If your BMW is due for maintenance services, you may have reservations about taking it to an independent repair shop instead of an official BMW or import car dealership. However,the benefits of choosing an independent BMW repair shop versus the dealership should resolve any concerns you may have about this option.
It is true that foreign cars require varied maintenance and different care than those manufactured in the U.S. This is why many owners of import vehicles think that the only place to receive proper service from correctly trained professionals is at the specific import car’s dealership. To all BMW owners facing the question,“Do I have to take my BMW to the dealership to be serviced?” allow us to answer your question and debunk some myths to make your life much easier.
The Customer Service Factor
Unlike branded dealerships, independent auto repair shops are specifically dedicated to providing repairs and maintenance, which leads to greater individual attention and better customer service than a big dealership could offer. Independent shops are focused on caring for each customer’s specific needs.
It’s very common for a dealership, on the other hand, to have a waiting list of cars in need of repair. So, unlike an independent repair shop, your car is more likely to be thrown into an assembly line of other cars and rushed through the service process. They may not be able to take the proper amount of time to assess your vehicle and actually diagnose the issue well enough to determine and take the steps to fix your vehicle’s problem for the long-term.
Specialized Service Team
When you are deciding on a mechanic to work on your import vehicle, be sure to choose one with an ASE, or Automotive Service Excellence, Certification. This is an indication that the mechanic is deemed highly qualified in the automotive repair industry. ASE is a certification organization for the auto repair industry, which distributes in-depth tests that each require two years of hands-on work in order to pass.
There are also advantages of establishing a business relationship with a local BMW repair shop. Once you find a repair shop you like with mechanics you can trust, continue to use their services if you are able to. This way, mechanics will develop a familiarity with the history of your car, enabling them to repair your vehicle faster. This can also save you money on your repair bill. You’ll enjoy the peace of mind that comes along with leaving your vehicle in the hands of mechanics you’ve spent time getting to know and trust.
New Car Warranty Protection
Another question BMW owners often ask before choosing to use an independent repair shop is: “Will my BMW warranty be invalid if I don’t go directly to a BMW dealership?” The simple answer to this question - no. An independent shop has just as much of an ability to keep a car’s warranty intact and up-to-date as a dealership does. Choosing an independent repair shop for any maintenance does not void a vehicle’s warranty.
The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act addresses this issue, ensuring that independent repair shops can provide services to vehicles in accordance to the manufacturers’ maintenance schedules without voiding the warranty.
Savings On Repairs & Service
Independent Repair Shops typically charge less than a dealership would for the same services. Because they have a larger overhead to pay for, they have more of an incentive to charge as much as possible for their work.
In comparison, an independent repair shop doesn’t have the same overhead and costs to worry about, so they have the freedom to be more competitive with their prices.
If you’d like to learn more about our services, contact us to speak to one of our dedicated customer service experts.