How much is a car service?

How much is a car service? 

Learn how to stay on the road for less

A healthy vehicle means you spend more time on the road and less time in the garage. But how much is servicing your car really going to set you back? Let’s learn more about how you can maintain your car as cheaply and efficiently as possible.

What affects the cost of a car service?

There isn’t one set cost for getting your car serviced, unlike MOTs whose cost tends to be pretty standard across vehicles of the same class. The amount you’ll pay for a service varies depending on factors like:

• Your car’s make, model, size, and age
• The garage carrying out the work (independent garages might be cheaper, but make sure they’re credible)
• How many miles your car has clocked up
• Any needed repairs that the service identifies
• Replacement parts, if any are necessary
• Your location

Today, we’re talking about the kind of regular cars driven by most UK motorists. The cost of servicing an electric car could be lower since they have fewer mechanical parts. Likewise, motorbikes, camper vans, minibuses, and other types of vehicles will come with their own servicing costs. Be sure to ask your chosen garage exactly what you’re getting for your money.

What’s involved in a car service?

A car service might take anywhere from half an hour to three or four hours, depending on how detailed it is. There are three types of car service; interim, full, and major. The more in-depth they go, the more you can expect to pay.

How much does an interim car service cost?

An interim service might cost you about £75-£125. If the engineer discovers any car parts in need of replacing before you can drive away safely, those will need to be paid for on top of the service itself.

Big garage chains should be able to offer you a standard price for an interim service. The cost to get it done at a smaller independent garage will be very different from one to the next. Check online for positive reviews to make sure cheaper garages are offering a credible service.

Interim services are cheapest common type, only intended for high-mileage drivers who regularly go 20,000 miles per year or more. If that applies to you, budget for an interim service every six months. 

This type of service carries out 50 checks, including:

• Clutch, steering, tyre, and brake inspections
• Oil and oil filter replacements
• Checking windscreen wipers, lights, and other electrics
• Lubricating the major moving parts of the car
• Filling up engine and brake fluids, checking for fluid leaks
• A close visual inspection of the car

How much does a full car service cost?

For a full service, expect to pay about £150 or more. Again, prices will vary between independent garages and big garage chains. You’ll also need to pay for any replacement parts if necessary.

This type of service goes into greater detail and takes a fair while longer than an interim service. Most regular drivers, those who rack up about 12,000 miles every year, should budget for a full service every 12 months.

The full service consists of up to around 75 checks, including everything from the interim service plus:

• Replacing the spark plugs, fuel filter, and air filter
• Deeper inspection of the car’s AC system and electrics
• Coolant hose and radiator testing
• Close testing of the wheel bearings, shock absorbers, and brakes

How much does a major car service cost?

It could cost you anywhere between £250-£400 (plus parts if needed) for a major service. This is the most detailed type of service commonly available to regular drivers. Depending on how much use you make of your car, you should plan for a major service every two to three years. A major service replaces the car’s full service for that year, you won’t need to pay for both.

Major services are rare but pricey. That’s because this type of service replaces certain bits in your car regardless of their condition. Expect to get all new brake fluid and a fresh cabin filter as part of a major service, alongside everything you’d expect from a full service.

Do you have to pay for a car service?

You’ll notice that a car service can be significantly more expensive than an MOT, which rarely tops £55 for a standard Class 4 car. An MOT is a legal requirement, while a car service is not. 

You technically don’t have to pay to service your car at all if you don’t want to, but that’s not the wisest decision.

Yes, skipping a car service will save you a bit of money in the short term. But running your car to death until you break down will almost certainly be way more expensive, not to mention inconvenient. If you’re involved in an accident due to failing to look after your car, your insurance premiums could go up.

In other words, maintaining your car will save you time, hassle, and money in the long run. There are ways to minimise the impact on your pocket and avoid any nasty surprises if you plan ahead.

Spreading the cost with a car servicing plan

With a fixed-price car service plan, you can spread the cost of maintaining your vehicle over a pre-agreed term. You’ll make monthly payments; unlike regular services these often include the price of any parts you may need replacing as part of a service.

There are a number of benefits to approaching car servicing in this way:

• Peace of mind comes from knowing exactly how much you’re paying
• Your car enjoys optimal protection, securing its resale value
• Knowing the exact date of your next service helps you plan your time

The exact cost of your car’s service plan will depend on its type, age, and the garage doing the work. As with a regular service, look online for positive reviews to make sure you can trust your first choice of engineer.

Get your car serviced at a garage near you

Proactively taking good care of your car nets you a host of long-running benefits. Fewer nasty surprises and the highest possible resale value are only the beginning.

We’ve helped thousands of UK drivers get that peace of mind by maintaining their cars in top condition. Take a look and see for yourself.

Book a car service from Lookers today

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