When organising a car service, it's important that you establish what the service includes.
Some garages will change only your oil filter, others will carry out a full service. A good garage will follow a service checklist as a confirmation of a job well done..
Does your car need a service?
Most modern cars only needs a service once a year, but older cars require a service once every six months. The manufacturer's service handbook will set what is best for your car. The type of service you need will also be affected by how you use your car. For example, lots of short journeys where the engine does not have a chance to warm up properly will probably mean more frequent oil and filter changes.
Running faults and repairs
Ask to speak to a mechanic or a technician about the problem. Explain the problem in as much detail as you can. If you can, include when the problem occurs, for example only when the engine is cold, or after the vehicle has been left standing.
Do I need to take my car to a main dealer for its service?
European Commission rules on car block exemption came into full effect in October 2003. This new ruling allows independent garages the same access to technical information on your car from the manufacturer, and more importantly, it means you do not need to go back to a franchise dealer to retain warranty cover.
What is the difference between an Interim Service and a Full Service?
A Full Service is ideal for an annual maintenance programme for your car and recommended every 12,000 miles or 12 months – whichever is sooner. Some manufacturers may recommend more frequent checks. Interim Servicing is ideal for vehicles used for short, mainly urban journeys or for those who wish to service vehicles doing very high mileage more regularly. An Interim Service every 6,000 miles or 6 months helps keep your car safe and roadworthy between full services.