Have you ever wondered what is included in a car service? Depending on the service history of the car and it’s age, each service can vary in costs and work involved. Here at MCM Garage we thought it was sensible to give you detailed information regarding car servicing routines and what you should expect as a car owner during a service.
How frequently should you service your car?
Most customers will want to keep their manufacturer’s car handbook stamped at regular intervals, not only to keep their guarantee (you don’t need to go to main dealers either to keep your service history and warranty intact) but to also keep it maintained and improve re-sale value. Knowing a car is well maintained makes it more desirable for a second-hand purchase. There are two service intervals usually, the interim service which is every 6 months or 6,000 miles and then a full service usually after 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes sooner.
So what is included in a car service?
To break down what is included in a full car service, we’ve broken it down into these sections:
- Checking the lights
- Checking brakes
- Wear on tyres
- Assessing fluid levels
- Electrical system checks
- Instrument checks
- Interior inspection
- Engine component assessments
- Assessing windscreen for damage and safety
- Checks on wheels
- Road test of car
As you can see this is a comprehensive list which means plenty of time is taken to inspect your car during a service. After all, a service can help keep your car running smoothly and safely.
The details of a car service
Now we have a synopsis of the car service checks, we’ll go through in further detail what to expect with each check:
Your car’s lights inside and outside of the car are tested to make sure they all work effectively. Any dimmed lights or faulty ones will be replaced. All types of lights are tested, including fog, hazards, indication and registration lights, not forgetting the essential main lights.
Brakes will be tested for safety. A measurement of the performance including any defects and measurements of the brake pads will be noted. Worn parts will be replaced and brake fluid either replaced or topped-up depending on the consistency. Pipes which carry brake fluid will also be checked.
The mechanic will inspect tyres for any visible damage. Tyre treads will also be assessed and if they are under the minimum tread depth or areas are worn more than others, then new tyres may be necessary. Tyre pressures will also be monitored.
There are a variety of fluids running through a car. These vary from engine oil, windscreen fluid, coolant for the radiator and power steering fluid. All of which will be carefully checked to ensure they are clean enough and at the right levels, along with the oil filter being replaced if deemed necessary.
Without your car’s electrics in good working order, many faults can start to appear. This is why the service will check all electrical systems usually with a computer plugged into the car, as modern vehicles can warn of any issues. Assessment of the battery starter motor and alternator will also be carried out.
The dashboard instruments also require inspection. This helps ensure dials like the speedometer, mileage and revolution counter are working correctly. The horn and all dashboard warning lights will be tested, along with the steering and other essential driving components.
Seat belts, mirrors, pedals, handles and locks will also be monitored during the full service, usually at the same time as the instruments being checked within the car. These are still vital parts of your car not only for functionality but for safety.
Every vital part of your engine will be tested and assessed. This can include checks on the exhaust system, clutch, air/fuel filters, transmission, hoses, radiator, pipes and spark plugs. Much like an MOT, the service will also inspect the suspension, shock absorbers, as well as the ball & drive shaft joints, plus the gaiters. Anything wrong with these areas will need repair or replacement.
Damage to the windscreen will be monitored, looking for any chips or cracks which are dangerous. All sets of windows on the vehicle will be monitored for safety and check on the wipers and washers will also be carried out. These are vital for you seeing well on the road in every condition after all.
Despite tyres and brakes being checked, the wheels themselves may need attention to. Wheel balancing and alignment may be required and any bearings within the wheel itself need to be properly assessed, to ensure stable and comfortable movement when driving.
Last of all, once the other checks have been carried out on the car, a brief road test of the vehicle is necessary, to ensure everything is in order.
So there you have a detailed analysis of a full car service. Remember, during the service your garage may indicate certain parts need replacement or fluids should be replaced. These will be an additional cost on your bill once the car has been serviced thoroughly. Due to the unknown wear and tear on the parts of your vehicle, it’s not possible to provide a quote to cover parts and materials before inspection.
We hope you found this information useful. Please remember that if you live in the Bath, Radstock or Midsomer Norton areas of the UK, our team at MCM Garage will happily service any make or model of car, providing you with log book stamps as well. Please get in touch with us today to book your car service, or call us on 01761 415501