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29 Dec 2013 | by Lisa Cockerill

New car warranty myth | M1 Safety Certificates






Buying a brand new car is exciting and an experience that you won’t forget. The salesperson will go through all of the features of the car, accessories and most importantly the conditions of your new car warranty.


It is very common that the salesperson will impress upon you that you must have your servicing done at the dealership that you have brought it from in order to keep your new car warranty.


This is not true.


There are many new car owners who are still under the misled belief that they must have their car serviced at the respective dealership they brought the vehicle from.


What is true is that a fully qualified mechanic needs to conduct the service and use genuine parts to be able to keep your warranty. There are many small to medium mechanical workshops who have these qualifications and can sign off on your service logbook.


How to determine where to get the vehicle serviced.


Most people will know that the pricing of servicing at large dealerships is at the higher end of the market compared to the local mechanical workshop. Many dealerships have great apprenticeship programs and most mechanics will spend their first years in large dealerships learning their trade.


One concern that is often expressed is that you don’t actually know who is doing the work on your vehicle. Is it the first year apprentice or the fully qualified mechanic? Large dealerships will have only apprentice or fully qualified mechanics on staff working on the vehicles so this does give you peace of mind.


However, when looking for a mechanic to service your vehicle you need to know that by law they do not have to have their trade qualification certificate to do work on cars or other vehicles. A mechanical workshop can operate without a qualified mechanic legally. This may come as a surprise and not seem to make sense and yes, there are very skilled mechanically minded people who work in the industry but it is always best to qualify the person who is working on your vehicle. You spent a lot of money on it and you want it to remain in the best possible condition.


If the mechanical workshop has an Approved Inspection Station sign in Queensland on the outside of the building this means that they are able to issue Safety Certificates. To get this approval the mechanics that are approved have to be fully qualified and they also have a full criminal history check conducted. This accreditation is through the Department of Transport.


Another way to qualify the workshop is to search on Google for reviews on the local directories and read the feedback left by previous customers. Keeping in mind that not all customers are going to write about their experience with a business unless the experience was either really over the top fantastic or desperately terrible.


Obviously if there is a long list of reviews complaining about service and lack of quality in workmanship it is best to stay far away from that workshop.


Ask your friends and family, who they would recommend to take your vehicle to. It is always difficult when you first arrive to a new town/city and not know anyone. It is always a good idea if you don’t feel comfortable with the first mechanical workshop take the vehicle to another workshop for a second opinion. If they are both around the same price and have the same list of services required you know that this should be okay. If there are large variances between them in both parts required and price it won’t hurt to get a third opinion.


It is also a great way of qualifying who you can trust.


The hard part of servicing is that you won’t know the quality of the mechanics work until the vehicle either breaks down or you take it to another mechanic who picks up on the maintenance items that should have been attended to in previous services.


When do you have to take it to the dealership for servicing?


If you have an extended new car warranty with the dealership it will often state that to keep the extended warranty you must have it serviced at the dealership.


There are different types of extended warranties. There are ones that are Factory Extended Warranties and Dealership Extended Warranties.


The difference between the two is that a Factory Extended Warranty still allows you to use any qualified mechanic whether dealership or independent workshop to complete the logbook servicing whereas a Dealership Extended Warranty will only be valid if the servicing is conducted by that dealership.


Ask the salesperson to clarify this when purchasing extended warranties.


What’s the difference between a Logbook Service and a General Service?


A Logbook Service is typically required for the warranty period of the vehicle. Warranty periods can vary from 3 years through to 10 years depending on the vehicle and what the factory or dealership is offering.


The service book on the vehicle will show when the servicing is required. They will vary from different makes and models and especially the different types of engines.


There are small and large Logbook Services. The small services start from an oil and oil filter change. A large service can include one or more of these additional service items.


-       Air Filter

-       Cabin Filter

-       Fuel Filter

-       Brake pads/rotors/drums

-       Brake fluid flush

-       Coolant flush

-       Differential oil change

-       Timing Belt replacements

-       Spark Plugs


Other miscellaneous items that should be accessed if they are required on any service are:


-       Wiper blades

-       Tyres

-       Light globes



General Servicing comes into effect when the warranty period has expired and is recommended to be conducted typically every 10,000kms. Some may vary though at 15,000kms or even 30,000kms depending on the make and model of the vehicle. Your mechanic should put a service sticker on your windscreen as a reminder of your next service. Many companies now will send a text message to remind you that the service is coming up.


A General Service also starts at an oil and oil filter change. The mechanic should be checking the vehicle thoroughly and advising you if there is any other parts that need replacing or servicing. A good mechanic will call and quote you before the work is carried out. No one likes to turn up to collect your car to have to pay an unexpected bill for work that was not approved to be carried out.


When the vehicle is being serviced whether it is a Logbook or General Service, the tyres should be rotated and a list provided of any defective parts on the vehicle that you should be made aware of, especially if they are urgent.







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