Benefits to Having Your Car Serviced at a Dealership

August 17th, 2018 by
Need to have your car serviced, but not sure where to take it? Generally speaking, you have three options: A certified dealer’s service center, a chain repair shop, or a smaller independent garage. In most cases, it’s the first which is going to offer you the best service, for a variety of reasons. Here are a few benefits of having your car serviced at a dealership—and the reason they can offer these advantages independents and chains cannot.

Free Under Warranty

The first and perhaps foremost reason for many drivers to seek servicing at a dealership lay in the difference in how your warranty will impact the visit. If your car is under a manufacturer warranty or an extender dealer warranty, then third party service will inevitably cost you more.

Just as importantly, many forms of servicing must be performed by a certified technician to keep your warranty valid. You can get your tires rotated and oil changed wherever you like, but any heavy work should be left to authorized parties.

Manufacturer Certified Technicians

There’s a good reason your warranty probably requires dealership servicing as part of its terms: the mechanics who work on your car when you take it to a certified dealer will be certified by the manufacturer to work on your car. That means they’ll understand the ins and outs and specifics of your car—an important point given the increasingly diverse and complex technology found in cars at all price points.

Specialist Equipment

For some drivers, a third party mechanic isn’t even a real option, because their car will need specialized equipment for proper service. And outside of those cars which absolutely require some specialized tool operated by a certified technician, you have ten times as many which are best serviced with specialty equipment, even if that equipment isn’t strictly necessary.

In a broader sense, the facilities used in servicing a car at a dealer will almost certainly be superior to a local garage. These service locations will be modern facilities loaded with cutting edge equipment.

Guarantees On Work

Any work that comes out of a certified dealer is going to be guaranteed. On top of the obvious advantage of maintaining any existing warranties and the manufacturer paying for repairs still under warranty, work done at a certified dealer will be backed by a strong guarantee—one with national reach, meaning if the repair fails you can take it back in and have additional repairs done for free.

You may also be able to take the opportunity to purchase a manufacturer-backed extended warranty while you’re having your car serviced at a dealer, something a third-party garage can’t typically offer.

Customer Satisfaction Standards

Because dealers must maintain their certification with the manufacturers, they must adhere to the higher standards of customer support, customer service, and customer satisfaction put out by those manufacturers. A manufacturer wants you to think positively of your car, even after it requires service; that’s not going to happen if getting repairs turns into a frustrating nightmare.

A third party shop, on the other hand, has far less incentive to get it right—especially if they don’t expect you to become a regular. And any incentive is governed by internal standards, not the more advanced and nuanced standards of a manufacturer.

Special Alerts

Third party mechanics often fail to keep up with key manufacturer recalls and technical service bulletins, assuming they even pay to maintain access to the databanks which provide such information. There’s also the concern that a less specialized set of technicians, even if they do care to pay attention to vehicle-specific alerts, may simply not be able to keep up with the alerts and special needs of vehicles from a huge selection of manufacturers.

A dealer service department will know immediately if there’s any recall or service bulletin out for your model—and if one comes in later, they’ll be quick to contact you for follow up attention. A good corner or chain garage can do this as well, if they keep up with their servicing software, but it’s a guarantee with a dealer service center.

Parts Quality and Sourcing

Because the service you’re receiving at a dealer service center is officially supported by the manufacturer, you can be certain your car will receive all original parts as needed—and at a better price than a third party garage, even if that garage maintains appropriate supply lines for original parts. Of course, this means you can’t opt to save money with third-party alternatives, but installing those adds risk and violates most warranties anyway.

It’s worth nothing that in cases where supplies are limited or slow for any reason, it becomes even more important that you go to a certified dealer’s service center instead of a smaller garage, as official service requests will be of higher priority. This also combines with familiarity and superior equipment to result in a much faster turnaround for dealer service centers.

Parting Thoughts

Taking your car to a dealer service center is about getting officially supported service. It’s the closest thing to having the car delivered back to the original maker for repairs, and the benefits in the short term and long term make it clear that it’s usually the smart move. Mercedes-Benz owners have trusted their cars with dealer service for years. Call our service center to schedule your next maintenance service.

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