Tag Archives: Car Maintenance

4 Ways To Cover The Cost Of Unexpected Car Repairs

4 Ways To Cover The Cost Of Unexpected Car Repairs

Unexpected repairs are just part of being a car owner, and your car isn’t going to wait until it is convenient before it breaks down. This can be a big problem because repairs are incredibly expensive and if you don’t have the money to pay for them, you could find yourself in some financial trouble. You rely on your car, so you can’t just leave it, which means that you need to find the money from somewhere. The good news is, there are ways that you can cover the cost without completely ruining your finances. If you are hit with unexpected car repairs that you can’t really afford, here’s what you can do. 

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Shop Around 

Before you start thinking about how you are going to find the money, it’s important that you shop around for the best price. The cost of repairs varies a lot depending on the mechanic, and some mechanics will try to rip you off if they suspect that you don’t really know what is wrong with the car. If you want to make the cost more manageable, you need to shop around and compare prices. You should also check out reviews of local mechanics so you can find somebody that you know is going to be reliable. 

Get a Repayment Plan 

A lot of people don’t realize that you can get a repayment plan to help you pay for your car repairs. Companies like Optimal Warranty offer auto repair payment plans, so you can get the repairs done and then pay it off in installments over the coming months. This makes it so much more manageable and you can fit it into your budget, rather than rushing around trying to find a big lump sum from somewhere. 

Do Repairs Yourself 

In some cases, you may be able to do the repairs yourself. When you first buy a new car, you should spend some time looking through the manual and learning the basics of how the engine works. You are not a mechanic so there will be a lot of things that you cannot do, but if you spend some time learning, you may be able to do simple repairs on your own. This saves you a lot of money and even if you do have to go to a mechanic, knowing a bit about your car will make it harder for them to rip you off. 

Get a Loan 

 If none of the other options on this list are possible, you may need to get a loan. You should always exhaust all of the other possibilities before you do this, and if you need to get a loan, make sure that you avoid payday loans with crazy interest rates. It’s much better to put the money on a credit card or take out a loan from the bank so you are only paying a reasonable amount of interest. 

Unexpected car repairs can throw you a financial curveball, but these are all great ways to cover the cost without ruining your budget. 

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How To Choose Your Next Car

How To Choose Your Next Car

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When you are buying a car you will be faced with a lot of different decisions that you will need to make. The car you choose is a major financial commitment. Ideally, you will want a car that will last you for a while, and one that will be cost-effective, and reliable. In order to make the right decisions, you will need to weight quite a bit up. 

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A major decision that you will need to make is whether you are going to buy a new or used model. Both have their advantages and their disadvantages, and you will need to make the decision based on your own personal situation. 

New cars will come with a manufacturers guarantee. Although things can go wrong with new cars, they are generally covered for anything major. This means that you should not have to worry about dealing with any big maintenance issues anytime soon. 

The downside to a new car is that it will very quickly lose its value. Within the first year, it will have lost the biggest percentage of the price you paid for it. 

A used car, on the other hand, can vary dramatically in terms of quality and price. Once a car is more than a couple of years old, it will have dropped in value considerably and this is often a good time to buy. 

Used cars may have maintenance issues and you obviously don’t have the benefit of the manufacturer’s warranty to fall back on. Any repairs with the vehicle will need to paid for by you. 

Check Insurance Before You Buy

Whether you plan on buying your car new or used, you will need to get the vehicle insured before you are allowed to drive it. But insurance costs can vary dramatically. Get a few quotes before you commit to buying the vehicle, as if the cost for that vehicle is too high, you may end up being out of your budget. Get quotes from a number of places and check out transparent Metromile customer reviews to ensure you are happy with the insurer. 

Road Testing The Vehicle

Whichever car you are considering, you need to road test it. You need to feel comfortable behind the steering wheel. Making sure that the car is right for you is vital. 

If you are buying a used car, your road test will let you know if there are any problems with the vehicle that you should be aware of. Listen out for strange knocking or grinding sounds, see how the car turns in the road, make sure that it sits evenly on the road and doesn’t seem abnormally bumpy when driven. The more situations you can test the car in the better. Try a few manoeuvres and drive the vehicle at a range of different speeds. The last thing that you want is to miss a glaring problem that ends up costing as much as the car to get fixed.  

