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Servicing your vehicle at home vs at a professional garage?

21st February 2023

One of the main things that helps your car retain its value, and keeps it in good working order is regular vehicle maintenance. And while it might not be necessary to go to the garage for every part of yyour vehicle's upkeep it’s important to be able to know when to go to a professional - this guide will help you decide.  

Can you give your vehicle a full service at home?

Your vehicle should be serviced at least every 12 months, or every 10,000 miles, whichever comes first. While it’s technically possible to perform a service with the right knowledge and equipment, performing a service on your vehicle if you’re not 100% sure what you’re doing, or if you don’t have the right tools for the job, can leave you without a car and in a worst-case scenario, can even end up with you injuring yourself. 

Why should you take your car in for a professional service?

There are a number of reasons why you should take your vehicle in for a professional service, our skilled mechanics are trained to assess your vehicle with care and spot any potential faults. When we perform a service, we go through a detailed checklist which assesses everything from the bodywork condition to brake pads. We also check the vehicle on the ramp to thoroughly check elements underneath the car like the exhaust system and wheels. Your service record will be updated which helps to maintain the value of your car and keep track of any maintenance that has been carried out.  

What car maintenance can I do at home?

If you’re confident in your skills and have the right tools some car maintenance can be done at home, however, if you have any doubts or worries, just find your local garage for help and advice. 

Some of these vehicle maintenance tasks can include;  

  • Oil: Checking the oil and replacing the fluid if necessary  
  • Windscreen wipers: Checking their general condition and replacing them if needed.  
  • Wheels: Repairing your alloy wheels can be a simple job.  
  • Tyres: Checking your tyre tread depth, pressures and condition 
  • Headlights: Cleaning and maintaining your car headlights 
  • Battery: Checking and maintaining your car battery 

For a full list of vehicle maintenance that can be done at home, read through our maintenance checklist.   

What maintenance should always be done at a garage?   

While it is possible to perform general maintenance at home, in some scenarios you shouldn’t hesitate in bringing your car into a garage. These include; 

  • Warning lights on your dashboard: If your dashboard lights up with a warning you will need diagnostic checks to find the root of the problem.  
  • Brakes: Brakes generally let you know when there’s an issue, if your brakes are making an unusual noise, or your brakes don’t feel right, it’s best to bring your vehicle in to be looked at by a professional.  
  • Noise, smoke or smells: If you hear strange noises, smoke or smells coming from your car or engine, it’s definitely worth taking it into the garage so that a professional can identify the problem. 

If you have any worries about your vehicle, find your local merityre specialist today. Or, if your vehicle is due a service, find out about our range of servicing options now.