Vehicles are designed to last. However, there are a few keys to extending your car's life and getting the most out of it is maintenance. Routine or scheduled maintenance is crucial for your car because it ensures all vehicle components are functioning optimally. However, where you choose to take your car for service is equally vital. Generally, you can choose to service your vehicle at a dealership or go to an independent garage or auto repair shop. Choosing the wrong option could mean significant problems for your vehicle down the road because of improper fixes. Therefore, here is a quick guide to help you choose wisely.


Cost is one of the most crucial aspects to think about when considering car service. That's because car services can be expensive. Typically, dealerships tend to be costlier than independent garages. Therefore, if you are on a budget or looking to save some money on your next car service, it would be best to consider an independent mechanic.


Is your vehicle still under warranty? Going to the dealership would be the best option. That's because dealerships typically have manufacturer-backed warranties. Therefore, you can check with them first as manufacturers usually pay them to conduct service repairs for vehicles still under warranty. That means dealerships can cover all or some of the service costs, depending on the specific mechanical issue and warranty terms.

What's worth noting is that even if your car is no longer under warranty, you may still find manufacturer-backed extended warranties at various dealerships. However, this will often depend on the automaker.

Personalised Customer Service

Building a personal relationship with a mechanic comes with many benefits. The mechanic can guide you through the process, enabling you to understand your car better. Consequently, a more personalised service comes with improved customer satisfaction. Typically, independent garages have the edge over their dealership counterparts when it comes to personalised customer service. That's because of their smaller nature compared to dealerships, which are usually larger with many technical staff or mechanics working on several vehicles, making it difficult to build personal relationships with them.


Convenience goes both ways. First, when it comes to location, independent repair shops can be more convenient. That's because most of them are usually available in readily accessible and local locations compared to the dealers. In addition, you can find several independent auto repair shops in your area to choose from. However, with dealerships, chances are you may have to drive some distance to find one, unless you live near one.

On the other hand, dealerships are more convenient when it comes to loaner vehicles. That is, if it will take several hours or even days to fix your car, the dealership can offer a loaner car as an alternative means of transport, usually at no additional cost!

Keep these tips in mind when looking for a car service near you.