Buying a car and its maintenance is no easy deal for us. Buying a car is a onetime expense but its maintenance involves huge expense that fall frequently on the shoulders of owners. Getting your car serviced has now become must to do, to protect your car from wear and tear. Which remains so as only until the time we get betrayed at the hands of somebody in whom we trusted blindly. With exactly this type of attitude we fork over our cars for service. Next time you’re taking your car for service, here is that the list of things that you simply should check to avoid getting duped.
It’s a standard practice to prepare a job s card, regardless of the station to which you give your car for service. The sheet acts as a means of communication between the mechanic and the service advisor. While giving your car for service you may point out certain faults that need to be taken care of, make sure that you check the car and sheet while taking the delivery just to ensure that everything has been attended to and the said corrections has been done.
Check itemised invoice:
An Invoice is always prepared after you get the car serviced. Make sure to check that it carries the price of the item as was approximately quoted to you by the service advisor.
The engine is the heart of your car and for it to function properly; it needs engine oil change as well as filter change. Depending on when you are getting the engine oil changed, observe the colour before and after. New oil would be lighter in colour and clean but in diesel vehicle engine oil colour convert in black after some minute’s engine runs.
Coolant / Brake/ Steering fluid:
It is advised to change the engine coolant after few thousand kilometres since it loses its properties after sometime. And depending on the car manufacturer’s recommendation, you may need to replace / refill the brake and steering fluid too. While there’s no way you can ascertain if this has been done or not unless you see it while it’s being done. It’s better to stay in the observation bay or take it to a service station where you can actually see it
Belongings / Accessories:
Just to be on the safer side it’s advised that you take out the tool kit and other personal belongings out of the car before giving it for service. If it’s not possible, you can ask the service advisor to mention this on the Job sheet to ensure that it does not get misplaced while it’s being worked upon. Also, upon taking the delivery ensure that spare wheel and other accessories are intact.
Check Fuel level:
Service advisors mark the fuel level on the job card to ensure that it’s not being misused. It’s common practice to check air conditioning working during summers. To ensure that it’s not being misused by mechanics for relaxing, check the fuel level upon delivery.
Check Odometer reading:
It’s common practice to take for a short test drive of about 3-4 kms after servicing just to ensure that the car is driving properly, is dynamically fine and there aren’t issues as such. The reading would reveal if the car was misused behind your back. A long test drive may be required in case the engine overhauling has been done, engine over heating etc.
Have a good look at the tyres while taking the delivery of your car. The chances of wheels swapping are likely to happen if your car is due to get the wheel rotation or alignment.
Take a road test with the service advisor:
This is last but certainly not the least. While you may be in a hurry to leave with the car after it is serviced. It’s better to take a test drive with the service advisor and see the issue that you pointed out have actually been sorted out or not, however smaller they may be.