The Motor car has developed very rapidly in the last 20 years. The key changes have been the introduction of computerization into the vehicle. This has allowed major improvements both by the manufacturers when the vehicle is designed and assembled and secondly in such areas as in engine reliability. Specifically engine tuning is not now a function performed in a garage as part of routine servicing. The engine is kept in tune by its own onboard computers (ECU’s).
Only when these units malfunction or their associated sensors fail do problems arise. A similar improvement in oil technology has allowed manufacturers to extend service intervals from 5000-6000 miles right up to 20,000 miles in some cases. We have also seen the introduction of variable servicing intervals where the manufacturer uses the onboard computer to calculate when a service is due based on vehicle use.
Problems with modern vehicle servicing
Because vehicle reliability is so much better now than 20-30 years ago many owners simply overlook the need to check a vehicle on a regular basis. Vehicles are also a lot quieter now with better suspension systems, and better road noise insulation through quieter tyres, better bushing between the body and the sub-frames/suspension. Similarly because most servicing schedules by manufacturers have moved to a visual based inspection process, problems can develop unnoticed by the owner. The other major problem with long service intervals is Engine Sludge caused in part by long service intervals. see our section on Oil and Engines.
NEW Car less than 3 Years old
Don’t I have to take my new car to the Dealer to get it serviced to keep my Warranty ?
– No See the ruling in 2004 manufacturers cannot avoid honoring a warranty on a new car simply because the vehicle has not been serviced at the franchise. You must ensure that :
– The vehicle is serviced in accordance with the manufacturers service intervals
– Genuine parts are fitted. If you want to take advantage of lower service costs of an independent garage just let us know when you book in the vehicle that the vehicle is still inside the 3 year warranty period and we will gladly fit manufacturers parts versus original equipment parts. This can save more than half the invoice cost on the labour rate and could easily save you £200 + without affecting your warranty. For more information read an extract from the OFT