CHICAGO, June 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Cars.com, the premier online resource for buying and selling new and used cars and now, finding maintenance providers through its new Repair & Care product, has released a list of common myths about servicing a car. Car service falls into unknown territory for many car shoppers and owners, so Cars.com editors have compiled and debunked the most common myths around car service.
"Americans are holding onto their cars longer than ever with the average vehicle age at 11.4 years," said Joe Wiesenfelder, Cars.com's Executive Editor and resident maintenance expert. "There's a lot of misinformation out there for drivers looking to keep their car on the road as long as possible, so we've debunked some of the most common myths."
The top 3 car service myths according to Cars.com experts are:
- Independent repair shops are always less expensive than dealer service departments. Over half of consumers believe that dealerships are always the most expensive repair option regardless of repair type. Despite this cost perception, some respondents still consider dealerships to be better and more reliable overall than independent repair shops. While dealers sometimes charge more in labor than independent shops, this isn't always the case. Additionally, some dealers and independent shops use only manufacturer-brand parts, which tend to cost more, but can be more reliable. Of course, it helps when consumers come prepared to the discussion. With Cars.com's price estimator tool, shoppers can understand both the cost of any parts they may need and how much labor will cost them for common repairs in their local area. The long-term solution to lower repair bills is to foster a relationship with a mechanic you trust. If a car is still under warranty, service and repair at a dealership is a requirement of many warranty terms.
- Cars today are maintenance free. "While today's cars certainly require less maintenance than cars built 25 years ago, that doesn't mean they don't still need regular care, and the needs vary widely from one model to the next," said Wiesenfelder. "For example, some cars need an oil change every 3,000 miles while others may be able to wait until as high as 20,000 miles. Be sure to check your owner's manual to see exactly what service your vehicle requires and how often that service is required in order to avoid costly repairs in the long run."
- Mechanics always push more work on owners to drive up repair bills."There's no question that not all service providers are equal, but many are looking out for your best interest," said Wiesenfelder. "Cars.com has tools like reviews of dealership service departments that can help people find a trustworthy, certified mechanic close to home."To find a trusted, certified mechanic, read reviews and estimate the cost of your repair in your local area, visit Cars.com's Repair & Care resource at http://www.cars.com.
ABOUT CARS.COMCars.com is an award-winning online destination for those seeking car shopping and car servicing tools to help them research, price and find the right car, dealership and service provider. For shoppers, Cars.com offers thousands of new and used vehicle listings, consumer reviews, side-by-side comparison tools, photo galleries, videos, unbiased editorial content and more. For service seekers, Cars.com offers estimated pricing for repairs of their vehicle in their local area, search tools to find a certified mechanic, reviews of dealer service departments, unbiased expert advice and more. Cars.com puts millions of car buyers and service seekers in control of their shopping and researching process with the information they need to make stress-free decisions. Launched in June 1998, Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures LLC, which is owned by leading media companies, including A.H. Belo (NYSE: AHC), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI), Tribune Company (OTC: TRBAA) and Graham Holdings (NYSE: GHC).
 Polk, August 2013
 GfK Research Service and Repair Report, October 2013