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4 Mind-Changing Features Of Electric Cars You Didn’t Know’

4 Mind-Changing Features Of Electric Cars You Didn’t Know’

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If you’re a petrolhead, the idea of an electric car won’t appeal. There isn’t enough romanticism like there is with a traditional combustion engine. You might not be a car-enthusiast either, yet you still won’t buy one because the price tag is pretty steep. Anyway, you’ve heard bad things about electric cars that put you off investing in one.

Let’s face it – nobody wants to stop ten times on a short trip to recharge the battery. It’s ludicrous! However, as they’re starting to make their way into the market, it’s essential to understand the ins and outs of electric vehicles before dismissing. After all, you might find that what you believe to be weaknesses are strengths, or that they were myths all along.

With that in mind, check out the features of electric cars that you didn’t know below. Any of the following might change your mind and revolutionize your lifestyle.

You Shouldn’t Worry About Charging The Battery

Probably the biggest problem you think you’ll have is charging the battery regularly. The idea of stopping off every thirty minutes isn’t a good one, and it’s tempting to believe the hype. However, it’s nothing more than a myth, and the stats back this up pretty convincingly.

For starters, a standard electric car battery can go over 200 miles before it needs plugging in. And, that’s not at the top end of the scale. Some models, such as the Model 3 Tesla, average out at 300-plus miles. In comparison, your daily mileage is likely to be fewer than 50 miles. So, you can theoretically go all week (almost) without having to recharge the battery.

Mileage does differ depending on the vehicle, so be sure to double-check before you drive it off the lot.

But If You Are, You Can Plan Accordingly

The rebuttal to the mileage argument is that everything changes when you go on long journeys, and the last thing you want is to run out of juice in the middle of nowhere. If there isn’t a charge point, which could be the case if you’re not in a liberal state, there’s not much you can do to rectify the situation.

Thankfully, there’s no reason to take any risks with a Tesla route planner. All you have to do is to input your trip into the system and let it show you where the best chargers are along the way. As long as you don’t take any detours, you’ll know exactly where and when to stop in case of an emergency. You might think it’s more effort than a typical car, yet the same thing can happen if you’re not prepared.

EVs encourage you to be more organized and efficient, and those aren’t bad things!

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Maintenance Costs Should Be Lower

One thing all motorists hate is the expense of running a car. It’s the reason why some drivers turn to motorbikes! If paying a couple of grand up front wasn’t enough, you can also expect to shell out thousands more during the length of your ownership. Sadly, traditional vehicles tend to breakdown, and you need to repair yours if you want it back on the roads.

What’s fantastic about EVs is that they are more energy-efficient. This is because they use regenerative braking to funnel power back to the battery. A side-effect of this is that braking is a lot more gentle, and, therefore, the brakes won’t suffer from wear and tear as much. Usually, these factors aren’t covered by warranties, so you have to pay for the repairs out of your pocket. 

With an electric car, the fact that the brakes are less worn means there’s no need to worry about expensive maintenance bills.

Speed Isn’t An Issue

Going fast isn’t common because roads are lined with cars and limits prevent motorists from driving dangerously. Still, you might like the idea of putting your foot down and racing away into the night. With an electric vehicle, you can do it as you would normally. 

If anything, some EVs are quicker than standard cars. Tesla’s ‘Insane’ and ‘Ludicrous’ modes let it hit 60 mph in less than 3.5 seconds. The reason it’s worth mentioning is down to weight. You might be aware that electric cars are heavier as they involve more complicated and bulky materials. Regardless, it has no bearing on speed whatsoever, and you’ll still be able to put the pedal to the metal if you feel that way inclined.

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Electric cars are new, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to take away from your experience. Wouldn’t you want a vehicle that is fast, efficient, and affordable to run?

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Prepping Car For the Winter Ahead

Prepping Car For the Winter Ahead


Winter conditions can cause hazardous roadways. But forgetting to prep your car for the season ahead can cause some headaches along with some potential hazards.

