12 Feb Dealership or Independent: What is the difference and what works best for you?
When it comes to servicing your car, do you cruise down to the dealership or independent Kelowna shop? There can be benefits to both, and it mostly comes down to personal preference. Most people judge the quality of their service on the price, convenience, and customer service they receive. Presently, independent shops are often able to outshine the dealerships in all these important aspects.
I want quality work at a fair price.
Dealerships may have many staff members to assist you and plenty of bays to usher your car into, but the cost to run a large facility like that means those costs are passed down to you. Often, dealerships have higher hourly rates than independent shops, and their technicians are paid a flat-rate. This means that they will get paid the same amount of money to do a two-hour job in one hour. Using flat-rate means that technicians are incentivized to get through as many jobs as quickly as possible to maximize their earnings. This can lead to sloppy mechanical work, which may end up costing you time and money later on.
I want a team that knows me and my car personally.
Spending any amount of time at an independent shop will show you that the team is often a lot smaller than a dealership’s, but that means a more personal touch. These local shops pride themselves on their commitment to their customers, customers who often times feel a lot like friends and family. Instead of being treated as a number or just another person in line, you are greeted by a familiar face and friendly conversation. This intimate relationship extends to your car, which is often worked on by the same technician every time. They learn the history of your car and everything about it that makes it unique.
I want service at my trusted independent shop, but my car is under manufacturer’s warranty.
It is a common misconception that you must service your car at the dealership under warranty. The truth is that you can take your car anywhere your heart desires. The manufacturer can’t do anything about it, especially void your warranty. A good independent shop will have all the tools and diagnostic equipment necessary to service your car just as well, if not better, than a dealership. Independent shops may not have the latest software updates on brand new vehicles, and service that falls under warranty will need to be completed at the dealership, but your independent shop can help guide you through that process.
I want a choice in what parts and fluids go into my car.
Dealerships are required to use manufacturer parts and factory-made equipment, whereas independent shops have more flexibility. Because they do not answer to a manufacturer, there is more research that goes into using alternative, aftermarket parts that could be less expensive than OEM, and in some cases, superior to factory parts. Independent shops are also able to use higher quality fluids and filters than dealerships, which can prolong the life of your car and minimize maintenance in the future.
I want a specially trained technician to work on my car.
The technicians working at dealerships are all trained in the specific brand they are working with, and the familiarity of working with one car line does have its benefits. Although, technicians at independent shops often start out at dealerships, so they have the same background training. Since independent shops rely on reputation to keep business afloat, high-quality technicians are a must. They are certified to work on a variety of brands and are usually master technicians with a lot of experience and knowledge under their belts.
I want a team that is passionate.
At Motor Werke, our team is dedicated to customer service, quality work, and our commitment to doing things right… the first time. Our technicians are highly trained and certified in European brands and we have specialized technology and state-of-the-art equipment, such as our Hunter in-ground alignment machine and Hunter Elite tire-mounting and balancing equipment, that specializes in high end and low-profile wheels. The Hunter tire-mounting machine does not ever touch the face of the rims, meaning no accidental scratches, and the Hunter balancing machine has road force capabilities, which means it is able to imitate road load.
Next time you’re considering a dealership or independent shop, at Motor Werke, you’ll find quality customer service experience with a tight-knit and highly trained team. We offer our own exclusive three-year, unlimited kilometre warranty, shuttle service, courtesy cars, and staff who genuinely care about the well being of your car. Our technicians are on an hourly rate, which means there is never a reason to rush through any repair or maintenance. It is our goal to make servicing your car as painless as possible. If you are under a manufacturer’s warranty, we will even take care of making appointments at the dealership for you while your car is in our care!
At Motor Werke, we believe in getting the job done right. Every car, every time.