Thursday, 27 October 2011

Good Garage Scheme Launches Free Android App

Within months of the launch of its successful iPhone app, the Good Garage Scheme is proud to announce that it is able to offer the same great product to all Android app users.
The new Android app helps motorists find a reliable local garage anywhere in the UK and has all of the superb features of the iPhone app including handy tips on saving fuel and caring for your car.
After only seven months on the market, The Sunday Times' writers and experts recognised the Good Garage Scheme iPhone app as a "Money Saving App for Motorists" (The Sunday Times - 10 July 2011) and then went on to feature it in The Sunday Times' The App List, a list of the Top 500 Apps in the World!
Rachel Greasby, General Manager of the Good Garage Scheme, is proud of the help on offer to both motorists unsure of where to take their cars as well as those stranded with a broken-down vehicle.
The Good Garage Scheme is like having a friend in the know” she says, “often at a time when you need a friend most."
The mobile app is the ideal friend in this situation. It finds your nearest Good Garage Scheme member and helps you get in touch. Everyone needs a friend like that!” says Rachel Greasby.
Downloading the new app means you are never far away from a garage you can trust and it won’t cost you a penny. Visit the Android Market and download your free Good Garage Scheme app.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

BBC Watchdog Highlights Diesel Particulate Filter Issue

Last week, investigation series Watchdog picked up on a motor problem that city drivers with diesel vehicles are encountering as a result of stop/start driving.

Presenter, Chris Hollins, explained how city cars are the perfect solution for urban drivers, but how diesel engines can struggle with short distance driving as the Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) can become blocked with soot. 

The DPF is a part in the exhaust which traps soot and reduces emissions. The part usually cleans itself when the engine runs at high speeds - a process called regeneration, but if the vehicle has not been run at a high speed for a while, a warning light may appear to indicate that the filter is becoming blocked. 

It must then be cleared by driving the car at high revs for a sustained period of time. Watchdog highlighted how this can easily be done on the open road but is much more difficult to do around town.
Watchdog reported that they had received over 200 complaints from consumers about problems with Diesel Particulate Filters from a range of manufacturers. The programme continued to outline that many of these drivers had to fork out hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of pounds for mechanics to rectify the problem. 
The Good Garage Scheme's member garages can help with a treatment for a blocked Diesel Particulate Filter that aims to combat the adverse affects of stop/start driving on diesel vehicles. 
Angelo Chillari, Administrator of the Good Garage Scheme, said: “The fact that Watchdog has outlined this problem shows how common it actually is. Our member garages can offer a treatment that has been developed to economically benefit the consumer, as complete replacement of the filter is costly and can also prove to be a recurring problem.”

If you are having any problems with your diesel particulate filter, contact your nearest Good Garage Scheme member for further advice

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Good Garage Scheme turns up the volume of BEN charity

The Good Garage Scheme presented a set of wireless microphones as a gift to the Coventry day care centre of BEN the automotive industry charity at the end of last month.
They have also helped in raising the charity’s profile via their social media outlets. With over 3,000 member garages, and tens of thousands of website hits each month, the Good Garage Scheme has proven a valuable channel for BEN to make itself known.

Funds were raised in July to buy the day centre their chosen donation through an office summer beach party as part of National BEN week. It involved staff at the Good Garage Scheme Head Office dressing up in beach clothes and having a picnic lunch.
Lynn Walker, Day Centre Manager said: “It was a pleasant surprise when we found out we were getting a donation, we knew of the Good Garage Scheme but it was a shock to get something like this offered to us out of the blue. We are very grateful, as the microphones will be invaluable to us due to the fact they are wireless and aren’t restricted to where they travel. They will also help us to project our voices to residents who are hard of hearing during activities.”
Anndi Sheppard, marketing manager at the Good Garage Scheme, made the presentation on 29th September. She said: “We were able to see first hand the great work that the Arthur Wilson House (Coventry day care centre) do. The staff do so much for the residents there, and it makes you want to help all you can.”

BEN is the UK’s only dedicated charity that helps those who work or have worked in the automotive industries. The Good Garage Scheme are keen to support the positive work they do which encompasses a variety of practical methods such as support, financial and emotional advice and care centres to better the lives of those in their care.

Kelly Neal, Events Manager from BEN said: “We are very grateful to the Good Garage Scheme for taking part in our National BEN Week campaign. They have helped in promoting BEN to all their members. Good Garage Scheme is a great BEN ambassador and they always help us promote the work of BEN and raise brand awareness in the industry.  We look forward to our continued work with them.”

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Wet weather? Get a grip and slow down

Driving in Autumn – 

Wet weather? Get a grip and slow down

The British climate is renowned for its consistent rainfall, which can cause a number of problems for drivers on its roads. The Good Garage Scheme offers some sound advice on what precautions to take when driving in the wet weather this autumn.
 Slow down

One of the fundamental parts of conquering the wet roads is to reduce the speed at which you travel. The three main controls of steering, braking and accelerating are all less effective under wet conditions so slowing down and gentle use of these controls will enable you to manage the car more steadily.
 Increase your following distance

The usual 2-second rule should at least be doubled in wet conditions. Brakes are not as responsive in the rain; therefore this will allow you more time to think and react and will greatly reduce the chance of a collision.