Check the fluids



Make sure your car has all its fluids. Running out of oil can be detrimental to the car. Although, running out of windshield washer fluid can be just as scary when your windshield is covered with salt and sludge splashed across your window while traveling down a highway.

If you are unsure of what fluids are needed or where they go, stop by to see a local mechanic or visita full service has station. They can certainly help.

Check your lights



This might be a two person job… But be sure to check all of the lights on the car. Winter can bring dark nights, fog and snowy whiteouts. Replace any lights that aren’t working. And be sure your headlights are shine l shining as bright as possible. Use the headlight cleaner solution, or to bring your headlights back to peek condition look into headlight restoration wipes.

Check your tires

Check your tire tread before winter to prevent sliding. Using the penny test will help tell you if you need new tires. Insert a penny, Abe’s head facing dow into the tread, if you can see the top of Abe Lincoln’s head you probably need new tires.

Pack the trunk



Making sure the trunk has the usual… Spare tire, jumper cables, flares, extra fluids, etc is important. But in the winter make sure you also pack a blanket, gloves, snow pants, rock salt or cat litter, water and snacks just in case you get stuck somewhere. Some folks recommend a small snow shovel and tire chains depending where you live or travel.

Prepping the car for winter doesn’t have to be over extensive like, detailing the paint job or coating the under carriage. Those are personal preferences. But all cars need a little prep to help prevent certain potential hazards. Have a safe and happy season!

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Sedan Wars: Have The Japanese Trumped The Germans?

Sedan Wars: Have The Japanese Trumped The Germans?

For about 5 years now, the crossover has ruled the roost. This concept is quite frankly, one of the best that the automobile industry has ever invented. Somebody decided it was a good idea to merge the family SUV with a hatchback. Whoever they are, you can bet on it that they were given a raise and a promotion. It’s been an amazing seller, because families have the headroom of an SUV as well as the wheelbase and height, but they have a generally smaller or compact frame than a traditional SUV. Inherently they have a sportier feel, drive great on the highways but feel just as at home in the city. So why on earth would you want a sedan these days? The sedan is not like the SUV or hatchback, it’s perhaps the original family car. Long, spacious and fun to drive, here’s why the sedan is not taking the rise of the crossover lying down.

Aerodynamics and style

A number of sedan models have always been a top choice for car owners. Jaguar’s XF has held the title of kind of the sedans since 2010, but it’s more of a premium option. The Italian’s joined the fight with the Alfa Romeo Guilla, a 503bhp monster with a thumping 3.0-liter V6. The Germans improved their Mercedes A-class and Audi A6 but the overall design has become a bit stale. The Japanese however, have perhaps came out with a world-beater in the Mazda 3. These models can be found in specialist dealer websites like https://www.rentonmazda.com/ as well as some of Mazda’s convertible sports cars. They have the highly praised 2019 Mazda 3 which comes in a 2.5-liter inline 4-cylinder engine. With an automatic transmission and a miles per gallon performance of 26 in the city and 35 on the highway, it seems to have the complete package.

Germany’s big brother

For a long time, there has been a competition of who can wear the crown of best sedan. In many people’s opinion, the Jaguar XF has been the champion for almost 10 years. The previous champion which also wore the crown for 10 years was the BMW M5. Now it seems like the brand has come to the conclusion that this model has seen it’s best days and decided to make it’s jewel, the M6. The BMW 6-series is a large and longer big brother to the 5-series. It’s been given the name ‘gran-coupe’ but we all know it’s a sedan. It’s a shame because it originally was a coupe and was seen as BMW’s answer to the Audi A5. it’s not meant to be a sedan from the ground up, so it’s got cramped interior, horrible fuel economy and a wide body. On the plus side it’s got performance, high-quality upholstery and great handling. It pays a price for it’s good looks with less room on the inside.

Japan has such a great history of car manufacturing, it’s nice to see the Mazda name make a big comeback. The German’s still make fantastic cars, but sedans might not be their best class at the moment.

