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What is the Difference Between an Interim Service and a Full Service?

Regular servicing of your vehicle will ensure it runs perfectly for as long as possible. It’s also good for your wallet in the long term. However, servicing isn’t mandatory like an MOT, so deciding whether to have a full or interim service can be difficult for some motorists.

An interim service checks the levels of fluids, including brake fluid, screen wash and antifreeze coolant. In addition to this, an interim service will also include checks on the condition of the engine, such as the plugs and filter, as well as testing the batteries, lights and tyres.

Here is a detailed breakdown of what is checked in an interim service:

  • Bodywork and mirrors
  • Timing belt interval
  • ABS
  • Warning lights
  • All seatbelts
  • Interior and exterior lights
  • Front and rear windscreen wipers, washers and rear view mirror
  • Fuel cap
  • Air conditioning (if applicable)
  • Power steering
  • Auxiliary and fan belts
  • Air filter
  • Battery
  • Clutch
  • Handbrake operation
  • Gearbox oil and axel oil topped up
  • All fluid levels topped up
  • Inspection for corrosion
  • Engine oil replaced
  • Oil filter replaced
  • Steering and suspension
  • Exhaust system
  • Fuel lines, brake pipes, hoses and handbrake
  • Checks for signs of leakage from cylinders/callipers
  • Tyres
  • Brake pads
  • Drums and discs
  • Exhaust emissions

 

For comparison, a full service will include all of the above, plus the following:

  • Door hinges, catches and locks
  • Coolant system checked for leaks
  • Engine cooling fan
  • Operation of throttle checked
  • Air filter replaced
  • Condition of distributor cap
  • Checks for engine and gearbox mounts for wear
  • Starter motor cranking and security tests
  • Visual inspections of radiator and coolant pipes
  • All wheel bearings checked for noise
  • Check condition of all wheels
  • Check front and rear brakes

Following these checks, your service book will be stamped in recognition of the servicing which can be kept and shown as part of your vehicle’s history.

So now you know the exact difference between the two different servicings, but as mentioned previously, it is worth referring to the vehicle’s handbook for more accurate information.

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