Is servicing required? And is it worth paying for?

Is servicing required? And is it worth paying for?

Owning and running a car is expensive, with lease payments, insurance, road tax and more it seems the costs are never ending. Costly servicing may seem a step too far, but in this article, we’ll explain why it doesn’t make sense to skip servicing intervals.  

We’ve listed and explained 5 reasons to maintain regular servicing, at least to your vehicle manufacturer's specification: 

Avoid expensive repair bills 

Skipping servicing is a false economy, the parts replaced at services are either parts that are consumed over time or parts that reduce wear to your engine/vehicle. 

An example of the first case is brake pads, ignoring the obvious safety concerns, when these wear away the metal part of the pad will start to contact the disc. This almost always results in needing new discs, as well as pads.  

In some cases where the metal-on-metal contact has caused severe overheating, the caliper may well be damaged also. It just makes sense to replace the cheapest part (the pads) as soon as it’s required, or preferably before. 

Oil changes are one of the most commonly missed out service items, because 99% of the time, the engine will show no signs of ill effects for thousands of miles. However, the engine oil does deteriorate and considering it's the oil’s job to prevent undue wear on the major engine components, it pays to replace it often.  

Failed main bearings due to poor oil, or blocked oil pumps due to contaminants in the oil will both result in complete failure of the engine. Only a full rebuild or new engine will fix these issues, at a cost of at least £3,000 on most vehicles. 

Prevent accidents 

The previous example is a perfect one again, which shows how important service items are. Worn brake pads don’t stop the car as effectively as newer ones, when the pads wear down to the metal, the braking force will be less than half what it should be. 

What’s more, if you’re involved in an accident with parts of your car in this condition, there will be serious consequences, including penalty points and fines. 

Predict and plan for future repairs 

When you take your car to be serviced, the mechanic will look over all the major components, as well as take it for a test drive. Any faults that are starting to develop but have either not yet become apparent from the driver's seat, or to an untrained eye, will be detected.  

Repairing faults before they cause the car to be unusable affords cost savings in both arrangements for alternative transport, and the outright cost of fixing the car. With the ability to shop around for better prices on parts and labour allowing further cost savings.  

Improve your car's resale value 

Most cars are a depreciating asset, that is their value decreases with time. There’s really no way to avoid this, short of only driving classic or special vehicles that become desirable by collectors.  

There are a few ways to reduce the impact of depreciation, these all boil down to increasing or maintaining the desirability of the car. Things such as keeping the mileage low, and not damaging the paintwork are often difficult to guarantee. 

Keeping up with servicing however is guaranteed to increase the resale value of your car. Particularly if you take the car to a dealer or specialist garage, this will show the new owner you’ve cared for the car, and that it’s less likely to cause them problems, hence increasing the value. 

Required by law 

We’ve already touched on the scenario of having a collision due to worn-out brakes, but legality is much deeper than this.  

Tyres must have over 1.5mm of tread depth to be legal on the road. A full service will check tread depth and give you a report, allowing you to plan when the tyres will need changing, allowing you to avoid getting 3 points and a £2,500 fine, and that’s per tyre! 

Working windscreen wipers and lights are another area that is required by law, and will be picked up on a service.  

It’ll help the planet 

Petrol engines need air, fuel and a spark to run, all three systems have serviceable components that directly affect how efficient the combustion is.  

Incoming air is filtered to stop debris from entering the engine, after a certain amount of miles, the filter will become clogged and start to restrict the flow of air, causing poor running and increased consumption. 

Spark plugs provide an ignition source for the air and fuel mixture, but they have internal components that break down with the engine's age and heat. A strong spark provides better combustion, resulting in less unburnt fuel exiting the exhaust, and less fuel required to produce the same amount of power. 

And finally, the fuel is filtered in the same way the incoming air is, a clogged and dirty fuel filter will introduce contaminants causing poor running. If the filter is left unchanged for too long, the engine will fail to run at all. 

These points all reduce emissions and save fuel and therefore money.  

How regular servicing can help your wallet

Split the cost of servicing and repairs into interest-free monthly payments, enter your reg and postcode to find a car repair finance Bumper partner near you.

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