Fuel Smarts

EPA Corrects Language in On-Board Diagnostics Provision

July 07, 2009

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The Environmental Protection Agency has confirmed that its rule related to On-Board Diagnostics systems was not meant to prevent aftermarket facilities from servicing heavy-duty trucks and engines.


According to the Automotive Parts Remanufacturers Association, the language of the final rule seemed to absolve heavy-duty engine manufacturers from liability for emissions warranty if an aftermarket company had worked on the engine.

"If such were the case, no heavy-duty vehicle owner could feel safe taking his heavy-duty vehicle to an independent service provider during the warranty period for fear that he might void his warranty," the Automotive Parts Remanufacturers Association said in a statement. "This would result in a substantial loss of business for aftermarket service facilities."

In a response to the association, the EPA said, "allowing manufacturers to deny warranty claims solely because the service was performed by an independent service provider is not permitted by the Clean Air Act."

The association had been working with the EPA to gain as much access to information for independent heavy-duty service providers as possible. However, when the regulation was published, the organization found a provision that was not previously discussed.

The association wrote a letter to the EPA regarding the provision, in which Michael Conlon, general counsel, said the language was overbroad, violated the Clean Air Act and needed to be removed from the regulation.

The EPA responded with the following statement, "Therefore, we want to clarify that this provision does not allow manufacturers to deny warranty claims or otherwise limit their obligations with respect to a heavy-duty engine (1) because emission-related service and repair of that engine was performed by an independent service provider; (2) because emission-related service and repair of the engine was performed by an independent service provider using the manufacturer's tools; or (3) because emission-related service and repair of that engine was performed by an independent service provider using third party tools."

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