Compare car servicing chains Auto Masters, Bridgestone Select, Kmart Tyre & Auto Service, Midas, Repco Authorised Service and Ultratune on customer service, value for money, time taken, cost of parts, quality of car servicing, effectiveness of repairs and overall satisfaction.
For many of us, booking our car in for a service is a chore for another day, with our car often too crucial to our day-to-day lives to be out of action. However, put it off too long and you may end up doing more damage to your car, costing you further down the line. As a result, booking your ride in for a service can not only save you money in the long run, but also ensure you stay safe on the roads. But when it comes to booking your car in, who you choose to hand over the keys to is a big decision, with enough options to cause gridlock in the decision-making process.
With plenty of car servicing chains available, narrowing down which one to book with can be a struggle in itself, particularly if your car is a unique model or brand. To help you make a better-informed decision at servicing time, Canstar Blue annually surveys hundreds of motorists across the country, to find out about their experiences using some of Australia’s biggest servicing chains. This is what we found in 2018:
If you’ve got a warning light on your dashboard, or just want to make sure your ride is running smoothly, read on to find out what each car servicing chain has to offer, and which may the best option for you.
With 70% of survey respondents saying they trust car servicing companies to do an honest job, and 60% sticking to the same servicing chain every time their vehicle needs a service, it’s obvious that Australian motorists value honesty and transparency when it comes to what’s happening under the hood – and are willing to stick with the same provider for it. Of those who always use the same servicing chain, here are their reasons for doing so:
While it’s encouraging to see that 70% of motorists generally trust car servicing chains to do an honest job, that’s still a lot of people who don’t trust them! Of course, trust needs to be earned in the first place, so what do the major servicing chains say about what they can offer? Read on for details:
As Australia’s largest independent service network, with more than 400 workshops across the country, Repco Authorised Service provides traditional car servicing as well as a range of additional repair and inspection services for all areas of your car. These services include wheel alignments, oil changes, battery exchange, suspension servicing and specialised accessory installation for those looking to make their ride stand out on the road. If you’re looking to keep your business running smoothly as well, Repco Authorised Service also offers fleet servicing, making it handy for those constantly on the road.
In addition to car servicing, Repco Authorised Service also offers a ‘Car Care Advice’ section on its website, including all types of handy information, including travel tips and motoring laws for drivers to brush up on before setting out on the road. And if you do have troubles out on the roads, it offers a nationwide warranty for peace of mind.
In addition to offering tyres for a wide variety of car types and adventures, Bridgestone offers car servicing through its Bridgestone Select Auto Services branch to help keep your wheels running smoothly. Services include log book servicing, in addition to brakes, suspension, steering alignments and mechanical repairs, with Bridgestone Select servicing available at more than 100 locations nationwide.
Services can be booked online, with Bridgestone Select providing an online quote for those on a budget. Bridgestone Select also offers fleet servicing for businesses on the go, as well as Packaged Price Servicing at select locations for those looking to get more than a service, with the Packaged deal focussing on safety and performance.
In addition to the family car, Bridgestone Select also delivers fleet servicing for businesses, with a number of truck centres available around Australia, making it a handy option whether if you’re driving four wheels, or 18.
Available at over 60 locations within Western Australia and South Australia, Auto Masters offers a number of services for motorists, including all types of car servicing, whether you need a new car service or you’ve left it too long since your last.
You can book a service online, with Auto Masters outlining what you can expect when you book your car in at one of its centres. In addition to repairs and services, Auto Masters provides free water and oil checks if exploring under the hood is new territory for you, as well as a free towing service if you’ve broken down, helping to take some of the stress out of the situation.
Auto Masters additionally claims to offer a money-back guarantee for fixed price services, with the chain also providing loyalty rewards and payment plans for motorists to use, with full details available through its website.
Kmart may be best-known for its homewares, but the Kmart Tyre & Auto Service branch offers plenty of options for motorists, with more than 250 locations available around the country. Services can be booked online, with Kmart additionally listing car brands that can be serviced at certain locations on its website.
Kmart’s service products start with its Essential Service, with packaged deals, logbook servicing and new car servicing also available. Additionally, Kmart can conduct registration and safety inspections, as well as issue roadworthy certificates, ideal for those looking to get their car back on the road.
Kmart provides free six-month roadside assistance for those who purchase the Essential Plus or Logbook services, with customers also able to cash in on Flybuys points on most servicing purchases, helping drivers to rack up their rewards points as a tidy bonus.
With more than 40 years of experience within the Australian market, Midas provides a number of services for motorists, including traditional log book and fleet servicing, along with repairs to all areas of your ride. Locations are nationwide, with a store finder and online booking options available on the Midas website.
In addition to traditional servicing, Midas provides an Essential and Extensive service for those who want every nook and cranny of their car checked out. While more expensive than the logbook service, these in-depth services may be better suited for those who may have missed their last few services, or are worried about a particular issue, with Midas listing what’s included within each service for motorists to consider.
Specific brake, exhaust and suspension services are also available if you’ve narrowed down the problem, with Midas similarly offering specialised services for 4WD models. As an added bonus, motorists can also earn Velocity Points on select services, helping motorists get more bang for their buck.
Located at over 275 locations around Australia, Ultratune is a popular option for many motorists, whether you’re looking for a new set of tyres or a car service. Bookings can be made online, with Ultratune offering a store finder on its website, making it easier for drivers to find their local retailer.
Service options include full log book servicing, as well as specific services for brakes, air conditioning and suspension, with Ultratune offering 12 months’ free roadside assistance with any servicing purchase. Full servicing details are outlined on the website, allowing drivers to know what to expect with each service, as well as which service may be the best fit for their vehicle.
Ultratune allows drivers to sign up to its VIP Club, which gives members discounts and more personalised service, making it a handy option for those looking to lock in regular services.
With today’s cars becoming more complex under the hood, it’s understandable to become a bit flustered when things go wrong, as is turning to the experts rather than tinkering around the engine yourself. As a result, trusting our mechanics becomes more crucial, although with 34% of survey respondents believing they have paid for repairs that they didn’t really need, trust can be hard for some.
To avoid creating trust issues, it’s best to research exactly what’s on offer, as most retailers now provide a range of servicing types, some of which may suit your needs more than others. While our ratings offer a high-level guide as to which servicing chains are rated highest in Australia, we would also suggest asking your friends and family about their personal experiences. Ask someone you trust, who they trust to service their car.
Ultimately, which car servicing chain you decide to visit will be an individual choice, as dropping your car off not only has to fit into your lifestyle, but may also depend on the age and brand of your vehicle. While car servicing can quickly turn into a large expense for some, it can be a small price to pay for peace of mind on the road, as well as ensure your car stays running for longer.
Canstar Blue surveyed 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have had their car serviced in the last 2 years by a car servicing chain – in this case, 590 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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