Skip to main content

Main dealer v independent

“Do you have to have your car serviced by a dealership to keep your new car warranty?”  

There is considerable confusion among car owners about their servicing requirements, especially regarding what is required for them to maintain their new car warranty. We get asked this question a lot in our forum and in general conversation. It’s a bit surprising, because the law has been pretty clear on this for many years now.

We often here people say:  “I just bought a new BMW and the salesman told me I have to have it serviced by a BMW dealership to maintain the new car warranty.  Is this correct?  I have seen businesses claiming they can service my car without affecting the warranty.”

Assuming the above is an accurate portrayal of what was said, the BMW salesman has been very naughty here.  EU legislation requires all car manufacturers to offer at least a two-year unlimited mileage new car warranty on all their new cars (from date of registration), regardless of any change of ownership.  Every car salesperson knows this, or at least they should.  Cars outside their original new car warranty are a different kettle of fish altogether, and not covered here.

Under EU Block Exemption legislation, which has been around for many years now, a manufacturer cannot force a buyer to have their car serviced by their official dealership network, and cannot refuse to honour a new car warranty simply because a car has been serviced elsewhere.  However, a manufacturer does have the right to set a servicing schedule which must be adhered to.

Once the UK leaves the EU, there is a remote possiblilty that a British government could eventually overturn this law, but it is unlikely to ever happen. Not only will it not be a priority anytime soon, but local consumer groups would fiercely resist any attempts by manufacturer interests to compel British car owners to go to franchised dealers for servicing.

Many manufacturers offer new car warranty terms that are much longer than the minimum two-year period, but you need to check that the warranty provider is the same for the whole warranty period. Some importers offer a longer period, but after two years the warranty is provided by the local importer rather than the vehicle manufacturer, so the terms and conditions may be different.

New car warranty and servicing – your rights and responsibilities

As a car owner, you have the right to take your car to any licenced garage or mechanic for servicing, but you must ensure that the servicing is carried out exactly as per the manufacturer’s servicing schedule.  This means servicing must be undertaken on time and must use any genuine parts or lubricants specified by the manufacturer.

If you choose to have your car serviced by an independent garage or mechanic, make sure they are reputable.  Keep detailed invoices and receipts for all work done so you have proof that the car has been serviced according to schedule.

If your car requires repair work under its new car warranty, the manufacturer has the right to insist that this work is undertaken by its official dealerships.  This is entirely fair, since the manufacturer – rather than you – is paying for this work.

Basically, a good rule to remember is that if you’re paying for the work, you have the right to choose who does the work.

What if it’s not a manufacturer’s new car warranty?

Not all warranties are provided by the vehicle manufacturer, and here you need to be careful.

Many dealers will offer you extended warranties for a new car, or a used car warranty of some description, but these are usually not provided by the manufacturer and are basically aftermarket insurance policies.  As such, the requirements may be different and may tie you to a particular dealer or franchise for servicing.

RG Motor Services offer servicing on a wide range of makes and model of cars. We are authorisedand respected repairers of Audi, Skoda, Seat and VW along with BMW, Jaguar and Land Rover! 


Popular posts from this blog

Vauxhall P1325 P039D Diagnostic

Subject Vauxhall insignia A20TH

Workshop story of the week.

This week we had a very desperate customer,  his car had a fault that had been diagnoised at so many garages, he had spent close to a thousand pound in parts and his vehicle was still not working properly, he was very close to trading it in.
This would have left him well out of pocket and the vehicle eventually someone else's headache - sound familiar?

We get many car issues, but usually I am first port of call for them. The difference with this customer is that his confidence in garages has really been knocked and he has definitely had enough of paying out and not getting results. But unfortunately I cant work for free... so after careful consideration and a long chat with the customer, we come to agreement for him to pay me to have a look, and the journey started.

The fault codes present are P1325 followed by P039C P03A6,  Crank sensor and glow plugs cylinder malfunction, all the parts had been replaced but fault still prese…

Depresion and anxiety in the workplace

Hi Guys,

Ryan here, it is 40 degrees I am laying on my sun lounger, not a thing to stress or worry about beside the kids attempting to kill each other in the pool. But every now and then something will remind me of work and the strangest thought's pop in my head like 'did I get that part right', 'did I inform any one of certain tasks', and so on and so on. Is this my curse, so I thought, but while catching up on some reading I stumbled across a conversations on one of the motor forum I visit. I read about another fellow garage owner mechanic and how he gets down about the constant effort of having to make sure diagnosis is right, keeping customers informed and at times it gets him to the point of depression. 

Reading through his descriptions  I could not help but sympathize with him, as like many other people it was all to familiar. Depression maybe, anxiety most probably, when something beats me like a fault on car, acustomer'sexplanations, a new tool or infor…

10% off servicing

If you own a a BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover or VW group (Skoda, Seat, Audi) car on a 14 plate or newer you can recieve 10% off your service with us between now and the end of August. Quote: FACEBOOK

Because we are against paying premium prices for main dealer services which you can get elsewhere.

Does it effect my warranty?
No because we are an authorised garage for these car models which means we can access the same information as the main dealers and at a much more reasonable price.