A third of motorists say they are likely or very likely to either delay or skip having their vehicle serviced in the next 12 months due to the cost of living crisis.

That’s according to our new study1 investigating how drivers are looking to save money on their motoring bills as the cost of living crisis continues to trouble the UK.


Blue and white BookMyGarage branded bar chart about likelihood of skipping a car service


The results of our survey also show that two thirds of motorists are concerned that their vehicle may require a repair at some point in the near future which they can’t afford to fix, due to growing financial pressures as the UK enters into a recession.


Blue and white BookMyGarage branded bar chart about inability to fix expensive car repairs


1-in-10 motorists said they have even resorted to attempting repairs themselves on their own cars in an effort to save money.

With the UK’s CPIH inflation rate reaching 9.6% in October 20222, the cost of vehicle parts has also risen. Our survey found that a fifth of the respondents will be looking to use cheaper replacement parts (such as budget tyres or non-genuine parts) as a way of cutting down on repair bills.

The below bar chart gives a full breakdown of some of the most common ways motorists are looking to save money on their vehicle’s upkeep costs.


Blue and white BookMyGarage branded infographic about saving money on car maintenance


Impact Of Avoiding Servicing Can Be Severe

Karen Rotberg, Co-founder of BookMyGarage.com, said: “Not having your car serviced may seem like an easy way to cut down on motoring bills, but the reality is that more problems are likely to occur in the long term and could cost drivers more money overall.

“When a vehicle has a service, it’s inspected for any existing issues that often go undetected by a regular motorist. These problems can deteriorate over time and in some cases result in a costlier repair bill.

“Vehicle servicing is a preventative measure and skimping on servicing could result in significant engine damage and a repair bill that exceeds the value of the vehicle. It could also prove to be dangerous, as safety-critical faults may go unnoticed and the risk of a breakdown is greater.”

With almost half (43%) of our surveyed motorists stating that they are shopping around to save money on their vehicle’s maintenance, we enable drivers to easily compare instant prices from their local garages. On average last month, motorists paid £35.52 for an MOT test booked through BookMyGarage.com – representing a saving of 35% over the government-set maximum price of £54.85.

“We are fully understanding that these are difficult times for drivers. Replacement parts are more expensive, and garage owners are seeing their overheads skyrocket too. While we emphasise the need for a vehicle service, we are also aware that some drivers may feel they have no choice but to skip having it done. If you are struggling to cover the cost of a service and need to delay it to help spread costs, we’d encourage you to instead use our 17-point Winter Health Check, free of charge.”

Our free 17-point Winter Health Check is designed to offer motorists peace of mind that their vehicle is safe to drive, especially in the more hazardous winter months, by checking safety critical components such as tyres, brakes, lights and the battery.


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Data sources

  1. Survey conducted by BookMyGarage.com in October 2022 to its customer database with 2,113 respondents.
  2. Sourced from Office of National Statistics: https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/inflationandpriceindices/timeseries/l55o/mm23