As car owners we all appreciate what is involved with the upkeep and associated costs of running a car. It is not something that is cheap, and definitely something that is not to be taken lightly or something that we want to cause us extra stress and problems. We all want important appointments like car services and MOT’s to run smoothly and expect the up-most care and attention to be given by the businesses that are handling our vehicle.
Part of maintaining a car is to have it regularly serviced and to get its MOT certificate renewed annually. A service can ensure the general health of the vehicle is in order and things like oil level, tyre pressure and remaining brake pad allowance is within the accepted guidelines, furthermore any emerging or serious faults can be found which could cause damage to the car if left unattended. Recently in the news, there have been several reports of main dealers failing to find faults with customer’s vehicles which have caused further complications.
Main Dealer vs Independent Garage
When choosing who to service your car with, you can either go to a main dealer, or an independent garage. The choice is entirely up to you and there is no obligation to choose either (Unless stated under terms and conditions of warranty for example). There are several factors to consider when choosing, but it is easy to see why using an Independent garage is beneficial;
– Smaller customer base means more time will be spent on your vehicle.
– Each customer is important to an Independent so extra care will be taken to retain your custom.
– Independents have a wide range of suppliers so will be able to source parts quicker.
– You can find an independent garage that is local and convenient to your location.
– You will often pay less at an independent garage for the exact same service at a main dealer.
Now while main dealers may be slightly more appropriate to use for a new car that is still under manufactures warranty, you can clearly see the benefits of servicing your car with your local and trusted garage. Some independent dealers are also authorised to perform warranty checks on your car, so it pays to look around.
Why main dealers can let you down
As stated in the opening paragraph, there has been instances reported recently in the news where a main dealer has let their customer down and provided an insufficient diagnosis. This could mean that they have missed a serious fault with the vehicle, or even just missed simple things like topping the oil up or checking the brake fluid properly for example. Mistakes like this can be costly and also knock people’s confidence in main dealers.
So why does it happen? Who knows why this happens, maybe the dealers haven’t sufficiently trained their staff! But after a survey or motorists it was found that a large number of them found the dealers were not picking up faults in their vehicles that other independent dealers easily identified.