it a rip off.. - clachnacudden
I recently went in to get my 20,000 mile (Diesel)service done at my local Pug dealer and came out for a bill of £230...for basically an oil change.

Why does it cost so much for so little (I even had to ask nicely to get my tyres rotated).

Is it me or is it just a dealer rip off? it a rip off.. - Andrew-T
Yes, it is a dealer rip-off, because you could get the work done for half or less at any decent independent; except of course you don't want to invalidate a warranty. Maybe the dealer does a fault-code check which needs special equipment, but £230 seems a bit steep. it a rip off.. - eMBe {P}
.. came out for a bill of £230...for basically an oil change. ..>>

As Victor Meldrew would say "I don't believe it". it a rip off.. - PR {P}
I would agree, but diesels are far worse than petrols. My girlfriend and I both have Alfas, I ve got a 156 GTA, she has a 147 JTD. THe 12k service for the GTA (3.2 petrol, fully synth oil) costs £150, the 147 JTD (1.9 Unijet 8V) costs £225.
How the hell they work these prices out is beyond me! it a rip off.. - Aprilia
Dealers are not making much on new car sales these days - especially with so many people buying through brokers and supermarkets. They are having to make all their money on spares and servicing. it a rip off.. - PhilW
Could you ask for an itemised bill and see where you are being ripped off? My little independent bloke always puts the prioice of everything on the bill down to sump washer for 20p (That's a bit steep!) At least I know exactly what I am paying for. I haven't had experience of main dealers for many a tear. (Oops, I mean "year") it a rip off.. - henry k
My little independent bloke always puts the
price of everything on the bill down to sump washer for
20p (That's a bit steep!) At least I know exactly what
I am paying for. I haven't had experience of main dealers
for many a tear. (Oops, I mean "year")

20p!!! As recommended by Mr Haynes I got a new sump plug for the Focus oil change. Cost £3.30 plus vat. All I needed was the washer but said washer is only available with plug. Its just an ordinary looking a rubber washer. I at least expected it to be glued in its groove but the old one was not. Nothing special about the plug. The Ford filter was only £5.01 plus vat making the washer seem even more expensive.
Never the less I was pleased to have taken Haynes advice as the old washer was damaged.
Total cost of the DIY oil change was £31.27, which may be expensive but no worries about the specifications of parts and oil. No queries when time to sell.
Not happy with a horizontal filter in the back of the engine.
Surely in this day and age the filter can be positioned better. it a rip off.. - daryld
I found that after 60,000 miles my Seat Arosa diesel, which was main dealer serviced, had never had the air or fuel filter replaced even though the service book stated that this should be done every 40,000 miles.

Execept for keeping the warranty intact it is not worth the money letting a main stealership, oops, I meant dealership, loose on your car.

I bought a haynes manual. I do the routine stuff and a local (reliable, sensible value and honest) diesel specialist does all the fiddly stuff; for everything else it is a matter of 'if it aint broke then do not fix it'. The money I save will be put towards future repair bills. it a rip off.. - carlh
My petrol Golf 2.0 has just had it's 20K service at my local VW dealership for £127. Dealer parts/servicing has never been cheap but there is much less profit in selling new cars than there used to be just a few years ago. The manufacturers are requiring increasing levels of investment by the owners and net returns are little more than you could get at the building society. The money has to come from somewhere. it a rip off.. - andymc {P}
I'm probably not doing too badly then - my Seat Leon TDi cost £116 including new wipers at the 20k service, although the price list on the board at the dealership indicated £120 for the service alone. Even better, the 30k service last month is listed at £150, but the dealer took it down to £100 on the button. Everything that was supposed to be done was done, plus the creaky dash was sorted out (for another week or so, anyway - silicon spray scheduled for Thursday). On the other hand, the Passat cost £118 just for the filter change - I supplied the oil.
andymc it a rip off.. - HF
Ok, I figured you'd all had a bit of a break and it's time for another inept HF question again.

Could someone please explain what exactly is included in 'a service'?

I had my oil changed a while back - was that a service? - because the thread's author seems to be implying so. And that's a bit scarey because my oil change was under £20.

If not, what should be expected in a proper service?

I need to get my car properly serviced very soon as it has been doing many miles, so I would be very grateful for a comprehensive list of 'must do's' and 'should do's', as well as 'think about it's'.

Sorry if I am seeming to hijack the thread, just kind of need to know the necessities now that my car has been doing more mileage than usual.

Apologies again, I should probably post this elsewhere, but whilst on the subject, does anyone know a reason why every time my car does a long (600 mile plus) journey, the clutch hits against the floor noisily, for a couple of days after the journey, before returning to normal, and the other pedals feel looser? HWMO told me it was because I was suddenly pressing the pedals wrong, but it's not the case. It's just every time it goes up north the car behaves erratically for a few days.

