Car Service Guide

A car service is where a professional mechanic puts your car through a series of checks and tests. These checks and tests go way beyond the MoT, which really only checks to make sure your car is basically safe and road worthy.

A car service probes deeper into a car's working parts and, if done regularly, will prolong the life of the car and it's parts, save you money, reduce the risk of breaking down and make your car a safer drive.

All cars have a service schedule - filters, fluids, belts, brakes, pads, spark plugs and many other components need to be changed at specific intervals. Check you car manual for your car's specific service schedule.

Not all car services are the same. You may find the garage you take your car to offers different types of car service such as an interim car service, a full service and a major car service. If you take your car to be serviced annually, or if the car you have bought has been serviced regularly, then a full service will service. If your car hasn't been service for over a year then go for a major service.

Be aware that if during the service faults are found or parts are discovered that need replacing it could cost you more money than the stated car service fee. Always instruct the garage to call you before completing any work that will cost more money.

Should you use a local garage or registered dealer? Your car manual will always advise you take your car to be serviced (or for any repair work including an MoT) to a registered local dealer.

Their reasons for this are simple, they claim the dealership will have correctly trained mechanics and only use authorized parts and materials. These claims are no doubt true. However a local garage or, for that matter a national auto centre, is likely to be cheaper than a registered dealer and are just as likely to use properly trained mechanics and use quality parts and materials.

When taking your car to be serviced ask what checks are covered by the service. A full service should include the following: