A lease car maintenance contract is a good option for those seeking hassle-free motoring, but are they right for everyone? We reveal all...
You've found the car you want, with the lease terms you need. Now you need to consider whether you want to take out a maintenance contract as well. For a fixed monthly fee, you can opt for a plan that will take care of the costs associated with servicing, replacement tyres and a range of other repair costs.
The idea behind a maintenance package is to give you peace of mind against costs you may not have budgeted for. Here we go through some frequently asked questions about car maintenance packages.
What is a lease car maintenance contract?
If the option of maintenance is included within a car leasing contract, it will generally cover you for the annual car service and any wear-and-tear items that need to be replaced. However, damage such as a nail in a tyre, is unlikely to be included, and some maintenance contracts can exclude tyres and exhausts. That's why it's vital that you check the full content of the package with the supplying dealer before signing up.
Is a lease car maintenance contract worth it? You need to assess the overall cost across the entire contract term. So, work out your expected mileage and the car's individual service schedule, speak with your dealer for the servicing costs you can expect, then do the sums to work out if it is beneficial to you. Remember to include regular servicing work and the cost of replacing the odd tyre, and perhaps replacement brakes.
Remember that a lease car maintenance package spreads the cost out over the contract term, so you're less likely to incur big bills in one go.
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Will I benefit from a maintenance contract?
The chances are that low-mileage drivers will be better off paying their service and maintenance bills when they occur. But drivers who cover higher mileages, say 20,000 miles or more a year, are more likely to benefit from a maintenance package.
Businesses who operate fleets often find lease car maintenance packages useful, as the regular costs are easier to account for.
What maintenance contract options are there?
You could have a tyre-only contract, or a service, maintenance and repair contract that includes UK breakdown cover and replacement vehicles while your car is repaired.
It's worth noting that windscreen repair or replacement isn't usually offered, but windscreen cover is usually part of a fully-comprehensive insurance package.
I have a maintenance contract, how do I book an appointment?
You should receive a maintenance contact number from the finance company. Use that to book the vehicle into a local approved garage.
A franchised dealer or an authorised VAT-registered agent should be able carry out the required work as stipulated by the contract, but check the fine print first.
Are MOT tests covered under lease car maintenance contracts?
Most lease contracts cover two or three years, so your leased vehicle may never need an MOT test. If your contract is longer and your car does need a MOT test, then call the contact number in the maintenance contract.