Be aware of floodwater

Make sure you show great caution to any water that has collected at the side of roads as this can cover up potholes as well as creating further risk of aquaplaning.
 On approaching deep water on the road

Don’t panic! When driving through deeper sections of water you should always keep your engine revving, moving at a constant yet slow speed.
If a stall does occur, manual vehicles may be able to drive out of the water using the starter motor, removing spark plugs beforehand as this can lower compression and enable the starter to turn more easily. If this is not possible then the better option is to have someone tow you out.
After passing through deep water it is also important that you check your brakes, as they will probably be saturated and not functioning properly.
For more driving tips from the Good Garage Scheme, please visit

Thursday, 13 October 2011

October is Tyre Safety Month – Have you checked your tyres recently?

October is Tyre Safety Month for 2011 is focussing on the perils of driving in winter and what can be done to improve road and vehicle safety during this period.
With the treacherous road conditions seen in the previous two winters and the distinct possibility of more of the same this year, now is the time to prepare, before the harsh conditions take their toll.
Roadworthy tyres are essential as the only parts of the car that are in constant contact with the road. Various weather types such as rain, ice and snow exacerbate road hazards and make the necessity of good grip on the roads an ever-increasing necessity.
Winter tyres receive a lot of press attention, especially at this time of year but equally, if not more important, is the need to check your tyres’ tread depths and the air pressure in them. See here for TyreSafe’s “Magnificent 7” tyre safety tips. 
If your tyres are found not to be roadworthy, you are not only risking having an accident but you can also risk incurring a hefty fine of £2,500 and three penalty points per illegal tyre, which could ultimately add up to a £10,000 fine and disqualification.
To find a Good Garage Scheme member offering a Winter Check, which includes carrying out a tyre report, assessing your tyres’ condition, tread and pressures, please go to

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Peace of mind with a Winter Check

Winter is just around the corner

It’s never too early to check that your car is in tip-top condition to take on the challenges of winter driving.  Make sure you remember where you have stored your ice scraper so you are ready for the first frosty morning. Ensuring your car is running as effectively as possible before the cold snap sets in not only helps improve your safety on the roads but can also help prevent costly repairs.
What if I don’t bother?

Leave it to chance and you could face a host of winter woes. Driving with incorrect tyre pressure and tread on slippery roads presents obvious dangers, while good visibility is also vital. Ensuring correct tyre pressure and tread and topping up your windscreen washer are therefore essential to help prevent you endangering yourself and other road users.
 Let a Good Garage Scheme member give your car the ‘once over’ before winter

The Good Garage Scheme’s comprehensive 20-point Winter Check is the perfect solution to help you avoid hitting the skids this winter. The essential winter motoring package includes checking:

•    The condition and levels of antifreeze
•    Engine oil and brake fluid
•    Brakes and tyres
•    Windscreens
•    Wipers and lights
How can I find someone to help make sure my car is ready for winter?

Simply visit and type in your postcode to find your nearest Good Garage Scheme member garage offering the Winter Check.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Good Garage Scheme customer wins iPod for singing garage's praises

It was like music to the ears of Brenda Hare, a long-standing customer of Good Garage Scheme member Ivybridge Motors in Devon, when she was told she had won a brand new Apple iPod touch.

Brenda was thrilled to be selected from over 20,000 feedback entries received over a three-month period by member garages across the UK. 

As a regular customer of Ivybridge Motors, Brenda said in her feedback: “Although I have moved away from Ivybridge and now live closer to Exeter, I will continue to use this garage as I can be absolutely certain that they will deliver excellent service every time I need help. I would travel even further to stay with them as it’s so important to find a garage whose staff you can trust and whose quality of work is second to none.”

Good Garage Scheme customers are encouraged to provide feedback to garages so that visitors to the website can make an educated decision when they are choosing a garage to service or repair their vehicle.

 Ivybridge Motors have maintained a five star rating since they joined the scheme in 2009 and Service Manager, Chris Howells, was happy to present Brenda with her new iPod touch.

Brenda continued: “I was thrilled when Chris told me that I had won the prize. I’m so pleased for Chris and all his team that they get the recognition they truly deserve via this excellent scheme.”

Brenda will now have the opportunity to download the Good Garage Scheme’s free app so she can find a Good Garage Scheme member no matter where she travels in the UK.

The Good Garage Scheme has recently launched their Christmas feedback prize draw. The winner of the prize draw on the 16th December will have a choice of prizes including an iPod touch, SatNav, Blu-ray player or Nintendo Wii.


Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Government reveal plans to increase motorway speeds

In recent news, the Government announced it would like to increase the speed limit on motorways in England and Wales from 70 to 80 mph. It argues that it is sensible because motorists are already driving over 70 mph and it could cut journey times.
Transport Secretary Phillip Hammond said the current limit introduced in the 1960s "was out of date", but green campaigners say it will harm the environment and cause more deaths on the road.
According to the Good Garage Scheme’s website, staying at or within the speed limit not only increases driver safety but also reduces CO2 emissions and saves money on fuel costs.
At 70 mph motorists could be using up to 9% more fuel than at 60 mph and up to 15% more fuel than at 50 mph. Driving faster may make the journey time quicker but could cost more in both fuel and the increased cost of policing the motorways.
The new ruling wouldn’t be implemented until 2013 at the earliest - provided it gets the go-ahead, but there is a lot to debate in the meantime.
For more fuel saving tips, visit