Canadian drivers making fewer service visits

But they're paying more per visit according to a J.D. Power consumer survey

Published: September 2, 2014, 6:00 PM
Updated: November 26, 2014, 3:35 AM

Auto Service

Owners of 4- to 12-year-old vehicles in Canada visit a service facility (dealership or other) 2.6 times per year on average according to the J.D. Power 2014 Canadian Customer Commitment Index (CCI) Study.

That figure is down from 2.9 visits per year in 2010, but remains about the same as last year's findings.

"Better vehicle quality and longer recommended maintenance intervals mean owners are taking their vehicles in less often," says J.D. Ney, manager of the Canadian automotive practice at J.D. Power. "But (they're) paying more each time they go."

Owners who make just one service visit per year spend $248 per visit on average, the study shows. But the cost per visit decreases with more frequent servicing – $212 per visit for two visits; $208 for three visits, and $200 for four.

While the total annual cost goes up with more visits, satisfaction with the work also improves. At least in part, that's because customers tend to judge the charges on a per-visit rather than a per-year basis, Ney says.

Overall satisfaction scores averaged 813 among those who made one service visit per year; 827 among for those with two visits and 836 among those who made three visits.