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North Wales cheapest place to service car

(Adobe Stock)

The average independent garage charges £47.47 per hour and it’s risen less than the rate of inflation over the last eight years.

A survey of 3,338 repair shops which are members of the Independent Garage Association found that this year the typical cost in England was £47.90, in Scotland it was £45.52, Wales worked out at £40.61 and Northern Ireland was £40.55.

Inside the M25 the hourly rate was about £55.48 but that’s not the dearest area, which is the Isle of Wight at £75 an hour.

Compared to average rate of inflation exceeding 2.5% over each of the eight years, the rise in garage labour rate rate has been 6.7% for the same period as a whole and that actual money paid out has risen just £5.88.

The small, locally owned family businesses look after the bulk of Britain’s cars and vans and IGA ceo Stuart James said, “It’s clear the independent garage sector continues to offer exceptional value to its customers.

“However, in real terms the sector is falling behind inflation meaning garage businesses are seeing diminishing returns year on year.”

He added that the figures showed the IGA members were absorbing costs and this is unsustainable in the long-term.

For working on the spanners and software the UK typical technician is paid £13.65 an hour and they are about 26.3% below the rise for other manual occupations, according to data from the Office of National Statistics.

The main costs to garages are insurance policies, which have decreased over eight years, and electricity which has gone up over 42%.

Robin Roberts
Automotive news & features

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