So you may be aware that car manufacturers now offer ‘extended service intervals’.
While traditionally the motor mechanic industry has recommended that a car is serviced every 6 months or 10,000km (whichever happens first), manufacturers now are providing 12 month car servicing schedules as a way to create value for the customer.
It isn’t hard to see why it is an attractive proposition for new car buyers. On top of the cost of the car there is rego, stamp duty and the prospect of 2 services within a 12 month period. The easy solution is for the manufacturer to package all of that into the cost of the car, and create a 12 month servicing schedule.
Now that is a great deal…no huge up front costs and a car that seems to be capable of driving and driving and driving.
Let’s examine the potential issues with servicing your car once every 12 months:
- At a recommendation of 20,000km or 12 months, a car that is driven in typical city conditions with a great deal of stopping and starting, can develop a build up of oil sludge in the engine. Oil sludge sticks to your engine parts and blocks oil galleries preventing the normal flow through the engine. Think of this as clogged arteries, pretty soon your car will have a heart attack or stroke.
- Problems with components may start as early as 2-3, months, the repercussions of waiting another 9-10 months to identify the problem may result in a large repair bill for something that may have been preventable 6 months earlier.
- Certain elements such as tyre pressure and wheel alignment can have an impact on your ability to drive car safety. If these aren’t being checked until the scheduled 12-month service, you could be endangering your safety and that of your passengers.
- Furthermore, mechanical failure can have devastating consequences, especially if a critical part of the braking, steering or suspension is involved. Regular car servicing can help to identify issues early to avoid disasters
- Components in cars that fail, often do so 12 months from the date of purchase. The danger there is that if you service just outside of the warranty period and an expensive component requires repair or replacement, you are up for the whole bill. Imagine if you knew there was an issue months earlier and were able to claim on the warranty.
Servicing your car every 6 months or 10,000km can save you bucket load of money in the long run. It has a positive impact on the safety of your car, as well as preserving your car’s life and value, meaning when you go to sell, you don’t need to ‘give it away’.
Regular servicing also breaks costs down into small amounts, meaning you do not get hit with one massive bill at the end of your 12 months, plus the potential of being out of warranty and needing to pay for the cost of a component repair or replacement.
Our recommendation is to find a car mechanic you like and trust and get their advice. We guarantee that any independent repairer will tell you the same. Remember also that even with new cars, you do not need to have them serviced by the manufacturer to keep your warranty valid. All good independent repairers are qualified to service and repair your vehicle and stamp your logbook to keep your warranty valid.