How Long Does It Take To Get A Car Service?

When you plan a fast trip to the garage, the last thing you want to hear is that your car will be stuck there for many hours longer than expected.

You could end up stuck, waiting in the garage indefinitely for a hero partner, dad, or flatmate to arrive and fetch you up.

Whatever your automobile is in for, it’s a good idea to know how long it’s going to take. That way, you can make other plans or have someone pick you up and drive you back to your car.

To avoid any awkward situations or sitting around the garage for hours on end, we’ve described how long each sort of car service takes.

What is a car service, and why does it take an hour or more?

We’ve written an entire piece about what a car service entails, but to summarize, it’s a thorough examination of the intricate workings of a vehicle.

While you can do some DIY car maintenance, even for your personal piece of mind, your car need regular servicing by a skilled mechanic.

Given the quantity of checks involved in car servicing, it normally takes longer than other routine examinations such as your MOT.

However, whether you go to an independent garage or a dealership, the time necessary for your service is primarily determined by the type of service you receive.

We’ve discussed the various types of services, so now we’ll give you an idea of how long they’re likely to take.

How long would my initial service take?

The first service for a new automobile is normally performed after 12 months, or approximately 12,000 miles, and is frequently a requirement of your car’s warranty. You shouldn’t need one any sooner than this, but you may check your recommended service schedule in the owner’s manual.

Because your car is relatively new, everything from the fuel efficiency to the spark plugs should be in good working order. Your technician won’t have to do much, so you’ll get your car back quickly.

You can check in with your garage ahead of time, but we’d budget 1-2 hours for your initial servicing.

How long does an interim service typically last?

An interim service is performed every 6 months and is normally advised if your car is driven often and for a long distance.

Interim Services, like as brake inspections and fluid top-ups, can help keep your car in good condition if you drive a lot.

It is not as complete as the full service. An interim service will take around 1.5 hours.

In our post “What does an interim service include,” you can find out exactly what the technician will look at.

How long does it take to complete a thorough service?

There’s more your garage will want to look at for a basic car of 3+ years. You’re more likely to need coolant, brake fluid, air filter, and oil filter changes as you get older.

For a breakdown, see our page on what a full service entails. A full car service usually takes roughly 3 hours.

We understand that it may appear to be a lot, but delaying maintenance such as an engine oil change can have a negative influence on your car at any stage of its life.

More on full servicing can be found in our topic “What Does a Full Service Include?”

How long does it take to complete a significant service?

A significant service is the top dog in the servicing world. Because your mechanic will check everything contained in a full service and more, they should only be done every 2 or 3 years.

The time it takes for a significant service depends on the parts that need to be replaced, but it will most likely take at least 3-4 hours.

Check out our page “What Does a Major Service Include?” for more information on significant services.

How long does it take to perform a combination MOT and service?
If you want to save time and possibly money on the cost of a car service, you can get your service and MOT done at the same time.

You won’t save much time on the actual service because you’ll be combining the time of the service and the MOT, but it does mean you’ll only need to make one appointment every year. Then you may utilize your service history to remember when your MOT is due!


Having your automobile maintained properly and on time is a vital component of keeping it operating smoothly for many years. If you have a contract hire agreement, you should read our post on leasing a car.

Check out our page on how often you should maintain your automobile, or look in your owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendations on service intervals.