According to the Most Serviced Vehicles of 2017 report, March is the most popular month for vehicle servicing and repairs. Last year, Autodata saw a 20% rise in technical information usage across technical information modules, such as technical specifications, cam shaft drive systems, repair times, engine oil, service schedules and tyre pressures.
Spring is a significant season for workshops – due to a combination of new vehicle registration plates, the winter months and potholes, technicians should expect to see a boost in the number of vehicles they are working on.
After months of being battered by the cold and surviving the winter, many vehicles may still have significant signs of wear and tear. After all, winter is the most brutal season for many vehicle systems, from batteries and air filters to lubricants.
Coming out the other side of winter, roads also suffer from extensive damage; potholes are caused by the expansion of water that freezes in cracks on the surface of roads. As the cracks become larger and vehicles drive over them, they become deeper and begin to cause problems. Potholes can cause damage to tyres, crack alloys, break springs, bend suspension components, and move wheel alignments; so these are all key areas to check when a vehicle comes into workshops for spring servicing.
Most new vehicle plates are registered in March (ACEA, New passenger car registrations, 2016, 2017, 2018). A vehicle’s first MOT and MOTs thereafter are generally due in spring, if the MOT is carried out on time each year. Workshops can take advantage of this financial opportunity by contacting previous customers to provide them with a quote and a time for the service they require, making their lives easier.
Key spring servicing operations
Although air conditioning systems are useful in all weather conditions, drivers tend only to associate air conditioning with warm weather and therefore don’t use or check their vehicle’s AC system until they need it, only to find that it’s not working properly because of irregular maintenance. Spring is the time to prepare your customers for warmer weather conditions by offering to service and recharge/re-gas their air conditioning systems to avoid malfunction when it’s needed the most.
Excessive use during winter months on frozen glass and natural wear can cause windscreen wipers to tear or degrade. To ensure good visibility for drivers, windscreen wiper blades should be replaced at least once a year or when the blades are no longer making contact with the surface of the windscreen.
Wheels & tyres
Potholes can cause damage to tyres and wheel suspensions can also become misaligned. Check that your customers’ tyres are safe and ensure that their geometry is correct.
Suspension – cracked alloys, shock absorbers and springs
Potholes can affect a vehicle’s suspension, impacting the vehicle’s stability and making the vehicle difficult to control. This spring, remember to look out for cracked alloys, worn shock absorbers and broken springs.
Autodata’s OE manufacturer-verified automotive technical information solution for professionals provides workshops with the technical data required to service, maintain and repair 99% of vehicles on the road. Visit https://www.autodata-group.com/uk/cars/ for more information.