Car maintenance myths that may be costing you more than you realise

Popular mistruths about vehicle servicing have taken too many unsuspecting drivers for a ride (literally!). We figured that it's time to clear the air — and save you unnecessary costs


"Men are better drivers than women"… "A flying cockroach could never make me lose control of the wheel"… You’ve heard these and many other myths about driving in your time on the road, and have probably come close to actually believing some of them. It's a similar picture with car maintenance, where a number of misconceptions abound, many of them with costly consequences to those who choose to believe these motor maintenance misbeliefs.
 

Myth: New cars don't need maintenance

Reality: You've signed a contract for quarterly servicing of your new home air-con system—and unlike your new wheels, it'll never be a potential road hazard

After a hefty down payment, road tax and insurance, you can be excused for wishing your car could give you a break and help you save a few pennies for maintenance since it's spanking new. After all, the latest car models do have advanced engineering that would require less servicing than those from 20 years ago.

While we can hope that the cars of the future will be almost maintenance-free, for now, you'll have to accept the fact that even new cars need oil changes, tyre rotations and other car care work done periodically. The extent of maintenance depends on your usage pattern. For instance, if you're constantly on the road, your brake pads could wear out faster. Check your car manual to determine the frequency and the kind of servicing it requires. Not giving your car regular care, whether to cut costs or for other reasons, ups your risk of vehicle breakdown and costly repair bills down the road.

Myth: My car distributor's workshop has more advanced equipment, so it's the best choice

Reality: Your loyalty is commendable, but when it comes to equipment and resources, distributor and independent workshops are on par. What you should be looking for is quality and what’s convenient for you

Contrary to popular belief, many independent workshops are armed with the right equipment to assess your vehicle. All of Aviva's approved workshops have diagnostics and repair equipment for all forms of vehicle damage, so you can rest assured that your car is in safe hands. The great thing is that there is a long list of reliable workshops on the panel, so no matter where your car breaks down, you'll find a panel workshop nearby for quick and convenient servicing, saving you precious time!

Myth: The only way to ensure original parts for my car is to send it to my distributor's workshop

Reality: Seriously, it's an open market!

There are absolutely no restrictions on workshops procuring original parts. Any workshop is free to order original car parts, which would come from the same parts supplier for distributor workshops.
 

Myth: My warranty will be void if car servicing is done at an independent workshop

Reality: That’d be unfair punishment! Your car manufacturer can’t bind your hands and feet

Your car manufacturer cannot force you to have maintenance works done at a workshop of its choosing. You have the freedom of choice when it comes to deciding which workshop to get your car servicing done at, and your car warranty would be valid until its expiration even if you chose to have it serviced at another workshop. From 31 December 2017, all leading car dealers may only void car warranties or reject claims if they establish that the damage or defect to be claimed is in fact caused by the independent workshop. Thus, you needn't fret about your warranty being cancelled for sending your vehicle to a panel workshop, as long as it's for general repair work that does not involve mechanical parts.

Myth: Engine oil needs to be changed after every 5,000 kilometres

Reality: This industry standard has been taken off the road for a while

Newer car releases can go beyond 16,000 kilometres between oil changes. This is partly due to higher quality oil. To be sure, however, it is advisable to consult your mechanic or check your car manual to see what the manufacturer recommends.

Myth: Going to my friend's workshop means cost savings and assurance that my car will be fine

Reality: Leaving your car in the hands of a friend doesn't always mean it's getting the best care

For their personal convenience, many car owners go with the workshop owned by a friend or one that has been recommended by a peer, usually because it’s cheap or the owner is a known party and thus could not possibly do anything wrong. Besides, it saves them the hassle of mechanic hunting. But if you've spent a fortune on your car, is maintaining friendly ties and saving cost really more important than giving your vehicle the best servicing for prime performance and your safety? You'll have to do a bit of research to find a workshop that is certified and with properly trained mechanics.

The car workshops on Aviva's panel have been chosen because of their good track record, eliminating the hassle of extensive legwork. Furthermore, all panel workshops offer 12 months' repair warranty, a simplified claims process, no double excess and new original parts replacement for cars within manufacturer warranty period. Plus, they are recognised by leading insurers in Singapore for their expertise and service. Now, that’s going the extra mile to keep your car primed for performance!


Get S$150 vouchers when you insure your brand new car with Aviva! Click here to get a quote.

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