Independents-oil-change_smlIndependent garages have increased their share of oil changes carried out, while franchised dealers witnessed a drop for the third year in a row.

Research by Castrol shows that the independent sector now conducts a third of its oil changes on vehicles aged between zero and four years old.

This increase in work on younger vehicles comes about even though there is a decline in the oil change market, due to the longer service periods and oil change intervals.

Marc Perkins, Independent Workshop Marketing Manager at Castrol, said: “With fewer oil changes taking place each year, it’s clear to see that many independent outlets are working hard to increase the number of operations they carry out.

“Almost a third of owners with newer vehicles are now visiting independent workshops for oil changes, testament to the quality and value offered by many of these outlets.”

The percentage of oil changes carried out by the independent sector for the overall car parc has risen from 62 per cent to 68 per cent, with the sector increasing their share of car aged between five and nine years old to 65.5 per cent.

This rise is against the odds with the steady decline in the total number of oil changes carried out each year. However, independents are being encouraged to sell up to their customers by using premium oil in order to maximise their profits.

Perkins added: “While independent workshops may be capturing more oil change business than ever, they can actually improve lubricants profitability by upselling premium oil to customers, which typically generate greater profitability from every litre sold.

“If workshop staff take the opportunity to illustrate the benefits of high-quality, manufacturer recommended oil, many customers will be receptive to the idea of spending a little more for a lubricant that is recognized as the best for their vehicle.”

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