Just like your body needs regular medical check-ups to monitor your health level, you car will also have to go through several checks and services over its lifetime. Here is our guide to understand better how, when and where to service your car.
The oil and filter service
With this service, the oil as well as the oil filter, which are some of the most important parts for the car to run efficiently, will be changed. In addition, other points on the vehicle are usually checked during this service, such as the brakes fluid, windscreen wash, power steering fluid or anti-freeze coolant when applicable. Some service centers may also check tires and battery condition as part of the package.
The intermediate, or interim, service
This service will look at other parts and areas of the vehicles, in addition to those checked in the oil and filter service. These parts can include the brakes, steering, suspension, shock absorbers and fluids used in other mechanical parts of the engine or vehicle. Up to 30 check-points can be covered in this service.
The full, or major, service
In addition to the items checked in the previous two services, this one will go further into depth by looking at critical mechanical part and areas of the car such as: the wheel alignment, the bearings, the breaks, the fuel filters, the spark plugs or the belts. Some parts will not only be checked but also replaced as they will come closer to their maximum recommended life expectancy. Up to 50 points can be covered in this service.
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How often do I need to service my car ?
The service frequency will be defined by the manufacturer. This information will be found in the service booklet delivered with the car. Frequency can highly vary depending on manufacturers. Asian cars tend to need servicing more regularly and as often as every 5000 kms, while German cars would only need it every 15,000 kms.
Where should I service my car ?
If you purchased a new car, it is then highly recommended to service it at the dealership. Most of the brands now offer free servicing contracts, for up to 3 years, or attractive service packages. Remember, your car warranty may also be void if it was not serviced by the dealer.
If you are driving a second hand car, not under a warranty scheme anymore, you may conduct the oil and filter service or intermediate service at any quick service center that can be found mostly at petrol station locations. However for the major service, it is highly recommended to visit the dealership or a full-fledged independent garage or brand specialist.