Sorry that's totally off-topic - I would be obliged if Dave, Mark or Alan could move it somewhere more appropriate if and when they have a mo.

HF it a rip off.. - Andrew-T
HF - if your car has a service/warranty booklet in the glovebox, it should set it all out for you (though you may find it a bit confusing). Oil and filter is usually the most frequent item, followed by air or fuel filters, brake fluid and coolant changes, and finally airbags (every 10 years if car lasts that long). Depends what falls due when. it a rip off.. - puntoo
last service for my Fiat Punto 1.2 was £160 quid (franchised dealer). Lots of squirting of oil around the door hinges and a change of oil, plugs and filter.

Prior to that Golf GTI was £190 (franchised dealer again). But at least I got a nice courtesy car.

I am not looking forward to the Renault Scenic service in January. it a rip off.. - HF

Thank you for that.

Unfortunately I have no booklet - I got the car from a family member, who also has no deep history of the car.

However, I had the oil and filter done, as recommended by this site. When I had my MOT done a while back (June I think) the garage guy said he had done 'all the necessary fluid changes'.

I think in hindsight that he probably just did a few top-ups - being on this site is certainly showing me a few things, even if I'm still incredibly naive.

I guess oil and filter will be due again soon, as will cambelt? I had no knowledge of the air or fuel filters, although I did know that at some point brake fluid and coolant must be changed - although I had no idea this was a regular thing.

As for airbags - I don't have 'em! Car is too old but I still love it!

But I appreciate this no end, Andrew. It really is appreciated.

If I have any further worries, would it be ok for me to ask the mods to forward my email addy on to you? Of course I will also understand if that is not ok.

Regards all,

HF it a rip off.. - clachnacudden
Any discussion points welcome HF on this board..

The Author it a rip off.. - PhilW
I think I'm right in saying that Haynes manuals also have a "service schedule" in the front - everything from weekly checks (oil, tyres etc) to what should be done every 5k, 10k etc. Might be worth investing in one (second hand on e-bay?) or you might find it in your local library? even if you don't buy a new one. Unlike the car's sevice manual it tells you how to do the checks so would be ideal for a competent DIYer like yourself!!! it a rip off.. - andymc {P}
HF, another reason it's costing some of us so much is because of paying a franchised dealer to do the servicing in order to maintain a warranty. £70 of my £118 service bill was labour costs. Ok, it is sometimes possible to get a (for instance) VW specialist to do the work if there is one in your area, but there isn't any near me.

Once a car is out of warranty it can still be worth maintaining a dealer service history so you can point to it when eventually selling the car on, but as the car gets older and depreciates more the benefit of the dealer history versus the cost of maintaining it starts to diminish - it won't make such a difference to a £3k saloon that it's worth continuing to pay £100+ for. I wouldn't be too concerned if a 6 year old car I was interested in buying had a dealer service history for the first 5 years only - I should be able to check whether a car has been reasonably well cared for after that point by looking at receipts, giving it a thorough going over (as HJ recommends) and/or paying for an inspection.

By the way - HWMO = He Who Must Obey? Poor Rob ....
andymc it a rip off.. - expat

Don't miss the fluid changes - they really are important. I got cheap and stretched my two year coolant service on a Nissan I used to have. The alloy motor started to corrode. It didn't matter how often I flushed the coolant after that it still came out brown with corrosion. You really need to get the coolant changed every two years if you have an alloy engine. Changing the brake fluid regularly is also important for the same reason. Brake fluid takes up moisture from the atmosphere and this causes corrosion in your brake lines. Not what you want when your life might depend on your brakes.


Expat it a rip off.. - Andrew-T
HF - if you think I can help, I'm flattered! But I haven't 'asked that my profile be hidden', I just haven't bothered to set one up. By all means get my E-address, but RichardW has entered the basics lower down on this thread. You could always try to get hold of a Vx handbook for your car if Rob won't buy you a Haynes manual.
Servicing schedule - eMBe {P}

1. Try

2. or search google (selecting "the web" option) for car maintenance tips schedule.

3. As already suggsted, get a Haynes Manual for the Astra. Haynes Link is on the top right. That will also bring up offers for "The Man Manual" for HMWO!