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How To Prepare Your Car For Any Weather Conditions

How To Prepare Your Car For Any Weather Conditions

Sometimes, it’s hard for us to put off driving if we need to be somewhere and when the weather conditions are pretty bad, it’s daunting to have your car on the road. So here is how to prepare your car for any driving conditions so that you’re safe no matter what.

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Inspect And Replace Any Windshield Wipers

The windshield wipers are important because it’s going to work at keeping your vision of the road clear at all times. Windshield wipers that are old and don’t go fast enough could certainly make your car more dangerous to drive. So be sure to check your wipers before going onto the road and if they’re not performing like they used to, get them replaced sooner rather than later.

Get The Right Type Of Tires

Tires keep your vehicle rolling along on the ground and depending on the time of year, it’s always a good idea to purchase tires that are right for that season in particular. There’s a difference between summer tires and winter tires in terms of the tread depth and the rubber itself. You want to make sure that the tires that you have on your car are going to maintain your safety and no jeopardize it. It’s also wise to have a spare tire in the trunk of your car for emergencies.

Keep To A Safe Speed

Your speed is an important factor in keeping you and your passengers safe. It can be easy to ignore or forget speed limits in certain areas. You don’t want to be caught out with a speeding ticket so keep an eye on your speed at all times. Be wary of other drivers on the road and don’t be tempted to try and keep with up those who are trying to outrun you. Always keep track of your speed in a new area and be conscious of extreme weather conditions and adapting your speed to cater for this.

Have Your Car Serviced

Just like anything, a car depreciates, and that means it’s more likely to encounter issues as it gets older. Therefore, it’s important that you get your car serviced on an annual basis and to be aware of any dramatic changes in your car’s performance. You’ll come to learn how your car drives and sounds when it’s healthy. If it’s not, then it’s good to get it checked, especially during harsher weather conditions.

Carry A Car Breakdown Kit

And finally, always carry a car breakdown kit. With certain weather conditions, you cannot predict if and when your car will break down and having something to help yourself in a situation where it happens is useful. Some things to include in your car breakdown kit is a spare tire, the relevant contact details of a breakdown company. A charger port for your phone for emergency power. An ice scraper and some sort of defroster. A flashlight and jumper cables will be handy too. 

Follow these tips to prepare your car for any weather conditions and to keep you and your family safe.

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feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

What Not to Do After a Car Accident

What Not to Do After a Car Accident

Car accidents are horrible. Whether you were driving or the passenger, whether it was your fault or someone else’s, it’s awful. It’s scary, even if it’s a relatively minor incident where there’s not much damage, and no one is injured, having to get out of the car, speak to the other party and assess the situation is frightening. It’s not something that any of us are ever prepared for, and it’s never taught in driving school. It can be terrifying, and most of us just want to get home and find some comfort. 

Of course, if you are injured, your next steps might be dictated. But, in most cases, the incident is minor, and we can just carry on. But, because of the scariness of the situation, many people don’t do the right things. They panic, and they make mistakes. Here are some of the things that you SHOULDN’T do after a road accident. 

Drive Off

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You should never just drive away from an accident. Even if no one has seen and everything seems fine, you need to stop the car. If another party is involved, you need to swap license and insurance details and if necessary call the police and an ambulance. It can be a good idea to call the police even if you don’t think it’s that bad, just in case. Failing to stop the car after an accident is a crime, and the punishment can be severe, depending on the nature and results of the crash. It’s always best to stop!

Get Angry

The worst thing that you can do is get out of the car and start screaming and shouting. It could affect your passenger in car accident settlement later on, or mean that you get yourself in trouble. At the very least it will make a tense situation a lot worse. Even if the other party was clearly at fault, and you are raging, take a few seconds to breathe deeply before getting out of your car to speak with them. Be as calm as you possibly can, and if you feel your temper rising, walk away for a few moments, or wait for the police to arrive before carrying on the conversation. 

Forget to Take Details

Sometimes, accidents are very minor. Someone might crash into you in a car park, or while moving very slowly in traffic. These tend to occur during a brief lapse in concentration and don’t tend to cause much damage. You might see only a few small scratches and think it’s not worth swapping details. But, the damage might be more than you can see. You should still swap license and insurance details, even if you think it will go no further. 

