U.S. driver satisfaction with oil changes, full services and tire replacements declined, JD Power’s study shows
2 hours ago
Through Chris Chilton
Labor costs at some official dealerships can be shockingly high, so it’s no wonder many of us turn to aftermarket service providers when it comes time to change our car’s oil or tires. But a recent survey by JD Power suggests we’re becoming increasingly dissatisfied with those aftermarket providers.
The JD Power 2023 US Aftermarket Service Index (ASI) study, now in its fourth year, revealed that overall satisfaction declined year over year in the three categories considered: rapid oil changes, full-service maintenance and repair, and tire replacement.
But despite the declines, the survey also found that drivers rated the aftermarket industry’s advocacy (basically taking care of the customer and putting their needs first) as equal to that of official dealers. Net Promoter Scores (NPS) for aftermarket outfits were even better than dealer scores for full-service maintenance and repair, trailing only a fraction when it comes to tire replacements, but falling behind when considering oil changes.
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What’s really interesting is that the underperforming aftermarket centers could easily boost their scores with some very simple changes that have nothing to do with how they do the work that is done on customers’ cars. Businesses that offered free snacks and drinks and a place to plug in their phone and laptop consistently received more points than those that didn’t. The survey found that only 7 percent of respondents were offered a place to plug in a laptop.
So how did your favorite aftermarket service brand fare? Looking at the full-service maintenance and repair category, Christian Brothers Automotive is at the top of the list, significantly ahead of second-placed Meineke Car Care. Meanwhile, Mr. Tire can support the table.
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Express Oil Change topped the lubrication list, and Walmart finished last in the same category, while Goodyear Auto Service beat Discount tire to take the rubber crown, and Mavis Discount Tire finished last, leaving Walmart from the bottom in two of the three categories ended up.
This year’s ASI is based on feedback from 11,194 drivers collected between January and March 2023, all of whom have paid for some service with an aftermarket outfit in the past 12 months. But another recent study found that many drivers had to put off servicing their vehicle because they couldn’t afford it.