Maintenance is an essential part of car ownership to keep your vehicle running at its best. Where you take your car for service can play a critical role in the level and length of time of your vehicle’s performance. While the mechanic at a local garage may sometimes be the cheaper option, the many benefits of using a dealership’s specially trained technicians can help save you money in the long run by keeping your car running better and longer.
Dealerships Employ Specialists
A dealership’s technicians are specially trained by your vehicle’s manufacturer to work specifically on your make and model. In addition to their initial training, these specialists also participate in ongoing learning programs that maintain and grow their expertise in the latest technologies and design advances. While the mechanic at your local garage may have an Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification—which is less specialized than a manufacturer’s training but can still be very effective—his expertise cannot match the intimate knowledge that the dealership’s specialist will have about your car. Additionally, even if a local mechanic has been trained well, he will still not be privy to new information about updates that is given to dealerships and their employees. Furthermore, because not every local mechanic receives an AEC, your car may be in less experienced hands if serviced at a local garage.
Knowing Your Car’s History Helps Dealerships Service It More Effectively
It is true that taking your car to the local garage will help you build a relationship with your mechanic, which can help him anticipate problems that your vehicle may experience down the road. However, servicing your vehicle regularly at the dealership gives its specialists specific data on the history of your vehicle, which helps them make evidence-based predictions about future potential issues and fix them before they become problems. Having such a wealth of data helps them to avoid the potentially inaccurate diagnostics and conflicting recommendations typical of local garages.
Dealerships Do Not Charge for Work Done on Warranty
If your car is covered by the manufacturers or an extended warranty, a dealership will honor it free of charge. In contrast, a local garage usually charges a deductible for warranty repairs, and may also charge for labor. In addition, your dealership will likely have the needed parts for your vehicle right on the premises, whereas a local garage will likely need to order them, which could cost you time and money for shipping charges.
Dealership Specialists Use Original Equipment
When dealership technicians have to replace a part in your car, they will use the original parts that were manufactured specifically for your make and model. While this can cost more than non-original parts from a local garage if your car is no longer under warranty, it will also ensure that your car has the best parts for its optimum performance. This is because original parts must pass strict quality control tests by the manufacturer and independent industry panels before they are approved for use.