ShareBack to blog
How do I find a cheap car service for my car? Much like dental check-ups, getting your car serviced is, without a doubt, a necessary evil. You may not want to spend the money on a service and on the fixes that your car might need but if you don’t, you might be driving around an unsafe car or a car that could break down and put you at risk. Not to mention, not having a full service history can damage the car’s resale value too.
So, what do you do? There are ways of finding a cheap car service that can save you a lot of time, money and hassle. We’ve been digging around to get the very best advice on finding a cheap car service, so you don’t have to. But before we get into that, we thought we’d answer a few car service FAQs. Because, if you know what you’re talking about, you’re less likely to be taken for a ride.
Cheap Car Service FAQs
How often should my car be serviced?
To keep your car in tip-top condition, it should be serviced every year. That’s when the technicians will spot any problems cropping up, and also how you keep your car at its most valuable when it comes to reselling.
According to KwikFit, almost half of all used-car buyers will completely ignore a car without the full service history. Not only that, but studies have found that a full service history can add 23% to the value of your car when it comes to selling it.
However, there are also a few milestones that need you to get your car serviced, and most of these are related to age or how far you’ve travelled. You’ll find these in your car manual.
How much does a car service cost?
Of course, the cost of a service varies from garage to garage. The Money Advice Service advises that the average service should cost £125. But you can find a cheap car service if you shop around a bit. More on this later…
Should I bother getting my car serviced if I’m not going to sell it?
This is an interesting question. Of course, it depends on whether you’re planning on buying a new car soon or not, but the answer is still, yes (probably).
You see, getting your car serviced each year keeps it in the best condition it can be in. That means that the garage is more likely to catch problems early (when they’re much cheaper to fix) than when things go wrong (when things are much more expensive to fix).
Not to mention, a well-maintained car also far more fuel-efficient, so you’ll save yourself a pretty penny on petrol too.
Is there anything I can do to keep the cost of service down?
There are a few things you can do to make sure you get a cheap car service – namely, maintaining your car in a few different ways: checking the tyres, checking the oil, keeping an eye on the dashboard and being wary of the cambelt.
Checking the tyres:
Driving around on semi-flat tyres isn’t good for your car at all. Not only will you wear your tyres out much quicker (tyres can cost around £80 a pop) and use up far more fuel, but you can also risk a blow-out and crash or putting your car’s tracking out of line – both of which are expensive jobs to fix.
Checking the oil:
Oil is absolutely essential to keeping your engine running nicely. That means that changing it every three months or so is a great way of keeping your car in tip-top condition.
Keep an eye on the dashboard:
Having a light flash on the dashboard can be a pain, but they’re a great way to get ahead of the problem and save yourself money.
A warning light on the dash can indicate a problem with your engine, oil or tyre pressure. The easiest way to find out is to check the light in your owner’s manual. This’ll tell you what’s wrong and how to fix it before it becomes a real problem.
Change the cambelt:
Although the mileage varies from car to car, it’s recommended that you have your cambelt changed every 70,000 miles or so.
The cambelt – or timing belt – in a nutshell, controls the way your engine works. It makes sure that the valves are opening and closing in time to ensure correct combustion in the engine.
But, like most parts of the car that are constantly used, it wears out. If you catch it before it wears out (usually around the 70,000-mile mark, like we said) then you only have to pay for a replacement, which usually comes in at less than £300.
If you wait for it to break, it can snap and wreck your engine within in seconds. The cost of repairing that is far, far more than the cambelt replacement.
Now, onto finding a cheap car service…
The first tip for finding a cheap car service is to find a local, independent garage rather than a dealership. Not only are they usually cheaper, but they’re normally more focused on providing a great customer service.
According to The Money Advice Service:
“With higher overheads and staff commission, dealerships are nearly always a more expensive choice for servicing and repairs than independent garages. The average rate for franchised dealers is £92.11 per hour, while independent garages typically charge £63.56.”
However, finding the cheapest garage for your cheap car service can involve lots of driving around to different garages getting quotes and estimates (and, of course, negotiation). If you go down this route, make sure that you get a breakdown of all of the costs (including VAT and parts) to accurately compare garages. And don’t forget to factor in your gut feeling about the garages too – sometimes it’s worth paying a little more for a garage that you trust than taking a chance on a cheaper, less trustworthy garage.
If that doesn’t appeal to you, try Who Can Fix My Car
WhoCanFixMyCar.com brings finding a cheap car service into the 21st Century by letting you enter your registration and postcode and find quotes from local dealers and independent garages. You can even find deals for services and MOTs too, if you’re looking to get everything done in one go.
So there you have it – a quick and easy guide to finding a cheap car service (and keeping the costs of the service down). If you’re looking for a new car, wondering how to maintain your current car or thinking about finding cheap insurance, we’ve written lots of car-related posts over on our blog. Why not check them out?
- Author The Bamboo Team
- Posted 3 August 2018