When you consider that your car is one of your most valuable assets and also one of your most essential tools, it makes perfect sense that you think carefully about which garage you should trust with your prized possession when it comes to service time. Here is our definitive guide that gives you some tips on how to choose the perfect fit for you.
Car Servicing - Homework Time
It pays to do your research before committing to one particular garage. An internet search to locate your local garages is usually a good start, to ensure that you don't have to travel too far. Look for a range of local garages, your nearest independent specialist for your make of car, and your franchised dealer. A lot of garages now offer fixed price servicing, to help you directly compare prices. For those who don't, make a few phone calls to collect some quotes tailored to your car. This will help you put together a shortlist of potential car servicing garages.
The Hallmarks of a good dealer
Choosing the right garage is more than just comparing prices. Once you have your quotes, think about what you're getting for your money - don't just assume that the cheapest is poorest, and the most expensive is the best. Are there hidden extras that aren't in the quote, or is it a fixed price? Is the quote itemised so you know exactly what you're getting for your money? Does the dealership use manufacturer approved parts and service your car to manufacturer schedules? (If your car is still within warranty this part is essential to avoid voiding your warranty). Are the technicians fully trained and qualified to high standards? Does the car dealership offer you a courtesy car, car rental or a collection and delivery service, or a comfortable waiting room with tea and coffee facilities?
Read the Reviews
Most garages now have an online footprint of customer testimonials, in the form of reviews. Online review sites such as Google and TrustPilot contain a wealth of information from real customers of the experience they had from their garage. These reviews will give you a good measure of the dealer you're thinking of doing business with, and it is worth paying attention if a pattern of disgruntled customers and negative reviews appear. At Thame Cars, we're very proud to have five stars on TrustPilot - check out our car dealership and servicing reviews here.
Visit the Dealer
Once your homework identifies the right dealer, it's well worth popping in to see them, to get a feel for the garage before committing to booking your car servicing. Consider how you're welcomed by the service advisors, how clean and tidy the waiting area is and what facilities are available there, such as WiFi, newspapers and refreshments to make you comfortable while you wait. If you can see the workshop, it's worth noting how clean and tidy the workshop is too. A well-kept dealership is usually a good sign that they will treat your car well while it's in your care.
What can Thame Cars do for you?
At Thame Cars, our team have already thought about all these things, and we have tailored our business to make sure that the service we provide is as per our motto: Simple, Convenient, Safe and Happy. We have a comfortable waiting area with free fruit and hot drinks while you wait for your car to be ready. We provide quotes with no hidden extras, and discuss any identified extra work with you before going ahead with it. Your car is serviced using genuine parts and to manufacturer approved standards, ensuring that your manufacturer's warranty stands. We offer a free pick-up and drop-off service within a 10-mile radius for either you or your car, or if you still need transport to keep you on the road while your car is with us, we offer an exclusive 50% off van and car hire with a range of vehicles available to suit your needs.
Hopefully this guide has given you some useful tips on how to tell the quality of a car dealership. A good garage can mean the difference between a great customer service experience and many miles of happy motoring, or a miserable cloud of steam sitting at the side of the road. If you'd like to know any more about our services at Thame Cars, do pop in and see us or view our website service page.