Do You Fancy Servicing Your Own Car?

Posted on Mon ,09 Apr 2018 9:56 pm
CG Team
Tagged by mahindra, no more tags
Do You Fancy Servicing Your Own Car?

Mahindra First Choice Services will help you fulfil your desire to work on your car in a controlled environment.


Being a car enthusiast is all about feeling a connection with your car. So working on it will only help to make the bond tighter. Theoretical knowledge is a good way to know all about your car, but a practical understanding of it all is like the cherry on top. But the practical training needs to be done under the watchful eyes of expert technicians in a controlled environment. Mahindra First Choice Services has come up with a program to help you do just that. Called ‘A Date with your Car’, it is an appointment based program in which the customer will get hands-on service experience. No labour charges will be billed to the customer.


Mahindra First Choice Service A Date with your Car - Dirty Engine Bay


Recently we got to experience the DIY service program where our team-mate Amith worked on his beloved black Hyundai Verna. Only the regular and basic jobs are being allowed to be done by the customer in this program. The jobs include checking/replacing the various engine fluids, electric system, braking system, tyres, etc.


Disclaimer: Mahindra First Choice Services invited CarzGarage to experience its ‘A Date with your Car’ DIY service program. They covered the service cost for Amith’s Hyundai Verna.


It all starts like a normal service appointment where the service advisor inspects the car and prepares a job sheet. Amith was then briefed about the various service jobs which he will be undertaking, how to handle equipment, and the various do’s and don’ts required for the safety of the people, car and equipment.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date with Your Car - Oil Drain


The first job was to check/replace the oil. Oil is what keeps the various parts in an engine moving smoothly by providing lubrication. Amith was told about the various kinds of oil (mineral/synthetic), the change interval (5,000-15,000kms depending on the type of oil and usage environment) and then taught to read the dipstick which tells the level and quality of oil in the system. Amith was told that dirty oil will lead to high friction between the moving parts and damage the engine components which can result in expensive repair bills.


Mahindra First Choice Service A Date With Your Car - Oil Drain Plug removal


The Verna needed an oil change and therefore a jack stand was used to raise the front of the car off the ground. The technicians demonstrated to Amith on how to remove the oil filter and then the oil drain nut from near the engine block and drain out the oil. Amith was not allowed to do this job as getting two people under the car in such a restricted space would have been cumbersome. Usually this activity is carried out by putting the car on a ramp or a lift so the customer will be able to carry out the job freely, but these were not free during our visit.


Mahindra First Choice Service A Date with your Car - Oil Change


Once the oil was drained out, the oil drain nut was put back into place. Amith was then instructed to pour fresh oil into the engine. After the required quantity was poured in, it was time to fit in the new oil filter.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With your Car - Air Filter Cleaning


The next job was to check the air-filter placed in a box near the front of the engine bay. It’s a part that needs to be cleaned every 5,000 kms and should be replaced every 20,000 kms. Amith was told by the technicians about how the air-filters prevent abrasive particulate matter from entering the engine cylinders thus preventing mechanical wear and oil contamination. Removing the air-filter from its housing is a very easy job and Amith did it very quickly. After inspection, the dust on the air-filter was cleaned and the filter was placed back in its housing.


Mahindra First Choice A Date with your Car - Tool Box


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Removing the spark plugs


After the oil change and air-filter cleaning it was time for Amith to check the spark plugs. Spark plug is the part which ignites the fuel-air mixture in the combustion chamber. Before venturing to do this activity the technicians explained the process to Amith in detail as it is a very delicate and multi-stage process. With hand-holding from the technicians Amith first began by removing the ignition coil and then got to the job of unscrewing the spark plug. He was constantly reminded by the technicians that he shouldn’t apply too much force to the ratchet socket tool used to unscrew the ignition coils or the spark plug, as it will damage the parts. After the spark plugs were removed the technicians informed Amith about the gap settings which needed to be checked. The carbon deposits were then cleaned using sandpaper. After this the delicate and slow process of putting it all back together began.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Spark plug gap


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Checking the electricals


Next the battery terminals were cleaned and the battery output was checked. The engine was cranked and left to idle. The service advisor then asked Amith to walk around the car and check to see that all the lamps, wipers, horn, electric windows/mirrors, etc were functioning properly.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Checking the coolant


The few minutes of idling helped coat the moving components of the engine with fresh oil poured a while back. Now that the engine was warmed up it was time to check the level of coolant. The coolant flows through the engine block where it absorbs the heat and then flows to the radiator from where it is released to the atmosphere.  Low coolant levels can seize an engine and therefore it is necessary to top-up the fluid during every service.


The coolant checking job was demonstrated by the technicians themselves. The coolant filler cap was slowly opened so that it gives a vent to release the pressure built up in the system to escape. The warning the technicians gave to Amith was that opening the cap quickly will just blast the coolant out and cause burn injuries to people around and damage components in the engine compartment. We don’t think Amith will forget this critical piece of information ever.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Checking the brake system


The last job carried during the ‘A Date with your Car’ service was checking of the tyres and brakes. Amith was taught how to check the depth of the treads on the tyres to determine if they needed to be changed. Low tread depth will cause serious concerns on a wet road where not enough water can be channelled from beneath the tyre and lead to loss of grip. The car was then raised on jacks and the tyres removed to inspect the braking system. Amith got to know how to check for brake disc and pad wear and that his Verna needed a set of new front pads soon. After cleaning the pads and greasing the caliper pins, the various parts were refitted.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Checking Brake Pad Wear


The brake system check job also teaches you something else, even if that is not part of the curriculum here – changing tyres. A great lesson to save you time when there is a puncture and you are stranded some place far from civilisation.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Removing the wheel


This completed the routine service of Amith’s Hyundai Verna and soon it was out of the workshop for a quick test drive. Amith immediately felt the smoothness in the way the engine revved. Soon afterwards the car was sent for a thorough exterior wash and polish and also interior vacuuming.


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Car Wash


Mahindra First Choice Services A Date With Your Car - Clean Engine Bay


The Verna has been Amith’s companion on trips for around six years and more than one lakh kilometres now. Though his hands got real messy, Amith thoroughly enjoyed getting to know its various systems and working on them and felt the connection he felt towards his ride grow closer. The expert guidance from the technicians at Mahindra First Choice Services had made it possible. We would recommend every enthusiast to give the ‘A Date with your Car’ DIY service program a try (only if your car is out of factory warranty) as it will definitely help you understand your car better and help you make the best decisions in the future about its upkeep.


Mahindra First Choice A Date With Your Car Experience Team


This is what YVS Vijay Kumar, CEO, Mahindra First Choice Services had to say about the DIY program: “Being a car enthusiast is all about feeling a connection with your car. The aim behind this initiative is to encourage car owners to come and service their cars themselves under MFCS’s guidance. With our skilled technicians, genuine MFC spare parts and state-of-the-art equipment we are committed to delivering the best car service. This initiative is also an endeavour to educate and empower our customers and is yet another step in our mission to build trust and transparency in the highly fragmented and unorganized car service industry.”


Mahindra First Choice Services currently has 340 workshops across 24 states so finding one in your city wouldn’t be a problem.