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Explained: full-service history

Explained: full-service history

Buying a used car can be a bit of a minefield for the uninitiated. It’s a process littered with specific lingo and terminology, all of which can be a bit tricky to decipher. But one of the key things to check is for a full-service history.

But what does that actually mean? Let’s take a look.

What is a full-service history?

A full-service history - usually abbreviated to FSH in an advert - means that a vehicle has been serviced and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s guidelines and scheduling. It should also mean that all the relevant documents are kept with the car too, alongside the right stamps within the service book.

If a vehicle has been taken to a main dealer for all of its servicing and repairs, that means it has a main dealer full-service history. Cars with this are likely to hold on to a little more value as they age, as it means that no expense has been spared when it comes to maintenance.

However, if the car has been taken to a non-approved dealer or independent garage, but kept the servicing in line with the manufacturer’s guidelines then it still has a full-service history.

How does a car miss out on a full-service history?

This is quite simple really. If a car misses a scheduled service or hasn’t been serviced for some time, then it has an incomplete service history. This doesn’t mean that it won’t be reliable or good to live with, it just hasn’t been serviced in line with what the manufacturer recommends. These cars also command slightly less money at the point of sale.

How can I keep a full-service history?

If you’re wanting to maintain a full-service history on a car, then all you need to do is check the recommended servicing schedule provided by the manufacturer, follow the dates or service intervals it states and ensure that you get the garage stamps each time it’s serviced to make sure that you have proof of the work being done.

If you’ve bought a used car with full-service history, then you’ll have to check the servicing schedule and follow it to keep that all-important record.

How can I check that a used car has a full-service history?

Whenever you’re buying a used car, it’ll likely state whether or not it has a full-service history in the advert. However, don’t take this for granted - always ask to see the relevant paperwork and stamps. Always check for receipts for work, too, and for newer models, you can even check online to see a digital service record.

We have 13 service centres around the UK, click here to find one near to you.

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