Uncover the Truth About Full Service History with Elite Garages

A car’s full service history is essentially a detailed record of all the maintenance and repairs it’s received throughout its life. But what does it mean for you, the car owner or potential buyer? Well, it’s a testament to the vehicle’s health, showcasing that it has been well looked after, from regular oil changes to cambelt replacements, tyre rotations and everything in between. A full service history indicates that a vehicle is less likely to surprise you with hidden mechanical issues down the line.

What to Look For In a Full Service History

When looking at a service history, it’s important to check for both regular maintenance and any repairs that may have been done. Most service schedules include oil changes, air filter replacements, tyre rotations and brake checks. These are all essential for keeping your car running smoothly and efficiently. It’s also important to look out for any notes on specific parts or components that may need attention in the near future.

A full service history is an invaluable resource for a vehicle owner or potential buyer, as it provides a comprehensive view of the car’s health and condition. By taking the time to examine a car’s service report, you can be sure that what you’re purchasing is safe and reliable.

Understanding Service History Terminology

When purchasing a used car, you may come across sellers mentioning the service history in various ways. Here are the commonly used phrases:

  1. Part service history (PSH): The car has some service stamps, but at least one is missing. There might have been a significant gap in time or mileage between services. It is highly recommended to inquire about the reason behind any missing stamps.
  2. Full service history (FSH): The car has the correct number of service stamps considering its age and mileage.
  3. Full dealership service history (FDSH): The car has the correct number of service stamps, and all services have been conducted by an authorised dealer.

Benefits of Having a Full Service History

Having a fully documented service history can provide you with many benefits, such as:

  • Increased resale value – Most buyers are willing to pay more for cars with complete records. A full service report also helps you set an accurate asking price and avoid any awkward negotiations when it comes time to sell your car.
  • Greater peace of mind – As mentioned, a full service history helps you avoid the risks associated with buying someone else’s vehicle. You can rest assured knowing that regular maintenance has been carried out and the car is in good working condition.
  • Improved performance – Over time, driving conditions and general wear and tear can take their toll on your vehicle’s performance. Regular maintenance helps to keep your car running smoothly and efficiently.
  • Cost saving – Regular servicing keeps your vehicle running in top condition, meaning you don’t have to pay a fortune for costly repairs later on.

Making Sense of Service Intervals

When it comes to maintaining a car’s health, sticking to recommended service intervals is crucial. Generally, a car should be serviced every 12,000 miles or every 12 months, whichever comes first. However, this can vary based on the vehicle make, model, age, and the type of service required – be it an interim service, full service, or a major service. Regular servicing at these recommended intervals not only keeps your car running smoothly but also contributes to that all-important full service history.

Also Read: How to Save Money and Retain a Good Resale Value

Buying a Second-Hand Car: What to Look Out For

If you’re in the market for a second-hand car, a full service history can be a golden ticket. It provides an insight into the vehicle’s past, including whether it’s received timely oil changes, wheel alignments, brake checks, battery replacements, and other necessary maintenance. When buying a used car, always ask for the full service history. It’s an important factor to consider, alongside the car’s make, model, age, mileage and condition.

It’s also worth keeping an eye out for any warning signs, such as sluggish performance, strange noises and excess smoke. These could indicate potential problems with the engine or other parts of the vehicle, so be sure to get them checked out by a qualified mechanic before making your purchase.

These are just some of the key points to consider when it comes to full service histories and buying second-hand cars. By taking the time to research and evaluate a car’s history, you can be sure that you’re getting the best value for money.

Can You Sell a Car Without a Full Service History?

Yes, you can sell a car without a full service history, but it might be a little more challenging. Potential buyers may be more hesitant as the absence of a full service history can create uncertainty about the vehicle’s past and its current condition. However, if the car is in good shape and has been recently serviced, it might still appeal to buyers who are more interested in the vehicle’s current condition than its past.

What to Do if Your Car Doesn’t Have a Full Service History?

If you haven’t been keeping a full service history, it’s not too late to start. You can always take your car to an authorised service centre for a comprehensive checkup, which will give you a better understanding of the car’s overall condition and any necessary maintenance that might need to be done.

You can also start keeping a record of all future services and repairs, so you always have a clear timeline of your car’s service history. Doing this will ensure your vehicle is in top shape for years to come – as well as help increase its resale value down the line.

To access the car’s service history online, you can reach out to the vehicle manufacturer’s dealership and request the records if they have maintained the car. When purchasing, the seller may provide the digital service history as evidence. In case the manufacturer did not service the car, you can search for the garages that performed the repairs.

Visit the official gov.uk website to access the necessary information from the DVLA using the registration number. Additionally, you can verify if there are any pending safety recalls, check the car’s insurance status, and find out when its road tax and MOT expire.


In conclusion, having access to your car’s full service history is invaluable in terms of increased resale value, peace of mind and improved performance. Whether you’re looking to buy a second-hand car or maintain your existing vehicle, it’s important to take the time to understand and document its service history.

If your car doesn’t have a full service history on record, there are still steps you can take to get up to speed – including seeking an expert opinion and starting from scratch. Taking this proactive approach will ensure that your car remains safe, reliable and in top condition for years to come.


Click the + to read any answer or visit our most FAQ page to review the most frequently asked questions across all our Elite Locations.

If you click on a ‘Category’ or ‘Tag’ link, the page will ‘refresh’ and reload the page showing the top of the page first, you’ll then just need to scroll down to the FAQ section to see the results for the Category or Tag you selected.

Buying a car without service history can be risky. Without knowing about the previous owner’s maintenance habits, it is impossible to tell whether the car was well-maintained or not. If there are major issues that need to be addressed and you don’t have any records of them being serviced in the past, you could end up paying for costly repairs down the line. It is important to make sure all necessary maintenance has been performed on any car you are considering purchasing, regardless of service history. You should also always have a professional inspect the vehicle before buying it. This will help ensure that any potential issues can be identified and addressed before you commit to the purchase.

The service history of a vehicle holds immense significance in determining its value. A car with a comprehensive service history holds greater appeal compared to one without, as it signifies that previous owners have diligently cared for and maintained the vehicle throughout its lifespan. Generally, a missing or incomplete service history can adversely impact the vehicle’s price, potentially reducing it by 10% to 20%. Given the high expectations of buyers, it is crucial to offer a considerable discount off the asking price in such cases.

HPI Clear is a designation for a car, motorbike, van, or any other motorised vehicle registered in the UK, that has undergone an HPI Check and has no negative recorded data. This certification serves as the ultimate assurance, providing complete peace of mind when purchasing a pre-owned vehicle.