't this like extortion? They get a hunch and void the warranty to put you over the barrel, then extort fees to force you to pay for diagnosis.

They are holding your warranty hostage.
What worse is most dealers scare customers into not touching their cars for fear that they will void their warranty. Aftermarket license plate bulbs? Nope voids your warranty! :lol:
 

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2012 KIA Optima HYBRID
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3,605 Posts
Reminds me of the dealership where i bought my KIA's, brought my KIA Sorento for a part recall something to do with the shocks, then they saw my Sorento was dropped (lowered) so they told me that it voided my warranty on my wheels etc, if something happen with my shocks or something related with it its not covered with warranty anymore, ONLY THAT PART..
 
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