Looking After Your Vehicle

How often should you service your car?

Paul Green, National Remarketing Manager
Thursday, 02 January 2020

How often should you service your car? This is a question asked by car owners not knowing whether to spend the money on a service or not. 

Although it’s not a legal requirement, servicing your car can offer many safety and financial benefits in the long run. You can catch any issues early so that it doesn’t effect the running of your car, but also find and fix any safety issues that may affect you later down the line. 

Each car type is slightly different when deciding how often and when to service your car. We would suggest servicing your car ideally once a year, especially if it’s over 3 years old.

How often should you service your car? This is a question asked by car owners not knowing whether to spend the money on a service or not. 

Although it’s not a legal requirement, servicing your car can offer many safety and financial benefits in the long run. You can catch any issues early so that it doesn’t effect the running of your car, but also find and fix any safety issues that may affect you later down the line. 

Each car type is slightly different when deciding how often and when to service your car. We would suggest servicing your car ideally once a year, especially if it’s over 3 years old.

How often should I service my car?

How often should I service my car?

It’s recommended by manufacturers and mechanics alike, that a car should be serviced every 12,000 miles or every 12 months, whichever happens first. Some cars will also feature a self-diagnostic system, which will tell you when your car is ready for a service, please don’t ignore any warning lights even if your car hasn’t travelled 12,000 miles since the last service. 

If after your last service you were told that your car might need an ‘interim service’, this means that you should look at getting another service completed 6 months or 6,000 miles after your previous one. This is probably because something is wearing on your car and the mechanic would like to check everything is as it should be. It is a precautionary measure.

There are a few things you can do yourself in between services, such as checking your tyre pressure and engine oil to keep your car in a good working condition.

It’s recommended by manufacturers and mechanics alike, that a car should be serviced every 12,000 miles or every 12 months, whichever happens first. Some cars will also feature a self-diagnostic system, which will tell you when your car is ready for a service, please don’t ignore any warning lights even if your car hasn’t travelled 12,000 miles since the last service. 

If after your last service you were told that your car might need an ‘interim service’, this means that you should look at getting another service completed 6 months or 6,000 miles after your previous one. This is probably because something is wearing on your car and the mechanic would like to check everything is as it should be. It is a precautionary measure.

There are a few things you can do yourself in between services, such as checking your tyre pressure and engine oil to keep your car in a good working condition.

Service type How often could you need this type of service?
Regular maintenance When the oil and filter need replacing
Interim service Every 6 months or 6,000 miles, whichever comes first
Full service Every 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first
Manufacturer service This is decided by the manufacturer, you can look in your car manual to see when this might be
Service type How often could you need this type of service?
Regular maintenance When the oil and filter need replacing
Interim service Every 6 months or 6,000 miles, whichever comes first
Full service Every 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first
Manufacturer service This is decided by the manufacturer, you can look in your car manual to see when this might be

Is a car service the same as an MOT?

Is a car service the same as an MOT?

You might think that a MOT and a service look at the same parts of your car, this is not the case.

A MOT is an annual legal requirement, and every car has a specific date that an MOT needs to be completed by. It’s not optional, and is a technical safety inspection, making sure that the car is roadworthy. But before you go for an MOT make sure you don’t fail on small issues you could have fixed yourself, it could definitely save you money.

A service checks wear and tear on the car and will highlight any parts or fluids that need replacing to ensure your car is not only safe but that it performs in the best way for you. It’s also a good idea to learn how to check your car engine oil so that you can check on your car between services.

Although an MOT is a legal requirement it doesn’t look at a car as thoroughly as a service, which is why it’s considered best to get both checks on your car. 

MOT test centre sign

You might think that a MOT and a service look at the same parts of your car, this is not the case.

A MOT is an annual legal requirement, and every car has a specific date that an MOT needs to be completed by. It’s not optional, and is a technical safety inspection, making sure that the car is roadworthy. But before you go for an MOT make sure you don’t fail on small issues you could have fixed yourself, it could definitely save you money.

A service checks wear and tear on the car and will highlight any parts or fluids that need replacing to ensure your car is not only safe but that it performs in the best way for you. It’s also a good idea to learn how to check your car engine oil so that you can check on your car between services.

Although an MOT is a legal requirement it doesn’t look at a car as thoroughly as a service, which is why it’s considered best to get both checks on your car. 

MOT test centre sign

Is a car service a legal requirement?

No, a car service is not a legal requirement, unlike an MOT, which is a legal requirement and is needed to drive your car legally on the road. A car service is much more thorough than an MOT and can highlight any wear and tear issues before it becomes a much bigger, and more expensive problem. 

Having your car serviced is your choice, however it is highly advised in order to keep your car in good running order. It will also mean you stay safer on the road. 

Is a car service a legal requirement?

No, a car service is not a legal requirement, unlike an MOT, which is a legal requirement and is needed to drive your car legally on the road. A car service is much more thorough than an MOT and can highlight any wear and tear issues before it becomes a much bigger, and more expensive problem. 

Having your car serviced is your choice, however it is highly advised in order to keep your car in good running order. It will also mean you stay safer on the road. 

Do you need to service your car every year?

Do you need to service your car every year?

There is no legal reason why you should service your car every year, but if you want to keep your car running smoothly and safely, then it’s a must. There are many reasons why you should have your car serviced but knowing whether it needs a service is dependent on the car’s model, age, mileage and how it’s driven.

Safety of yourself and your passengers is probably the most important reason to have a service. It can help to identify any potential problems before they become actual issues, issues that will cost you (most likely) an arm and a leg to fix. Servicing your car will give you peace of mind that it’s in a road-worthy condition.

