ACC Helps in Optimizing Warranty Claims for Auto and RV Dealers
Regardless of the type of repair order system used; electronic, hybrid or
paper, the dealer must be able to produce the originals or true copies of
the original documents for all records necessary to support the services claimed
The policies suggested below provide the dealer with
guidelines for accurate warranty claim preparation and submission. The following
procedures are to be followed by all members of the service department.
The Repair Order #1:
The repair order information obtained from the customer and vehicle must be
accurate and complete. The date, odometer, delivery or in-service date, owner/operator,
and contact information must be included on the repair order. There may only
be one VIN per claim, except in the instance of corporate parts return claims.
The Concern #2:
The service consultant’s description of each of the customer’s
concerns is to be clear and concise. Install special order part (SOP) and
repair leak are not acceptable descriptions. The statement should provide
answers to what, when, where and how, i.e. check front-end vibration at highway
speeds when applying the brake. Concerns that are vague or written in the
form of a work instruction are not acceptable, i.e. repair leaking oil pan.
The customer is not to incur any diagnostic time expenses associated with
a warranty repair.
The Charges #3:
At the time of repair order write-up, there must be a clear understanding
of responsibility of charges. Service management must authorize any changes
to the responsibility of charges. Not only is it policy, but also a courtesy
to the customer, that they be made aware of any additional charges on the
repair order prior to picking their vehicle up.
The Signature #4:
A customer signature must be on each customer pay and warranty repair order.
Their signature authorizes the dealership to perform the requested service.
A signed early bird form or electronic signatures are considered valid signature
documents. The customer is to be provided with a copy of the initial repair
Repairs performed on in-stock vehicles must be authorized and signed for by
service management prior to beginning repairs.
RO Separation #5:
The technician is to only receive the shop or work copy of the repair order.
The Cause and Correction #6:
The technician is responsible for clearly and accurately documenting the cause
of failure and correction for each of the customer’s concerns. The cause
statement must be descriptive and contain all diagnostic codes, test results,
specifications, adjustments, readings, and indicators to support the repair
performed. Oil leakage is not an acceptable cause statement; rather the tech
should document oil pan gasket leaking. The correction statement must be equally
The technician’s cause and correction statements should be transferred
to all copies of the repair invoice.
Straight Time #7:
Straight time must be separately time punched and pre-approved by service
management on the repair order. Technician inefficiency or lack of training
does not justify straight time.
Added Operation #8:
Repair work added to the repair order after the initial write-up is considered
an added operation that service management must approve. The repair order
must reflect the “added operation” documentation to be valid.
Technicians may not perform additional repairs without authorization, i.e.
approval must be obtained to repair the noisy blower motor noticed while test-driving
the vehicle for the documented brake pulsation.
The Parts #9:
The repair order must document all parts used in the repair of the vehicle.
The EGR valve used to repair the service engine soon light concern should
be charged out on the appropriate condition line, not with the instrument
The technician should return all defective warranty parts to the parts department
to be tagged, and retained. The defective area on the part should be clearly
noted. Parts requested by the Warranty Parts Center that do not display a
factory defect, may result in a debit to the dealer; a replaced blower motor
with a mouse nest in it, for example.
The Supplies #10:
Shop supplies, materials and waste disposal fees are considered part of the
dealerships fixed operation expense and may not be claimed on a warranty repair
order. Brake clean is not reimbursable on a warranty repair.
The sublet repair invoice must contain the same detailed customer and vehicle
header information, as does a repair order. The amount billed by the sublet
facility may not exceed the amount ACC would have reimbursed the dealership
to perform the same repair. The sublet invoice must reflect any discounts
or allowances made available to the dealership in performing non-warranty
The repair order must reflect the repair as being performed by a sublet facility,
not by the dealership.
Labor Operation Assignment #12:
Service management is responsible for ensuring the appropriate labor operation
number and labor times are assigned to each warranty condition. The technician
should not hold that responsibility.
Shop comebacks are the responsibility of the dealership; ACC does not reimburse
for repairs performed again as a result of improper inspection, diagnosis
The Final Repair Order #13:
The final copy of the repair order must reflect the comments noted on the
repair order by the technician. Alterations to the documentation may only
be made by the repairing technician. The customer is to be provided with a
copy of the final invoice that displays all of the repairs performed to the
Approval and Authorization #14:
The service manager or director is ultimately responsible for all necessary claim authorizations
and approvals. Empowerment is not to be given to any non-managerial level
personnel, i.e. warranty administrator or service consultant without careful consideration. The service
consultant and/or technician must obtain authorization from the service manager
prior to beginning repairs that require prior approval,
dealer inventory vehicles, and customer concern not
duplicated repairs, for example.
Service management should be familiar with the dealerships level of empowerment.
Courtesy Transportation #15:
If the vehicle warranty provides coverage for courtesy transportation
in the event the customer’s vehicle is unsafe/unable to drive, repairs will
take more than one day to perform, or if repairs may not be completed due
to part unavailability. The program may also be used in goodwill situations
where appropriate with advance ACC approval.
The dealership may also offer shuttle, fuel or public transportation options
for the customer’s convenience.
The VIN of the rental vehicle must be included on the warranty claim for reimbursement.
Parts Expediting #16:
Every effort should be made by the dealer to locally obtain a part if it is
not in stock. ACC approves parts expediting to be used in the event the part is
not locally available. Communication within the parts and service departments
is critical in relaying the level of urgency associated with a part order,
especially in vehicle down situations.
Concern Not Duplicated #17:
When the technician cannot duplicate a customers concern and no corrective
action is performed, the dealer may submit a claim using labor operation numbers
9991. Whenever those labor operation numbers are used on a warranty
claim, service management must grant approval.
Record Retention #18:
Supporting documentation may play a critical role in a repair procedure, especially
in the case of a customer returning to the dealership to have a previously
diagnosed part installed. The previous repair order should be readily accessible
to support the second claim for the repair, as the diagnosis was performed
on the first repair order. Service history VIN files should be retained in
sequence by model year and the last six positions of the VIN or accessible
by VIN if records are electronically scanned.
The documentation contained within the VIN file is a comprehensive history
of all the vehicles service events, not just warranty.
Compliance begins with awareness and understanding.
Familiarize yourself with each of the points
and educate service department personnel to ensure that the guidelines are
being followed in their entirety.