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Dealer detect aftermarket tune

This is a discussion on Dealer detect aftermarket tune within the Mustang GT350 Performance forums, part of the Mustang GT350 Garage category; I need some advice. I recently purchased a 2017 with 7000 miles that had never been back to the dealer for repairs. I spoke with ...

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  • 1 Post By DewmsEleanor

Thread: Dealer detect aftermarket tune

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    Dealer detect aftermarket tune

    I need some advice. I recently purchased a 2017 with 7000 miles that had never been back to the dealer for repairs. I spoke with the previous owner and she told me that they had a Livernois tune on the car but flashed it back to stock before they traded it in. My question is if the dealer can detect the fact that a tune was done (although I am running the stock tune) and deny my warranty should I need it.

    Thanks

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    Some one will know for sure but I know at the GM dealership I have friends at and hang out have always told me if a car ever gets a tune and puts it back to as before they can still tell and will void the warranty.

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    Member DewmsEleanor's Avatar
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    If I had to guess without talking to anyone that works at the dealer, it would be one of two scenarios:

    1. The flash/programming of the ECU wipes the ROM completely, and so it looks like a fresh install, at which point you would be in the clear when you flash back.

    2. There are logs in the ECU that track any changes made to it.

    As a computer engineer, I would take a guess and say Ford isn't stupid. It's 2018. They probably have all sorts of safeguards to get around having to pay out a warranty, just like insurance companies. In retrospect, even above in situation 1, they may have a hash or encryption applied to the ECU, at which point, unless you know the master key from Ford to decrypt it, they will know.

    And with this car, I would almost guess it is a certainty they locked down change control on the ECU's.

    EDIT:
    It sounds like they traded it in to the dealer? If the dealer sells it to you, with a warranty at the time of sale, then I would consider you in the clear (although if this is the case, I would document the sale in whatever way you can). They should KNOW if it was tuned. And if they knew and didn't disclose that to you, I would think legally it is on them to still honor the warranty, regardless if you knew it was tuned or not (don't let them know you know ).
    Last edited by DewmsEleanor; 10-30-2018 at 02:17 PM. Reason: Add more
    JimT likes this.

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    If that would be the case I assume the warranty would only be good at that dealership if they knew and you can prove it. That might not be a good thing if you were to be some distance away and broke down. Hopefully it all works out ok for you.

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    The days of adding a tune then talking it off before service is over. The dealers can easily see if you did any changes, even if you flash it back to stock. Flags get set. They might not be able to see the new tune..but they will know you did something. Tuners lie, a factory with hundreds or thousands of engineers.....can beat any tuner with a four engineers on staff. So when they say its not detectable, that's a lie. Tuners merely reverse engineer the stock CPU code and then figure out how to write their own code. Factories are smart now and will keep logs in non-volatile memory that cant be over written.

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    You could always buy a second ECM & swap it out during warranty.
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    ECM is probably imprinted with the VIN, and only a dealer can install a new ECU and get it coded properly. Chances are if you buy a new ECU and plug it in, it wont work. Audi got around this by sealing the ECU box with propriety rivets that you had to grind off to get to the ECU. If they say you did that, warranty voided.

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