Drive as Normal

Even after one of these minor bumps, you should take your car into the garage to be checked. You never know what damage you might not be able to see, which could be making your vehicle unsafe, or becoming a much more costly problem while you are driving. Get it checked out even if it seems fine. 

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The Girl’s Guide To Car Maintenance

The Girl’s Guide To Car Maintenance

There’s nothing more infuriating as a woman than standing in the garage while a mechanic tries to overcharge you for repairs to your car, because he assumes you don’t know anything about it. Instead of having to phone your brother, or accept your husband’s mocking, every time your engine is making a strange noise, learn some basic car maintenance tips, so you can be in charge of your own car. 

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Learn The Basics

There are some basic maintenance tasks that all cars need on a regular basis. Learning how to do them yourself will save you money instead of paying a professional, or will save you the embarrassment of having to ask for help. 

Learn how to top up your washer fluid. This is a really simple task once you’ve identified where the fluid goes, and will take less than a minute to do. Learn how to check your tire pressure. In most cars, you’ll find a sticker on the driver’s side door which tiles you what your tire pressure should be. Unscrew the air cap on the tire and press the gauge into the slot. Easy. 

Another simple task is checking your oil level. All you do is slide the dipstick out of the engine. Wipe it clean, and pop it back. Lift it back out and see where the oil level is. There should be some guidelines on the stick to show you where to look. If it’s low, just top up the oil tank. 

Learn How To Change A Flat Tire

Don’t end up stranded at the side of the road with a flat tire and no idea how to change it. If you don’t have a spare tire, get one, and store it safely in the car. Ask someone to teach you how to change it, or find a guide on YouTube. You might find yourself very grateful of the skill one day! 

Learn To Jump Start

Accidentally left a light on in the car overnight and now can’t get the engine to start. First, check the battery is actually the problem. To do this, check to see if the headlights or any interior lights come on. If they don’t, the battery is probably dead. 

To jump start a car, you’ll need a second car with a working battery. Check the location of the battery in each car, and then park the cars close together. Turn off everything in both cars. With your jumper cables, attach the red clips to the positive terminal of the battery (it’ll have POS or a plus sign on it). Attach one black clip to the negative terminal of the working battery. Attach the other black slip to an unpainted metal surface on the car. The strut that holds up the hood is ideal. Start the working car and let the engine run for a few minutes. Try your engine. If it doesn’t work, check the connections and let the other engine run for five minutes before trying again. 

Buy The Right Gas

Filling your with good quality gas will prolong its life. Choose gas from a trusted company whenever you fill up. 

Try to avoid letting the tank get less than a quarter full. The gas tank can get sediment inside it, and letting the car run too empty runs the risk of that sediment getting into the fuel filter. 

Keep Things Clean

Caring for your car will help it last longer. Make sure you clean the car inside and out, even in winter, to get rid of dirt buildup. If you have a leather interior, care for it with proper leather conditioner to keep it supple and in good condition. 

Keep an old blanket or towels in the car to protect your interior if you ever need to move anything dirty, whether that’s picking up second hand furniture or driving home with the dog after a muddy walk. 

Know When It’s Time To Call A Professional

While it’s important to know how to take the best care of your car, it’s also important to know when you’re beaten. If you’re not sure how to do something, always take your car to a mechanic instead of trying to fix the problem yourself. This is much safer for you and your car. For things like transmission repair, engine repairs or anything else you’re not sure about, call in the professionals.  

Knowing how to look after your own car is very rewarding and will help you keep your car in top condition, without having to rely on others. 

Tia, and TipsfromTia.com  is trying to keep you looking good and
feeling good, from the inside out. If you’ve got a problem or a tip email me! Be sure to Like and share on Facebook or Follow on Twitter or Instagram.

3 Fantastic Cars For A Growing Family

3 Fantastic Cars For A Growing Family

With your family growing all the time, you need to make sure that you have the provisions in place to accommodate this. We don’t just mean the basics such as food and clothing, but your car must also be taken into consideration. Your car isn’t going to be much use to you anymore if you don’t have enough room to fit all the members of your family inside. That is why we have written this article, to give you some awesome ideas of fantastic cars for a growing family. Keep reading to find our suggestions!