You may be saving money if you don’t service your car regularly, but in the long run you won’t be. As with anything, if you catch a problem sooner rather than later then it’ll be cheaper and easier to sort (most of the time). Engine oil is a good example, you need it to lubricate and protect the moving parts inside your engine, and without it your engine could seize up costing thousands to repair or replace. Servicing not only keeps your car safe and cheaper to run, but it can also increase it’s life span. If you look after your car the healthier it will be for longer.

Service MOT

There is no legal reason why you should service your car every year, but if you want to keep your car running smoothly and safely, then it’s a must. There are many reasons why you should have your car serviced but knowing whether it needs a service is dependent on the car’s model, age, mileage and how it’s driven.

Safety of yourself and your passengers is probably the most important reason to have a service. It can help to identify any potential problems before they become actual issues, issues that will cost you (most likely) an arm and a leg to fix. Servicing your car will give you peace of mind that it’s in a road-worthy condition.

You may be saving money if you don’t service your car regularly, but in the long run you won’t be. As with anything, if you catch a problem sooner rather than later then it’ll be cheaper and easier to sort (most of the time). Engine oil is a good example, you need it to lubricate and protect the moving parts inside your engine, and without it your engine could seize up costing thousands to repair or replace. Servicing not only keeps your car safe and cheaper to run, but it can also increase it’s life span. If you look after your car the healthier it will be for longer.

Service MOT

If you are thinking of selling your car, it’s worth bearing in mind that you can add value by having it regularly serviced (once a year or every 12,000 miles), better still if it has a full-service history. It’s likely to attract more buyers and allow you to charge a higher price.

Servicing your car gives you the security that everything is in full working order.

f you are thinking of selling your car, it’s worth bearing in mind that you can add value by having it regularly serviced (once a year or every 12,000 miles), better still if it has a full-service history. It’s likely to attract more buyers and allow you to charge a higher price.

Servicing your car gives you the security that everything is in full working order.

FAQs: Servicing your car

A new car is just like a used car when it comes to servicing, and will need to be serviced every 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

This is not to be confused with MOT’s of new cars, which do not need to happen until the car is 3 years old. 

To get yourself and your car ready for a service make sure you take with you: 

  • The cars service book – These are becoming more rare, so don’t be worried if you don’t have one with your car, the garage will update these online. To be sure as well, do keep all invoices for any services you do get done on your car.
  • Alloy wheel keys or locking nuts- These can usually be found with the spare wheel. If you’ve never removed these from the vehicle then they should still be in the car and a mechanic will be able to find them. 
  • Empty the car of anything valuable – Make sure there is nothing valuable in the car, as it’s better to be safe than sorry.
  • Make sure your car is clean – We’d also advise tidying and washing your car so that the mechanic can easily always see what they are looking for. This includes emptying your boot so that they can get to the spare tyre.

A service is due either every 12 months or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

You can either look at your service book which will tell you the date it was last serviced and what mileage it was serviced at, or look back at invoices you have from your last service. 

If it’s the first service since you bought the car, then look back at the invoice you have from buying the car to check the mileage. Or you can simply just book your first service for 12 months after you bought it. 

If you miss a car service then we would advise to get one booked in as soon as possible. 

The longer you leave it to get a service the higher risk you have of breaking down. It also reduces the life span of your car as it could be running low on important fluids and parts that keep the engine and vehicle operating correctly.  

Missing a car service could also make your car less desirable to others when it comes to selling it in the future. A car that has had regular services shows that it’s been looked after and it should be in good condition.

A car should be serviced every 12 months or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. If you miss a service then you should organise for it to have one as soon as possible to minimise the risk of breakdown.

There are different types of car service which check up to 100’s of elements of the car, that we would not usually know need fixing. With this in mind it’s extremely important to get services regularly.

FAQs: Servicing your car

A new car is just like a used car when it comes to servicing, and will need to be serviced every 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

This is not to be confused with MOT’s of new cars, which do not need to happen until the car is 3 years old. 

To get yourself and your car ready for a service make sure you take with you: 

  • The cars service book – These are becoming more rare, so don’t be worried if you don’t have one with your car, the garage will update these online. To be sure as well, do keep all invoices for any services you do get done on your car.
  • Alloy wheel keys or locking nuts- These can usually be found with the spare wheel. If you’ve never removed these from the vehicle then they should still be in the car and a mechanic will be able to find them. 
  • Empty the car of anything valuable – Make sure there is nothing valuable in the car, as it’s better to be safe than sorry.
  • Make sure your car is clean – We’d also advise tidying and washing your car so that the mechanic can easily always see what they are looking for. This includes emptying your boot so that they can get to the spare tyre.

A service is due either every 12 months or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

You can either look at your service book which will tell you the date it was last serviced and what mileage it was serviced at, or look back at invoices you have from your last service. 

If it’s the first service since you bought the car, then look back at the invoice you have from buying the car to check the mileage. Or you can simply just book your first service for 12 months after you bought it. 

If you miss a car service then we would advise to get one booked in as soon as possible. 

The longer you leave it to get a service the higher risk you have of breaking down. It also reduces the life span of your car as it could be running low on important fluids and parts that keep the engine and vehicle operating correctly.  

Missing a car service could also make your car less desirable to others when it comes to selling it in the future. A car that has had regular services shows that it’s been looked after and it should be in good condition.

A car should be serviced every 12 months or 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. If you miss a service then you should organise for it to have one as soon as possible to minimise the risk of breakdown.

There are different types of car service which check up to 100’s of elements of the car, that we would not usually know need fixing. With this in mind it’s extremely important to get services regularly.

Paul Green, National Remarketing Manager
Bringing you expert advice on how to maintain and service your vehicle, so you can enjoy a stress-free life on the road.
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