Service Schedules for Lease Cars

By Kevin | 23rd June 2016 | Category: Blog | Leave a comment


Back in April, we published a blog article about getting your lease car serviced, pointing out that by servicing it at regular intervals as advised by the manufacturer - whether you are purchasing the vehicle outright at the end of the lease or just leasing the vehicle for the agreed period - you are keeping your car in a good condition, making it less likely to incur high garage charges or fair wear and tear charges in the future as well as ensuring that the manufacturer's warranty is valid.

In this post, we take a look at what is involved in an annual car service, why it is important and how you can check the recommended service intervals for your lease car.

What is involved in a Car Service?

When it comes down to it, a car service is basic car maintenance - car maintenance that many drivers ignore and leave until the MOT is due. But with new cars, that MOT is three years away, and in that time, much can go wrong with a car and it is the little things that go wrong that can do the biggest damage - especially if they combine.

The Car Care Council in America produced the infographic shown below to demonstrate some of the basic things that they encountered in cars during a survey that can build up and cause problems.

  • Car Care Stats Infographic 2015

    Car Care Stats Infographic 2015

    25% of cars had low or dirty engine oil.
  • 13% had low or contaminated brake fluid.
  • 18% had dirty air filters.
  • 17% had inadequate cooling protection or low coolant levels.
  • 16% needed new windscreen wiper 
  • 27% had low or contaminated washer fluid.
  • 18% needed new belts
  • Overall, 89% of vehicles were in need of at least one service or repair.

So what do they suggest that drivers should do that are included in a car service, and when should these things be done?

Be aware that a large percentage of the checks and car servicing detailed below can be done without going to a dealer at little or no cost - but more about authorised dealers later. 

Check Frequently

  • Dashboard Indicator Lights On - Do they work, because if they don't you aren't going to know if the indicators are working?
  • Lights - Is the bulb faulty? Is the connection working? Do they come on when they should. Are they bright enough?
  • Tyre Inflation and Condition - Are they dangerous? Are they inflated to the correct pressure for their use? Is the tread legal?
  • Windscreen Washer Fluid - Is it topped up? Does it work?
  • Engine Oil Level - Is it at the correct level? Is it the right oil for the vehicle?

Check Every 3 Months/ 3,000 Miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tyre Inflation and Condition
  • Windscreen Washer Fluid

Check Every 6 Months/6,000 Miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Chassis Lubrication
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tyre Inflation and Condition
  • Windscreen Washer Fluid
  • Wiper Blades

Check Every 9 Months/ 9,000 Miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Tyre Inflation and Condition
  • Windscreen Washer Fluid

Check every 12 Months/ 12,000 miles

  • Automatic Transmission Fluid
  • Battery and Cables
  • Belts
  • Brakes
  • Cabin Air Filter
  • Chassis Lubrication
  • Dashboard Indicator Light On
  • Coolant (Antifreeze)
  • Engine Air Filter
  • Engine Oil
  • Exhaust
  • Hoses
  • Lights
  • Power Steering Fluid
  • Steering and Suspension
  • Tyre Inflation and Condition
  • Wheel Alignment
  • Windshield Washer Fluid
  • Wiper Blades

These are just the basics. You can opt for a Full or Major Service which goes over everything in the car, and includes involves the checking of every nook, cranny, wire, connection and cable in the car, depending on which service is chosen.

It is then that it is recommended that the car is serviced by a car manufacturer dealer relevant to the car. 

When it comes to lease cars, who services the car may depend on the lease agreement because some finance providers will insist on certain dealers being used to continue the validation of the agreement - especially if you have a maintenance contract agreement.

However, it is not always compulsory to use a local main dealer to have your vehicle serviced, so if you’d prefer use a local garage for your service, the garage must be VAT registered and genuine manufacturer parts must be used on the vehicle. It is important too that the service handbook is stamped.

How often are the service intervals on my lease vehicle?

Obviously, the whole reason for a car service is to check and replace the parts which wear down over time and use, from brake pads and oil levels to the fuel filter and spark plugs. 

How often a full service is required depends on the manufacturer, and details can be found in the manufacturer's handbook as to what are the required 'service intervals' and what needs replacing when on your vehicle. Generally a service is required yearly or, if the car is used for long and frequent journeys, certain mileage - usually 10 or 12,000 miles.

Each vehicle is different, and with the majority of new cars displaying a warning message on the dashboard when something is wrong with the vehicle or if your car is due a service, it is vitally important to take notice of these.

This is important in any car, but with a lease car it is important because you do not own the car during your lease period, and are liable for any costs incurred due to wear and tear on the vehicle at the end of the contract.

To find out the Service Intervals on each particular car manufacturer, click on the links below to see what they recommend for each particular model that they manufacturer.

If you have any questions regarding servicing on your lease vehicle, ring our Customer Service Team and they will be able to help you.


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