Toyota Sienna

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It’s likely the case that the first thing you think of when you hear the word family is a minivan. If this is true for you, then the Toyota Sienna is an excellent minivan option. When you need a lot of room, a bigger vehicle is going to be necessary and you can’t go wrong with this Toyota model. If you need to, the seats in the vehicle can be moved to give you more room which will be handy if you are going on a trip somewhere and need to fit a load of luggage, as well as your family in there!

You will also find that this has been cleverly designed to be low to the ground. The benefit of this is that your children will be able to climb in and out of this minivan without much difficulty. This is sure to make the loading your family into the car process a lot easier!

Honda Accord

Whether you are looking for a cool grey or a stunning blue, the Honda Accord can accommodate your color choice. Some families like to let their little ones choose the color of the car which is why Honda ensured that they had a wide range of options available. But, aside from the color of the vehicle, we are sure that you are going to be interested in other aspects such as the safety features equipped! The first one is that there is a rear view camera fitted so that you are getting the best view possible when reversing. While we are on the topic of safety, the Accord also has a blind spot warning to ensure that everyone in the car stays safe, even in the places you can’t see.

As an added bonus, the Accord has heated leather seats so that you and your family can keep warm on those chilly days! Whether you are completing the school run or you are going to be in the car for a while, everyone is going to be comfortable in this family car.

Nissan Rogue

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Are you a fan of Nissan? If you are, then you are probably familiar with the technology that most of their cars are equipped with these days. Nissan has built up a reputation for being tech-friendly over the years, so if this is something that you care about, this awesome SUV might be the choice for you.

Space is obviously going to be essential, which is why there is enough room for you, all your children and some luggage in this car! There are rows of seats which will keep everyone comfortable throughout even the longest journey!

We hope that you have found this article helpful and now have a few options when it comes to getting a new car for a growing family.

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Repairing Your BMW

Repairing Your BMW

Every vehicle requires frequent servicing, with most companies recommending a service every six months or every 3,000 miles on the clock – whatever comes first. The type of service you need depends on your car; the make of it, how old it is, how long it has been since your last service and how many miles you have driven.

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It is essential that you take the time and consideration to seek a reputable and high-quality mechanic company in order to ensure that you benefit from the service you require and that your car performs to the optimum level. This blog post will provide information on finding the best company for BMW servicing specifically.

It is essential that you get your BMW car serviced frequently so that it operates to its optimum level and so that you do not suffer a lack of reliability. Moreover, if you fail to service your vehicle on a regular basis then you are likely to be faced with extortionate repair bills, thus don’t think by avoiding servicing you are saving money.

So, what should you consider when seeking the best company for your BMW servicing requirements?

Complete and thorough service

A lot of people book a service without having an insight into what the technicians are actually going to do to their vehicle. This is because a lot of individuals assume that all services are the same. Yet this couldn’t be further from the truth, you need to make sure you have a full understanding of what services they are going to perform so that you know what you are paying for and whether you are benefiting from a thorough service. The different services you should be looking out for are the likes of; plugs changed, water checked, tyres checked, BMW oil filter change and alike.

BMW trained technicians

All cars are different; they require different services, different parts, and different tools. Therefore it is highly recommended that you seek mechanics that have been trained to service BMW cars specifically. By doing this you ensure that your car receives a servicing which is of the highest standard and that no accidents occur. After all, if the person in question has not been trained in this brand of car then they could easily utilise or fit a part which is incompatible.

Price

The cost of the BMW servicing is obviously an important factor because you want to make sure that it is something which you can comfortably afford. You should look around and compare different prices in order to find a good deal. Nevertheless, it is important to be mindful of going for something which is alarmingly cheap because this could signify a lack of quality or an incomplete service.

If you consider the three points mentioned in this article then you should be able to find the best company for your BMW servicing. Make sure you seek to have your vehicle serviced on a regular basis so that your car performs to optimum level.

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