What's involved in a vehicle service?

Like most, I personally find car services are like stepping into the unknown. The idea of leaving your car in the hands of a stranger can seem counter intuitive and without knowing what’s happening it can also feel little worrying. What’s being done, what parts are being replaced, what exactly should I expect once the service has been completed? With all of this confusion in mind I set out to find out what was involved in car servicing so I could decode the jargon that left me stumped on previous car servicing outings.

What’s in a service?

Generally car services can be broken into two types; there are the minor services (generally every 10-15 thousand km depending on manufacturer) and the major services (generally every 30-45 thousand kilometres depending on manufacturer). Minor car services are generally rather quick (as little as 90 minutes) and generally only include changing oil and oil filters with a few other minor jobs (see below) also involved. This is in stark contrast to the more comprehensive and more costly business of the major car service. The services vary deeply depending on the make and model of a given vehicle, the most common elements of the major and minor services are noted below.

Vehicle service checklist


Asking your mechanic beforehand for a list of things to be done (for Fleetcare Novated Lease customers this and post service advice is managed by in house maintenance teams) can really help you educate yourself on your cars needs and specifications. Equally, asking for a written list of what was done afterwards can also help you relate to your vehicle. The main takeaway point here is that vehicle servicing standards really do depend on manufacturers guidelines, so getting to know your car through the vehicle user manual can save you time, money and unnecessary anxiety. It's also a good idea to stay in touch with what mechanics are saying about your vehicle and what you yourself suspect or know is wrong with your vehicle. In the end ignoring vehicle servicing really isn’t an option, but for many, getting over the initial anxiety can simply be a case of just knowing just a little more about how services and vehicles work.

Have you had a bad servicing experience?

Have you ever had a service which changed your car completely?

See how Fleetcare manages maintenance and servicing

Leave your comments below.

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Fleetcare Hi Jay,

Thanks for the comment.

Whether a person’s car is used to get to work, or simply driving the kids to school, cars are a necessity for most of us. It is great to be able to share information that could help people prevent major problems to their vehicle.
3/10/2017 1:56:35 PM
Jay Jorgenson It's true that taking your car in for "servicing" is a scary unknown. Some companies do a good job and check the majority of the items you mention but many don't. It's important to find out exactly what they do so that you prevent any major problems! 29/09/2017 10:30:20 AM
Fleetcare Hi Jayne, thanks for the comment.

Sorry to hear that you are having issues after a service.

Hopefully, you are able to book in and get this looked at. All the best.
28/07/2017 12:23:07 PM
Jayne Carey Good advice as I just had a service done yesterday & he had to change the main belt on my 2008 X Trail we notice that there is a poo of oil on the ground today coming from engine 21/07/2017 1:26:06 PM
Sioeli Nuuhiva Very useful information. Thank you. 12/12/2016 5:23:28 PM
Christine Have a problem with trusting a mechanic if they do the service properly. 26/09/2015 3:25:28 AM
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