Do I need to service my lease car at a franchised dealer?

Will I have to get my lease car serviced at a franchised dealer?

When you lease a car, you have to get it serviced. Not only do you have to get it serviced, but you also have to get it serviced on time and at the recommended intervals. This is because when you return your lease vehicle, the leasing company will check your service history. But, do you have to get it serviced at a franchised dealer?

We understand that servicing and maintenance of the car is one of the most common worries for customers and we have educated thousands of customers on exactly what the obligations are with regards to servicing lease cars. Which is why we’re going to explain why you should get your car serviced at a franchised dealer.

Do I have to get my lease car serviced?

Yes, you absolutely have to get your lease car serviced. And you have to get it serviced regularly, at the right place.

Although you don’t own the car or the van you are leasing, you are still responsible for the upkeep. The leasing company wants the vehicle to be returned in a roadworthy condition, and if it isn’t, then you can incur extra charges. Which is why it’s important you get it serviced.

Man with hands on steering wheel

Do I have to get my lease car serviced at a franchised dealer?

When you get your lease car serviced, it’s recommended that you go to a franchised dealer to do so. You will find the required terms stated in your Finance Agreement.

Why do I have to get my lease car serviced at a franchised dealer?

There are quite a few reasons why you should get your lease car serviced at a franchised dealer, and they are for your benefit. I’m going to go into a bit more detail so you can understand exactly why you have to get your car serviced at a franchised dealer.

You can guarantee that the technicians are experienced

If you go to a franchised dealer, you can be sure that your technicians are going to be highly trained and have mountains of experience. Technicians at a franchised dealer will have access to the latest diagnostic equipment and genuine parts so you know that you’ll be getting a first-class experience. Not only that, but they can also record the service on the manufacturer’s database and in your servicing book.

Where can I get my car serviced?

As long as the dealership supply new vehicles of the same brand as your own, you can get your lease car serviced anywhere. All manufacturers have a wide network of dealerships who can service your car; there’s no rule that you must go back to the supply garage. This means that if you are away for business or if you’re on holiday, and you need your car servicing, the chances are you’ll be able to get it done straight away.

Will the quality of service be better at a franchised dealer?

There are many dealerships that will offer a collection and delivery service as well as a courtesy car for the duration of your lease cars service. Not only that, but there are some dealerships that will loan you a demonstrator model so you can start thinking about your next car.

Also, should your car need any outstanding recall work or software updates, going to a franchised dealer means that all of that will often be done without any extra charge to you.

Will it cost more to get it serviced at a franchised dealer?

Yes, it will, but it’s worth it.

When it comes to getting a service, you get what you pay for. If you don’t go to a franchised dealer and instead go somewhere offering it cheaper, how do you know you’re getting the best service? You don’t, and you probably aren’t.

If you don’t get your car serviced properly, then you could incur charges at the end of your lease agreement, and they could be significantly more than the money you saved by not going to a franchised dealer.

Person using calculator

How much will a service for my lease car cost?

The cost of servicing your lease car will depend entirely on the manufacturer and the model. This will also influence the time between services.

You may have to get your car serviced every 20,000 miles or two years, depending on which comes soonest. Or, you may have to get your car serviced every 12,500 miles, or once a year. There will also be cars that tell you when a service is due depending on how you drive, which is handy. But ultimately, how much servicing your lease car will cost is completely dependent on your situation.

An example of costs for a lease car service

To give you a rough idea of how much the servicing will cost if you go through a franchised dealer, we’ve provided an example of the servicing costs on a car roughly the size of a Honda Civic:

– First Service –  £150
– Second Service – £230
– Third Service – £150
– Fourth Service – £350

You can read our article on the servicing costs on a lease car here.

Should I get a Maintenance Agreement?

When thinking about servicing your lease car, it’s worth considering a maintenance agreement. If you have a longer contract or doing a higher mileage, then this is definitely something you should consider. A maintenance agreement will cover routine services as well as wear and tear items such as brake pads and wiper blades. Also, maintenance companies have significant buying power when it comes to labour costs and parts, so you could end up saving yourself a fair bit of money in the long run.

Ultimately, yes, you do have to get your car serviced at a franchised dealer. While it may cost you more money you will be safe in the knowledge that your car is being tended to by experienced, approved technicians who will have access to genuine parts and the latest equipment.

what is covered in a maintenance agreement
Rachel Richardson
  • 28th July 2016


  • barry shire| 1st December 2019 at 9:59 am Reply

    >> When you get your lease car serviced, it’s recommended that you go to a
    >> franchised dealer to do so.
    my local vw dealer insists on scrubbing the car with a bucket of water and gravel, even if you ask them not to. my supposedly new lease car is now covered in fine scratches all over the body and windscreen, plus the windscreen now has lovely scratch arcs where grit was legt on the wipers after being serviced. only a fool would take their car there for servicing.

    • Rachel Richardson| 2nd December 2019 at 2:00 pm Reply

      Hi Barry,

      Sorry to hear this. As we mention in the article, it is recommended, however, unless it is actually stated in writing in your lease agreement, it is only a recommendation.

  • Stan| 2nd October 2019 at 10:08 am Reply

    Very helpful!

  • s brown| 29th August 2019 at 8:25 pm Reply

    No where in the lease does it say I need to service the vehicle at the Dealership so is your advice based on dealership unfair practice or legal requirements?

    • Rachel Richardson| 30th August 2019 at 10:02 am Reply

      Thank you for your question on the requirements. In the article we mention it’s recommended you go to a franchised dealer to get your service carried out. However, there are other options. If it is a contractual requirement it will be stated in your finance agreement.

      We hope this helps.

  • lisa| 14th November 2018 at 12:01 pm Reply

    I think this is very bad advice lease cars can be serviced anywhere as long as the the origional parts are used, as for saying that franchises are better than independents you couldnt be more wrong generally independents offer a better service and have more knowlage and have all the equiptment to do diagnostics just like franchise. Terrible artical.

    • Rachel Richardson| 15th November 2018 at 9:18 am Reply

      Hi Lisa,
      Thank you for your comment. As you can see from the article, we are recommending that lease car owners visit a franchise for their scheduled service in order to avoid the risk of incurring charges at the end of a lease agreement. This is also to ensure that all parts used in any potential repairs are genuine.

  • Simon Croft| 25th July 2017 at 1:42 pm Reply

    Many inaccurate statements above, independent garages will always offer you better value for money and service, oh of course they’re much cheaper than a franchised dealer because you dont have to pay for staff sitting around, mahogany tables and marble floors.

    • Abbie Rawcliffe| 26th July 2017 at 8:27 am Reply

      Thanks Simon for your reply, yes we agree with you as we have said in the above article that it will cost more to get it serviced at a Franchised Dealer, we always take care of making sure our content is accurate, so could you email me at sales@osv.ltd.uk with the many errors so I can review this in the interest of our other readers. Really appreciate your feedback. Thank You.

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