MAN - The Haynes Owners Workshop Manual
by Dr Ian Banks
120,000BC to Present Day. All models, shapes, sizes and colours. The Man Manual is a step-by-step guide to men's health.
Man Manual covers all models

Servicing schedule - RichardW

Typically a 'service schedule' might be:

6 months / 6000 miles
Oil and filter, visual check of lights, tyres, underneath of car etc, lubricate door hinges etc

12 months / 12,000 miles
as 6000, plus inspection of front brakes, check / adjust clutch, check battery

24 months / 24,000 miles
as above, plus renew coolant and brake fluid, inspect rear brakes, change air and fuel filters

Cambelt will be at some later time, depending on model.

An oil change doesn't really constitute a service, as the technician performing the service should really check around the car and if you take it in just for an oil change that is what you will get! If you were looking to get a 'service' on your Astra, then I would take it to one of the high street chains, and get one of their major services that they usualy advertise as 120 point or something (but about 10 of which usually involve finding the car, opening the door, putting a seat cover on, adjusting the mirror, retuning the radio etc etc..!)


Is it illogical? It must be Citroen....
Servicing schedule - HF
Thank you, firstly to The Author, who gave me carte blanche.

But secondly, of course, to all those who have answered my questions. I really am grateful, although I am going to have to be a little bit more aware when it comes to servicing.

Without this forum I just do not know - however, I had the oil and filter done maybe 6 months ago.

My lights seem to work. Underneath of car - what am I looking for?

After that I can see that it requires someone who 'knows'.

What High Street chain will do me a proper service? Kwik Fit?

Thank you very much to all of you. Everything is being taken down into the HF brain (yeah there is one) to be used when necessary. And thanks again to Cluchlochladden(sorry if name slightly wrong) for allowing me to steal his thread.
HF it a rip off.. - borasport20
does anyone know a reason why every time my
car does a long (600 mile plus) journey, the clutch hits
against the floor noisily, for a couple of days after the
journey, before returning to normal, and the other pedals feel looser?
HWMO told me it was because I was suddenly pressing the
pedals wrong, but it's not the case. It's just every time
it goes up north the car behaves erratically for a few

HF - It's to do with taking the car out of its natural environment. Every time I used to have to drive from 'oop north' to anywhere within 100 miles of the south coast, when i got home, the car always sounded as if someone had thrown a shovel full of nuts and bolts into a washing machine and set it to 'fast spin'. That said, if he's done a couple of trips back to the County Palatine and not suffered any major problems, then he's probably doing more good than harm. (got to be worth a pint that, Rob)

Bora - what Bora ? it a rip off.. - HF
>>got to be worth a pint that, Rob

More than that, Bora, to convince me he's not killing the car! ;)

But it is reassuring to know it's not just me. Thanks for that! it a rip off.. - DieselBoy
HF - get him to do the long journeys in the Golf. Ignore him saying it won't make it - it got down to Kent didn't it?! it a rip off.. - Garethj
A friend of mine with an Audi TT was horrified to find out he'd been stung for £230 to change front brake pads and a floor mat. Part of the bill was £3.17 + VAT on Plaslube, which I assume is like Copperslip. Now I bought a big pot of copperslip for about £9 ten years ago and I've still got 97% of the pot left, so are the dealers putting 3 lbs of the stuff in, with it oozing out of the callipers every time you brake? His verdict was that it was a good price for a Ferrari service, but pricey for what is basically a fancy Golf!

After this shock he went to a Maserati dealer, because the TT replacement could be a 3200GT. A 60,000 mile service on a 3200, assuming NOTHING else requires attention (which mihgt be unlikely) costs over £2000 - ouch!

When he walked through the service bay there was a 3200 in for what the salesman described as a "big service"

So, there's your nice 3 year old Maser, up on the lift, front suspension and steering out, engine out, turbos off, cylinder heads off, crank on the workshop floor in a pool of it's own oil, and some poor owner is being charged over 100 quid an hour for the privelidge. Now that's expensive!

Gareth it a rip off.. - HF
My way of thinking precisely, DB. The Golf is lovely, anyway, unless one needs to use first gear.

Having seen my beloved car suddenly go up to 140,000 instead of 135,000 miles on the clock, I will do my ultimate persuasion. Don't think it's gonna work though. :( it a rip off.. - Rob the Bus {P}
HF - get him to do the long journeys in the
Golf. Ignore him saying it won't make it - it
got down to Kent didn't it?!

Oi!! Whose side are you on?! ;-)

I'd have thought that you of all people would be painfully aware of how nasty a 650 mile round trip in 36 hours would be in my Golf!


Rob it a rip off.. - DieselBoy
It's a good, reliable work horse, after all that work that was done to it. Go on, admit it!

Okay - it smells like it's been sat on a farm for six months and could do with more a gap between reverse and first, but hey, £100? That's only the price of 45 pints!

Value my car