Service Levels - What you should know
As a car owner, keeping your vehicle in top-notch condition is essential for its longevity and smooth performance.
Regular car servicing is an important aspect of maintaining your vehicle, and there are different types of services that your car may require depending on its age, mileage and condition.
In this article, we will discuss the three most common types of car servicing: interim, minor and major, and what each service entails.
In this article
- What is a Car Service?
- What's Included in an Interim Service?
- What's Included in a Minor Service?
- What's Included in a Major Service?
- The Importance of Regular Car Servicing
- Understanding Different Types of Car Service
- Benefits of Each Type of Car Service
- How Often Should You Service Your Car?
- What to Expect During a Car Service
- Factors That Affect the Cost of Car Service
What's Included in an interim service?
- Oil and Filter Change
- Visual Check
- Top-up Fluids
- Brake Check
- Steering Check
- Suspension Check
An oil and filter change is a routine maintenance task that is essential for the health and longevity of your car's engine. During an oil and filter change, the old oil is drained from the engine and replaced with fresh oil, while the oil filter is also replaced.
The process typically involves the following steps:
Draining the Old Oil
The mechanic will drain the old oil from the engine by removing the drain plug located on the bottom of the oil pan.
Replacing the Oil Filter
The mechanic will remove the old oil filter and replace it with a new one. The oil filter is responsible for filtering out any contaminants in the oil, which can cause damage to the engine if left unchecked.
Refilling with Fresh Oil
Once the old oil has been drained and the new filter has been installed, the mechanic will add fresh oil to the engine. The type and amount of oil used will depend on the make and model of your car, as well as the recommended oil specifications outlined in your owner's manual.
Checking Other Fluid Levels
As part of the oil and filter change service, the mechanic may also check other fluid levels, such as brake fluid, power steering fluid, and coolant.
Inspecting for Other Issues
While performing an oil and filter change, the mechanic may also inspect other areas of the engine for any signs of damage or wear and tear. This can include checking the belts, hoses, and battery.
It is generally recommended to have an oil and filter change performed every 5,000 to 7,500 miles, depending on the make and model of your car, as well as your driving habits.
Neglecting to have this service done regularly can lead to a build-up of contaminants in the oil, which can cause engine damage and reduce your car's performance.
What's included in a minor service?
- Interim Service Plus:
- Air Filter Replacement
- Fuel Filter Replacement
- Spark Plug Replacement (Petrol Engines Only)
- Pollen Filter Replacement (If Applicable)
- Tyre Check
A minor car service is an important part of routine maintenance for your vehicle. It involves a thorough inspection of the car and replacement of certain parts that are prone to wear and tear. Here's what's included in a typical minor service:
Oil and Filter Change
Just like in an oil and filter change service, the mechanic will replace the old oil and filter with a new one.
The mechanic will inspect the brake pads, discs and fluid for wear and tear. They may also clean the brakes and adjust the handbrake if necessary.
The mechanic will check the condition and pressure of the tyres. If they are found to be underinflated, the mechanic will inflate them to the correct pressure. If they are worn out, they may need to be replaced.
The mechanic will check the levels of other fluids in the car, such as the coolant, power steering fluid and brake fluid. If they are found to be low, they will be topped up.
The mechanic will check that all lights are working correctly, including the headlights, brake lights, indicators and reverse lights.
Air Filter Check
The air filter will be checked and replaced if necessary. The air filter prevents debris and dirt from entering the engine and helps maintain its performance.
Wiper Blades Check
The mechanic will inspect the wiper blades for wear and tear and replace them if necessary. It is important to have good quality wiper blades to ensure good visibility during adverse weather conditions.
The battery will be checked for signs of wear and tear, and the connections will be cleaned if necessary. A healthy battery ensures reliable starting of the car.
A minor service is a comprehensive check of your car's essential components, including the brakes, tyres, fluids and filters. It is recommended to have a minor service performed every 12 months or every 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. Regular minor services will help keep your car in good condition and avoid costly repairs down the line.
What's included in a major service?
- Minor Service Plus:
- Brake Fluid Replacement
- Coolant Change
- Timing Belt Replacement (If Applicable)
- Full Vehicle Inspection
- Diagnostic Check
A major service is a more comprehensive type of maintenance for your car. It typically includes all the checks and replacements that are performed during a minor service, along with additional inspections and replacements of parts that are prone to wear and tear over time.
Here's what's included in a typical major service:
Oil and Filter Change
The old oil and filter will be replaced with a new one.
The mechanic will inspect the brake pads, discs, and fluid. They may also clean the brakes and adjust the handbrake if necessary.
The mechanic will check the condition and pressure of the tyres. If they are found to be underinflated or worn out, they may need to be replaced.
The mechanic will check the levels of all fluids in the car, including coolant, power steering fluid, brake fluid, and transmission fluid. If they are found to be low, they will be topped up.
Air Filter Check
The air filter will be checked and replaced if necessary.
Fuel Filter Check
The fuel filter will be checked and replaced if necessary. A clean fuel filter ensures that the fuel entering the engine is free from contaminants and debris.
Spark Plug Replacement
The spark plugs will be removed and replaced if necessary. Worn-out spark plugs can cause poor engine performance, misfires and a decrease in fuel efficiency.
Timing Belt Replacement
The timing belt will be replaced if it is worn or damaged. A damaged timing belt can cause significant damage to the engine if it fails.
The mechanic will inspect the suspension system and replace any worn-out parts. Worn-out suspension components can cause poor handling and uneven tyre wear.
Steering System Check
The steering system will be inspected for any signs of wear and tear, and the power steering fluid will be topped up if necessary.
Cooling System Check
The cooling system will be inspected, and the coolant will be replaced if it is dirty or low.
The battery will be checked for signs of wear and tear, and the connections will be cleaned if necessary.
It is recommended to have a major service performed every 24 months or every 20,000 miles, whichever comes first. Regular major services will help keep your car in top condition and avoid costly repairs down the line.
What you should know
- An interim service is usually recommended for cars with low mileage or those that have undergone a major service in the last 12 months.
- A minor service is recommended for cars with moderate mileage that require basic maintenance.
- A major service is recommended for cars with high mileage or those that have not been serviced in the last two years.
- The cost of a car service can vary depending on several factors such as the age, make and model of the vehicle, the type of service required, and the location of the service centre.
- Regular car servicing can help detect and prevent potential problems, improve fuel efficiency, and prolong the life of your vehicle.
Q. How often should I service my car?
A. It is recommended that you service your car every 12 months or every 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. However, this may vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle and the type of service required.
Q. Can I skip a service if my car seems to be running fine?
A. It is not recommended to skip a service as regular car servicing can help detect potential problems before they become major and more costly repairs.
Q. What is included in a full vehicle inspection during a major service?
A. A full vehicle inspection during a major service includes a thorough check of all the major components of your vehicle, including brakes, suspension, steering, engine, exhaust system, and electrical system.
Regular car servicing is an essential part of maintaining your vehicle and ensuring its smooth and safe operation. Interim, minor and major car services are the three most common types of car servicing, and each service includes a different level of maintenance and inspection.
By understanding the details of each service, you can make an informed decision about what type of service your car needs to stay in top-notch condition.
If you are looking to book your car in for a service, look no further than Pilgrims of March in Cambridge.