Who is Responsible for Lease Car Repairs?
Car leasing periods are more long-term than car rental periods, which means the likelihood of developing repair or maintenance issues increases. Despite a driver’s utmost care, it’s not uncommon for lease cars to suffer mishaps or more serious issues during a lease period. If you’re leasing a car that is in need of a repair, it may leave you wondering who is responsible for repair of a lease car and who repairs a lease car?
Do I need to repair everything?
Generally speaking, the person leasing a car is responsible for any repairs and maintenance not covered by warranty, and needs to return the car in a reasonable state. It’s always best to repair the car before returning the car after a lease period – it may work out cheaper than paying the leasing company’s estimate of the damage costs.
What if it’s not my fault? If the damage was not your fault (e.g. another car collided with you) then the cost of repairs will typically fall with their insurer through a claims process.
What about manufacturer warranty? Check whether your lease car’s manufacturer warranty actually covers your current lease period or mileage. Warranty typically covers defects such as the gearbox, engine, glass, that occur during normal use but will not cover more common components that need replacing through everyday usage (see below).
How to repair a leased car
- Tyres: Check the tyre pressure of your lease car at least once a month. Also spot check for bumps, bulges and other damage. Replacement tyres from a variety of makes and models are available from reputable tyre centres and sufficient tyre tread is a legal requirement.
- Brakes & Clutches: Through wear and tear brake pads and clutches degrade over time. You can get them repaired and replaced at a trusted garage to keep your lease car in a legal, roadworthy shape.
- Exhausts: If your exhaust system is struggling or has deteriorated over time, this may not be covered by warranty, and therefore you pay for the remedial work yourself.
- Diagnostics: When warning lights appear on the dashboard, you need to get it checked out by a professional – especially if you’re unsure of the root cause. Who pays for the repair will depend entirely on the issue diagnosed.
- MOTs & General servicing: Many leasing agreements will call for the car leaser to book the vehicle in for regular servicing to keep it in the best possible condition and fulfil warranty requirements. Of course, you will also be legally expected to book the car in for its annual MOT if the vehicle is older than three years.
- Cosmetic Damage: Windscreen chips will need attention by auto glazers to ensure they are fixed and legally compliant. Chips, scratches and other scuffs can appear on a lease car, just like any other. Touch-up polishes and paints can be bought from manufacturers/auto repair shops which exactly match the paintwork on your car however this is not an easy undertaking to get right. Fair wear and tear is covered by the BVRLA (British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association), especially if you have driven carefully but do check with your leasing company for the exact guidelines you’re bound by.
Where do you go for lease car repairs?
Firstly, it’s wise to check if your car leasing company are happy for you to use an independent garage or auto-centre or specifies taking the vehicle to a dealership.
If the leasing company doesn’t specify, opting for an independent garage or autocentre will generally mean you receive a more local and affordable service. Reputable firms will repair to manufacturer standard with quality parts, so to restore a safe, optimal driving experience.
Mr Tyre are the leading autocentre across Central England, solving a wide range of car issues at competitive prices. From tyre replacement to car servicing to clutch repair – we have the expertise to handle a broad spectrum of issues for many makes and models of vehicle. To find out more about how we can assist you with your car, leased or owned, simply contact your local branch today.