Case Study: 'Shop around, be nosy about what is being done and always ask for an itemised bill'
Garages attract their fair share of consumer complaints, but a common theme in many of them is a lack of transparency; not knowing exactly what work has been done to your car or, worse still, parts replaced without your consent.
"Too often in the past I have felt that I do not know what I am paying for, there are costs added on and work done without my approval," said Mick O'Leary from Co Dublin, who runs a five-year-old Jaguar XF.
"There have been examples of invoices I've received from garages that have been on the high side and for doing extra work without me being aware of it."
He wouldn't be loyal to any one garage, not least because he has owned several different makes of car, so when he heard about garage price comparison and booking website Autoservicing.com via a friend, he decided to give it a go and has been very happy with the results. "It has been a seamless experience to date. I feel I am getting the best value plus a very transparent service."
He doesn't necessarily opt for the cheapest service. "When I'm checking out prices online, if my preferred garages are in and around the most competitive - and it wouldn't necessarily have to be cheapest - I tend to return to them."
He advises others to "shop around, be nosy about what is being done and ask whether it is absolutely necessary and always ask for an itemised bill".