How Long Does It Take to Service a Car in Australia

For many Australians, a car is more than just a mode of transport—it’s a crucial part of daily life. Whether you’re commuting to work in Sydney’s bustling city centre, exploring the vast outback, or running daily errands, your car needs to be in top condition. Regular servicing is key to ensuring your vehicle runs efficiently and safely. One common question among car owners is: How long does it take to service a car? Here, we explore this question in detail, considering various factors that influence service time.

What Does a Car Service Involve?

Before diving into how long a car service might take, it’s essential to understand what a typical service includes. Car servicing can vary widely depending on the type of service (e.g., basic or logbook), the vehicle’s age, model, and the service provider.

Basic Service Checklist:

  • Oil and Filter Change: Essential for maintaining engine health.
  • Fluid Levels Check: Includes brake, power steering, transmission, and coolant fluids.
  • Brakes Inspection: Ensures your brakes are functioning correctly.
  • Tyre Pressure and Tread Check: Critical for safety and fuel efficiency.
  • Battery Check: Prevents unexpected breakdowns.
  • Light and Windscreen Wiper Checks: Ensures visibility and safety.

Logbook Service:

  • Detailed Inspection: Follows the manufacturer’s guidelines.
  • Replacement of Parts: Such as spark plugs, air filter, and fuel filter based on manufacturer’s recommendations.
  • Performance Checks: Includes engine tuning and updates to electronic software.

Logbook services are scheduled every 10,000 kilometres (about 6213.71 mi) or 12 months (whichever comes first) and are designed to inspect your vehicle by the manufacturer’s guidelines. Because different manufacturers require different service items, the duration of a car service varies according to the vehicle and service.

How long does it take to service a car?

The duration of a car service can vary based on several factors:

Type of Service

  • Basic Service: Typically takes between 1 to 2 hours.
  • Logbook Service: More comprehensive and can take 3 to 5 hours, depending on the specifics of the service required at that time.

Vehicle Condition and Age

  • Older Vehicles: This may require more time if parts are worn out or if there are several issues to address.
  • Well-Maintained Vehicles: Generally quicker to service as fewer problems need attention.

Service Provider

  • Dealerships: This might take longer due to a detailed approach as per manufacturer guidelines.
  • Local Mechanics: This could be quicker, but this varies by the complexity of the service and the mechanic’s schedule.

More complicated maintenance or repairs may take longer. Still, we understand how essential it is for you to plan your day, so when you schedule, we’ll give you an estimate of how long your service will take and notify you if anything unexpectedly takes longer.

Ensuring Efficient Car Service Times

While it’s important to know how long a service might take, there are also steps you can take to ensure the process is as efficient as possible. Here are some tips to help streamline your car service experience:

Prepare Your Vehicle

  • Documentation Ready: Have all necessary documents, such as your service logbook and previous service reports, readily available. This helps the mechanic understand your car’s history.
  • Clean Your Car: A clean car allows mechanics to access necessary parts more easily and can prevent any delays caused by needing to clear out clutter.

Communicate Clearly

  • Discuss Specifics: If you’re aware of any issues with your vehicle, mention these upfront. Clear communication can save diagnostic time and focus the service on your car’s immediate needs.
  • Ask for an Estimate: Understanding the scope of the service and how long it will take can help you plan your day better. Most service providers are willing to give a time estimate after assessing your car.

Choosing the Right Service Provider

  • Reputation and Reviews: Choose a service provider with a good reputation and positive reviews. Experienced mechanics are more likely to diagnose and service your car efficiently.
  • Certification and Expertise: Ensure that the service centre is certified and that the mechanics have expertise, particularly with your car’s make and model.

What If It Takes Longer?

Sometimes, despite the best planning, a car service might take longer than expected. Here’s what you can do if this happens:

Stay Informed

  • Request Updates: Ask for regular updates, especially if the service exceeds the time initially quoted.
  • Understanding Delays: Sometimes, delays can occur due to the need for unexpected repairs or parts that are difficult to source quickly. Understanding the reason for delays can help mitigate frustration.

Use the Time Effectively

  • Run Errands: Use the waiting time to run errands or catch up on work. Many service centres are located near shopping areas or have amenities like Wi-Fi.
  • Relax: If you’re waiting at the service centre, take this time as a forced break from your busy schedule. Some centres offer lounges with magazines, coffee, or even television.


Servicing your car is a critical aspect of vehicle maintenance that should be noticed. While the time it takes to service a car in Australia can vary, understanding what influences the duration can help you plan better and ensure minimal disruption to your schedule. Regular servicing not only extends the lifespan of your vehicle but also ensures safety on the road, providing peace of mind whether you’re driving in urban settings or rugged terrain. Remember, a well-serviced car is a reliable partner on the road.

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