Mistake #1

Danni the Vanni is healthy! She passed her service from the very competent Lee at I.D.C Wigan.

HOWEVER. First off I tried to arrange it through a company called ServicingStop who at first quoted me £188 for a full service and oil change. All seemed about right and most importantly they would send someone out to do it on the driveway (the van is insured as SORN so can’t be taken anywhere until taxed and insured). They then rang me back and said that they had forgotten to include the price of the oil and that because it takes 11ltrs of oil it would cost an additional £160!!

I questioned it, but basically only because I didn’t have that money lying around. The mechanic rang me direct (the aforementioned and highly recommended I.D.C) and said that price was insane and that servicing stop take a 25% cut, so he would do it direct for £200 including the oil change.

So my first mistake was not shopping around enough. SHOP AROUND PEOPLE. While people are 99% good, companies are 99% mean and greedy and will take big cuts. The person on the phone freely admitted they had just googled the price of oil and that they knew nothing about cars or vans. Go local and independent where possible, pick someone knowledgeable and take the time to get to know the people servicing your vehicle.

Lee gave me some excellent advice when we were talking about the price of windows for the van. I was going to be paying about £100 per window without installation and this is  a huge chunk of my budget, but Lee suggested a sunroof! You can get them at scrap yards for buttons, they don’t have to be tinted to keep away the pervs, and you are less likely to get someone smashing them and robbing all of your socks.

Nice fella, job well done, good advice for the future and a good contact for further information!

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