Nick's Auto Blog

Hello, my name is Nick. This is my new auto blog. Have you ever wondered about how you can improve the look and functioning of your auto? If so you are in the right place. I live in a large house in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia and my house has as many garage parking spots as it does rooms. And believe me, it has a lot of rooms. I like to collect classic cars and then work on them to restore them to their former glory. In doing this, I have learnt lots of cool tricks. I would like to share some of these tricks with you here.

Getting Value for Money from Your Car Service

Automotive Blog

Family budgets are often under pressure these days, and there's a great temptation to save money where possible. That can extend to car servicing, but cutting corners for lower costs can be a dangerous practice.

The Need for Proper Servicing

Regular servicing is the key to having a car that is reliable, safe and performs well. Missing a service can save money in the short-term but can lead to higher costs later as minor problems escalate into major repairs.

Oil changes, for example, need to be made at set intervals, because oil loses its lubricating properties over time, causing engines to seize or degenerate. Similarly, consumables such as tyres and brakes will deteriorate with use and need regular attention.

Cars are complex products that need ongoing care. That's emphasised more by the constant introduction of new technology and longer intervals between services, meaning regular maintenance shouldn't be delayed.

Getting the Best Deal

Given that you should always ensure that servicing is undertaken properly and at regular intervals, the challenge is to get this done at the best possible price without compromising quality. The best way to do this is to shop around to find what's on offer.

Your choice for servicing is generally between a main dealer, an independent garage or a 'fast fix' service. Most people assume that main dealers will always be more expensive than independent garages due to their high overheads, but that's not always the case.

Many main dealers make more money from parts and servicing than they do from the low margins they get from selling cars. So they are keen to get regular income from servicing and will quote competitive prices to achieve this. In many cases, they'll offer packaged car servicing at fixed cost, often when you buy a new car. However, take care that you know what's included in the fixed cost and watch out for unexpected extra charges if you take these on.

In many cases, main dealers may be cheaper for regular servicing work but may be more expensive when replacing brakes and exhausts due to using OEM parts that cost more. So it pays to compare costs for different types of work, not just assume one company is cheaper for everything.

Price Isn't Everything

When arranging your car service, don't just take the cheapest price. Since you rely on your car for work and leisure, a quality repair at a reasonable price should be more important than the lowest cost deal.

The level of overall service may also be a deciding factor, with some companies responding better to enquiries and providing better information than others. Guaranteed work is also important, and some services may offer roadside assistance for a period as part of the deal, which can be a great benefit.


16 November 2015