R & E L Birley, motor vehicle engineers,
1 Waltham lane, Long Clawson. (01664 822450)
Freedom to service new cars (Block Exemption regulation)
2003 saw the introduction of important new EU legislation, referred to as Block exemption, (BER 1400/2002) These regulations are intended to benefit the consumer by increasing competition and giving freedom of choice within the motor industry.
The main benefit to us as a service provider and of equal importance to our customers is, the section regarding servicing of new vehicles. Because of these regulations, Car manufactures can no longer insist as a condition of their warranty, that their own dealers service cars during the warranty period.
As an independent garage we have benefited, gaining routine service work on newer cars still within the manufactures warranty. Equally as important is, that our customers benefit from the convenience (and cost savings) of having their vehicle servicing carried out locally, there by avoiding the need to take it to the dealer, who may be some distance away.
Another benefit of the block exemption regulations was that the vehicle manufactures where given an obligation to release the technical and service information to the independent repair and service sector. The only down side is that they are allowed to charge for it and they certainly do! Our chosen method for obtaining most of our technical data and service information is by annual subscription to AUTODATA CD3. This is we feel is essential when working on modern vehicles. Autodata collect data details needed for routine servicing and repairs from all vehicles manufactures and supply it to us in a common format via computer CD. This information is updated regularly to make sure we keep pace with new models released. (http://www.autodata.ltd.uk/)
These two shots are from Autodata. First screen shows data category selection screen, second screen shows a typical example of information provided.