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The Case for Recommending Additional Preventive Maintenance: Guiding Service Advisors to Enhance Vehicle Longevity

As the automotive industry continues to evolve, so too does the role of the service advisor. Traditionally tasked with facilitating repairs and maintenance outlined in the owner’s manual, service advisors now face a growing responsibility: guiding customers towards additional preventive maintenance measures that can extend the longevity of their vehicles. With the average age of cars on the road reaching 12 and a half years and many reaching near 100,000 miles, service advisers play a critical role in helping customers navigate the complexities of vehicle maintenance to ensure their vehicles remain reliable and roadworthy for years to come. In this article, we’ll explore how and why service advisors should recommend additional preventive maintenance outside of the owner’s manual to assist customers interested in maximizing the longevity of their vehicles.

### Understanding the Changing Landscape:

The automotive landscape is shifting, with advancements in technology and engineering resulting in vehicles that are more durable and reliable than ever before. As a result, the average age of cars on the road has steadily increased, reaching record levels in recent years. With many vehicles surpassing the 100,000-mile mark and still going strong, the need for proactive maintenance measures to preserve their longevity has never been more apparent.

### Beyond the Owner’s Manual:

While the owner’s manual provides valuable guidance for routine maintenance, it may not encompass all the preventive measures necessary to ensure the long-term health of a vehicle, especially as it ages. Service advisors should recognize the limitations of the owner’s manual and proactively recommend additional preventive maintenance measures tailored to each customer’s unique driving habits, environmental conditions, and vehicle usage.

### Proactive vs. Reactive Maintenance:

The difference between proactive and reactive maintenance cannot be overstated. While reactive maintenance involves addressing issues as they arise, often at a higher cost and with more significant downtime, proactive maintenance focuses on preventing problems before they occur. By recommending additional preventive maintenance measures, service advisers can help customers avoid costly repairs and breakdowns, ultimately extending the lifespan of their vehicles.

### Tailoring Recommendations to Individual Needs:

Every vehicle and driver is unique, and as such, preventive maintenance recommendations should be tailored to each customer’s specific circumstances. Factors such as driving habits, climate, vehicle age, and mileage all play a role in determining the appropriate maintenance schedule and services required. Service advisers should take the time to understand their customers’ needs and recommend preventive maintenance measures accordingly.

### Building Trust and Loyalty:

By going above and beyond the basic recommendations outlined in the owner’s manual and providing personalized preventive maintenance recommendations, service advisers can build trust and loyalty with their customers. By demonstrating a genuine commitment to their customers’ long-term satisfaction and vehicle longevity, service advisers can foster strong relationships that extend beyond individual service visits.

### Educating Customers:

Many customers may not be aware of the benefits of additional preventive maintenance measures or may be hesitant to invest in services beyond what is explicitly recommended in the owner’s manual. Service advisers have a unique opportunity to educate their customers about the importance of proactive maintenance and the potential cost savings and benefits it can provide in the long run. By providing clear explanations and transparent pricing, service advisors can empower customers to make informed decisions about their vehicle maintenance.

### Embracing Technology:

In today’s digital age, technology plays an increasingly important role in vehicle maintenance. Service advisors should leverage digital tools and platforms to track customer service history, monitor vehicle health, and provide personalized recommendations for preventive maintenance. By harnessing the power of technology, service advisors can streamline the maintenance process and enhance the overall customer experience. One often underutilized aspect is declined operations. Often with preventative maintenance in particular, it will take multiple times mentioning it before they take the advice. Be sure your technology and personnel are recording and using declined services operation codes.

### Conclusion:

As the average age of cars on the road continues to rise, the role of the service advisor in recommending additional preventive maintenance measures has never been more crucial. By understanding the changing landscape of the automotive industry, tailoring recommendations to individual customer needs, and embracing proactive maintenance principles, service advisors can help customers maximize the longevity of their vehicles and ensure their continued satisfaction for years to come.

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