United Garage Services

Who can service a brand-new car?

by Approved Garages | 14 Aug 2018

Have you purchased a new car from a franchise dealer in the past three years? Were you told that service and repair work can only be carried out at your main dealer, or that your warranty would be void? Approved Garages sets the record straight.

Who can repair or service your new car?

European Union competition law is put in place to stop anti-competitive practices and exploitation of companies' overriding market positions. But, in recognition of the unique technical complexity of their products, the motor industry has – since 1995 – enjoyed a thing known as 'block exemption' from some aspects of competition law.

Right to choose – independent garages have access to technical data and car repair information

When the independent 'Right to Repair Campaign' finally succeeded in having the Block Exemption Regulations renewed and improved, it ensured that technical data and workshop procedures remained available for all cars – even new ones! It's now known as 'Your Car Your Choice' or 'Right2Choose' - it is all about informing motorists that they can take their vehicle, irrespective of age, to any independent, franchised or dealer garage.

By securing access to technical and repair information the Block Exemption Regulation helps to:

  • Lower repair costs for motorists
  • Deliver security for independent garages and specialists such as auto-electricians, air conditioning specialists and body repairers
  • Certify you don't have to wait too long or travel too far for servicing or repairs
  • Enables everyone who to service a new car

You are not obliged to have your car serviced by a franchised dealer

Changes to the Block Exemption Regulation in 2002 comprised clauses planned to increase choice when it comes to servicing of a new car. You cannot be obliged e.g. as a condition of warranty, to have your car serviced by a franchised dealer.

The work can be carried out by an independent garage if that garage uses manufacturer approved parts and appropriately follows the manufacturer's service schedule. The reason why many motorists prefer going to a local garage, is not only due to convenience of being in the vicinity, but also because independent garages generally have much lower overheads than franchised dealers so their hourly labour rate is cheaper.

Approved Garages on our network use manufacturer approved parts or matching quality parts and that is why servicing or repairing your car at any one of our garages will not void your car’s warranty!