When it comes to servicing your RV, where do you take it? An RV dealership, an Independent RV Service Garage or do you do it yourself?
Of course, Bish’s RV will always suggest taking your RV into a dealership. Now we might be bias, but we have a good reason to be. Here are some benefits to taking your RV into a dealership and some questions you should ask yourself before taking it into an Independent RV Service Garage. In the end, you could save yourself thousands of dollars in repair by taking your RV or trailer into an RV dealership and here’s why.
- Dealership RV Technicians are manufacturer-trained with ongoing training programs to keep them up-to-date on the latest RV enhancements and repair techniques. These manufacturer training programs are only available to the dealership who sells their products, keeping the training exclusive to the dealers.
- When it comes to warranties, the advantages are definitely with the dealership. If your RV is still under warranty, depending on what the warranty covers, your dealership will perform the repairs for free. Plus, the dealership has a warranty department that will submit all of the warranty forms for you and help you with any needs you might have with a warranty issue.
- RV Networks: Most big dealerships buy into an RV Network where their customers can get service and parts from other dealerships across the country for a discounted price. So if you are on the road and you break down, the closes Network Dealership to you will come and help you get back on the road. This service is usually an extra fee you pay when you purchase your RV, but definitely worth the peace of mind.
- When it comes to customer service, the Service Department has to please not only the General Managers and owners of the dealership, but their manufacturers too. Dealerships do not want complaints directed to their manufacturers. So the Service Department is more willing to do more for the customer and to make sure they are doing the highest quality of repair on your RV.
- In a Dealership’s Service Department, the facility, tools and equipment are usually up-to-date. This allows the RV Technicians to perform the tasks needed to repair your RV accurately and efficiently. Facility size matters and at a dealership they usually have a bigger Service Department with more service bays. This might mean a shorter turn around time for you (not always, but usually true). The size of the facility can also determine the equipment that is used to repair your RV. The bigger the department, the newer and more up-to-date the equipment and tools are.
- Labor fees are always an issue when it comes to getting anything serviced. Most RV Dealerships can be very competitive when it comes to service labor fees. Just because it is a dealerships doesn’t mean the labor will cost anymore than the independent garage down the street. Do your research on the specific repair you need done before making a decision. This is where you could save thousands in parts and labor because of certain factors that were mentioned above.
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Most Independent RV Garages have trained technicians but they don’t keep their training current and up-to-date. Advancements in technology are rapidly changing each year, forcing RV Technicians to do training on a monthly to yearly basis. When you take your RV into a non-dealership service department, make sure their technicians have been trained within the last 6 months. Lack of training could cost you more when it comes to hourly labor fees.
Asking this question sounds stupid, but it’s not. If the garage uses manufacturer parts, that means they have to purchase them from a dealership that has a marked-up value attached to it. Most garages have generic parts, but those parts could compromise your warranty (if you have one) or could cost you more down the road because it wasn’t the exact part that was needed. Generic parts can reduce the reliability of the repair on your RV.
This might sound like another stupid question, but the size of the service facilities determines a lot of factors into the type of customer service you will experience. And size matters. The less amount of service bays a service department has, usually means a longer waiting time. Also the smaller the service department usually means more out-dated equipment, which could end up making the hours of labor more because they don’t have the necessary tools to get the job done on your RV.
RV Dealerships have certain memberships and subscriptions they use to keep up-to-date on the latest recalls, product updates and technological advances. When going into an Independent RV Service Garage, make sure they are up-to-date with all of the latest news and technology for your trailer’s manufacturer. Sometimes to cut costs, these types of Service Garages won’t subscribe to these types of services and you need to know that your RV will be repaired with the most recent information available.
Since an Independent Garage is not a dealership, they don’t sell the product you’ve purchased from a dealership. Sometimes the warranty you buy clearly states where you can and can’t get your RV serviced at. Make sure before taking in your RV that the Garage does warranty work through the company you have your warranty through. With warranties, making sure your RV is serviced at the right type of business can save you thousands of dollars in labor and parts. Also, make sure who is submitting the warranty work. If you have to do it, then this might cause you headaches and more pain than its worth.
If you have any questions about getting your RV Serviced, please call one of our Service Departments.