Car Servicing

Compare Car Servicing in New Zealand at Canstar Blue. Oil Changers, AA Auto Service & Repair, Midas, Pit Stop and VTNS were compared on Overall Satisfaction, Cost of Parts, Customer Service, Effectiveness of Repairs, Time Taken and Value of Money.

See our Ratings Methodology.

Most Satisfied Customers | Oil Changers

Oil Changers rated number one for customer satisfaction

Oil Changers Still No.1 For Car Servicing

Here in New Zealand, we have one of the highest car ownership rates in the world, with just over 800 cars per 1000 people. When you take into consideration that 20% of the population is not old enough to drive, that works out to roughly one car per adult! Phew! No wonder our urban roads are straining under all those wheels!

But whether you’re crawling through rush-hour traffic, or cruising an open highway, you need to be sure of one thing: that your car is mechanically sound. And to ensure your car is running safely and smoothly, it’s a good idea to get it serviced regularly.

Not only will regular services protect you, your family and other road users from a catastrophic mechanical failure, it should also save you money in the long term. Indeed, in our latest research, 72% of people agree that regular servicing saves money on potential expensive repairs further down the line. As servicing also helps to maximise a vehicle’s lifespan, it can potentially increase your car’s resale value when it comes time to sell, too.

But while all of us can check the basics – oil and water, tyre tread and pressure – some things are best left to the experts, especially when you consider the technical complexities of modern cars.

But which experts and which servicing centres can you trust? This is where Canstar Blue can help. As part of our mission to inform consumers of the best NZ has to offer, each year we thoroughly research, compare and rate Car Servicing chains in New Zealand to discover which deliver on customer satisfaction.

This year, we canvassed the opinions of 525 New Zealanders who’d serviced their cars at a servicing chain in the past 24 months, across a range of categories, to measure and track their satisfaction.

To decide which car servicing chain offers the best level of customer satisfaction, each was rated across the following categories:

  • Cost of Parts
  • Customer Service
  • Effectiveness of Repairs
  • Time Taken
  • Value of Money

Coming out on top is Oil Changers, the only car servicing company in this year’s ratings to earn a 5 Star rating for Overall Satisfaction. Founded in Christchurch in 2001, the Kiwi company scored impressive marks across all categories, with further 5 Star ratings for all-important Customer Service and Value for Money.

The award marks back-to-back wins for Oil Changers, which over the past decade has dominated the Most Satisfied Customers | Car Servicing award. Oil Changers’ seven wins made it one the most celebrated brands in Canstar Blue’s recent 10-year anniversary celebrations.

The only other car servicing company to earn multiple 5 Star ratings in this year’s award, is Pit Stop, which earned a 4 Star Overall Satisfaction rating, and 5 Star for Customer Service and Cost of Parts.


What Drives Kiwi Car Drivers!

In this year’s research we asked all participants if they hunted down the cheapest car servicing they could find, and only a quarter said yes. It’s a statistic reflected in what we discovered are the main drivers of consumers’ satisfaction levels with their car serving.

Overall, Customer Service was the biggest factor. This shows that when dealing with a car servicing firm, clear communications, sticking to appointment times and transparent costs can make a big difference – especially for those of us who don’t know our dipsticks from our drive belts!

The main drivers of satisfaction:

Drivers of satisfaction %
Customer Service 38%
Value for Money 30%
Effectiveness of Repairs 11%
Time Taken 11%
Cost of Parts 10%

Servicing Histories

As we mention above, nearly three-quarters of Kiwis have their cars regularly serviced. In fact, only 16% of those in our survey say they put off car servicing for as long as possible, and just 2% admit to only having their car serviced once something has gone wrong. While the cost of a service plays a big part in people skipping a regular service (65%) many more of us are regularly checking the little things at home:

I regularly check my car’s: %
Oil 79%
Tyre pressure 76%
Water 74%
Tyre tread 61%
Wipers 56%

But, of course, there’s a big difference between checking oil and water levels, and being able to understand all the tech that helps drive modern cars. And that’s why you need a car servicing centre that you can rely on. One that delivers 5 Star service and value for money, and one that delivers all round satisfaction … a car servicing centre like the winner of our 2020 award for Most Satisfied Customers | Car Servicing: Oil Changers.


Key statistics

Regular car services save money in the long run: 72%

I try to find the cheapest vehicle service: 24%

I service my car less regularly than I used to: 16%

Branded car servicing centres are more trustworthy than independent garages: 22%

I’ve doubted some of the work I’ve been told my car has required: 23%

I always get a second quote for major work on my car: 19%

I tend to put off getting my car serviced for as long as possible: 16%


Why Skip on Car Servicing %
Save money 65%
Takes too long 18%
Inconvenience of not having car 14%
Too much of a hassle 3%
I wait until a problem occurs 2%

In the long term, you can save money by having your car regularly serviced. Regular servicing keeps your car running efficiently and potentially reduces the chance of an expensive breakdown.

You’ll need to assess what’s best for your car, weighing up the requirements of its make, model and year, along with how often you use it (kilometres travelled) and for what type of driving (such as city or country driving) in consultation with your service provider. But a good rule of thumb is servicing once a year or every 10,000km.

The manufacturer’s guide should be a point of reference. Drivers should also consider what they can do between servicing, in terms of basic maintenance, such as checking tyre pressure and engine oil levels, ensuring lights are operational, etc.

Of course, if you notice any issues in between services (such as warning lights coming on, or irregular noises) it’s important to seek out your service provider at the earliest available opportunity.

Choosing a service centre

Some factors to consider include:

  • Qualifications/experience – what sort of qualifications and experience do the mechanics hold? Do they have particular areas of expertise?
  • Word of mouth/reviews – does the service centre come via the recommendation of a friend or colleague. How did they score in Canstar’s ratings?
  • Scope of services – what different types of services are provided, and is servicing provided for your make and model of car? Do you require specialised servicing?
  • Appointment – is an appointment required, and can you book online? What are the waiting times generally like?
  • Pricing – how does the pricing compare to other service centres in the area?


Canstar Blue surveyed 2,500 New Zealand consumers across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers who have had their car serviced in the last 2 years by a car servicing chain – in this case, 556 people.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.








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