Finding The Right Garage For Your Car Service
With most gadgets and machines these days, service is probably the last thing on our minds. Most of the gadgets that we use today are maintenance free and repairs cost more than replacement.
Until cars become like that, there is no escape from regular maintenance and periodic service. Finding a dependable garage is the key to hassle free car service. It is as important as finding a good doctor.
Your Choice Of Garage Can Make A Huge Difference
There are many types of garages.
Manufacturers always recommend the dealer garage for servicing. They provide good service, but are expensive. Besides high labour and spare costs, they tend to favour replacements even when economical repairs are possible. You will usually end up paying a lot more with no additional benefit.
Specialist garages are dependable and offer excellent service. Like the dealer garages, they have the right equipment and trained people. They are cheaper than the dealer. Like the dealer garage, you will get warranty on repairs as well as updates in your service history. Specialist garages are good places to get your car serviced. You will get comfortable and economical service.
Large General Garages
Many large garages are well equipped and have trained people. Although they are not specialists, you can expect good service. The cost will be about the same as that of a specialist garage, but they may not have the necessary equipment and manufacturer support. This can affect their ability to carry out all types of diagnostics or repairs.
The main attraction of small garages is the price. Other than that, you can’t really expect much. Most of them won’t have the right diagnostic equipment or experienced technicians to service high-end vehicles. Servicing is usually just limited to oil changes and maybe a brief check to see that the basics are working. Sometimes, this cheap service can turn expensive due to faulty repairs, bad spares, cheap consumables and warranty problems. You will also lose the benefit of a good service history.
What To Look For In A Good Garage
Check the following before you entrust your vehicle to a garage.
a) Type of garage Consider only full-service garages for periodic service. Avoid oil-change shops unless you are clear that it is the only thing you need. A full-service auto shop has the basic equipment and technical knowledge to do detailed checks. They are also likely to maintain service records and will know what happened during previous services.
b) How long have they been in business?
Established garages are more likely to give you good service. You should also look for industry certifications. This will tell you that the garage adheres to industry standards for quality.
c) Technical expertise
Look for technical expertise for the brand of car you own. Different brands have different service schedules and requirements. Each one has its own set of specialised tools, equipment, software and knowledge.
Using the wrong spares or not following the manufacturer’s service schedules may void your warranty. Check what type of spares the garage is using. Good garages will offer a warranty for their repairs.
The garage you choose should be convenient. Will they pick your car and return it after service? If not, check if they offer a shuttle service or have a comfortable waiting area with basic amenities. Most good garages have a viewing area from where customers can watch their vehicles being serviced.
f) Are they focussing on prevention rather than repairs?
Check if the garage follows service guidelines specified by the manufacturer. Preventive maintenance is essential to maintain performance, ensure safety and maximise the lifespan of your vehicle. A good garage will focus on preventive maintenance and basic checks even if you don’t report any problem.
g) Service record update
Check if the garage will stamp your service book and update the digital service history. This is important to preserve the value of your vehicle.
Considering that you don’t know much about your vehicle, you are going to rely on the advice of experts at the garage. Unfortunately, some garages recommend unnecessary repairs. Some charge you for spares that were not replaced or for work that was not carried out.
In some garages, the technicians are under incentive schemes, which may encourage them to recommend unnecessary work. Check the experience of past customers. You can also look at online reviews, but their authenticity is always in doubt. The best way to ensure that you won’t be taken on a ride is to ask an expert on car service that is familiar with the garage being considered.
If you are looking for a professional car service at a lower cost, we can help you find the right garage. We have already done the spadework and established a network of reliable and trustworthy garages. Get in touch with us and we will connect you to the right garage. You will get top-class service at affordable rates. Just complete the simple form at the top of this page.
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A small sample of our thousands of satisfied customers.
Top service, knew straight away what the problem was. Had it back next day which was great, glad I’ve found a garage I can use in the future would defiantly recommend. Even gave my car a wash.Jack Walker
Had my car service and mot with Bury branch. Excellent service kept me posted with everything they were doing. Professional, friendly and helpful definitely recommend them. Thanks.Anne
Great people to deal with. Trusted with my family’s cars for many many years. Great service, go the extra mile. Thoroughly recommend for anyone looking for work on their car whatever the marque.Alan Rait
Just a quick line, I have finally found a garage where I have complete confidence. Professional and informative, Lisa and Mike are a pleasure to deal with. Thank you.Michael