If you want to get the most out of your vehicle, you must keep up with its maintenance, and part of doing that is making sure you change the oil at the recommended intervals. There are a ton of places that offer oil change services, but today we will look at Jiffy Lube vs Dealerships—which one is better?
Dealerships are more often a better choice for service than a Jiffy Lube. Dealer technicians are highly trained, brand-specific, and tend to focus on quality. Fast service centers tend to focus on price and speed.
Let’s take a closer look at both options to see how they compare.
Jiffy Lube: According to Jiffy Lube, each one of the service technicians working on your vehicle has undergone training at their Jiffy Lube University. Through a combination of computer-based instruction (training videos) and on-the-job training, employees become skilled in “preventative maintenance”. However, this is a short course and there is no way that anyone could learn the ins and outs of every vehicle in less than a week.
Dealership: To become a dealer technician, employees must hold a degree or certification from an automotive service technology program. Furthermore, dealerships supply specific, ongoing training that focuses on the type of vehicle they specialize in fixing.
Conclusion: As a customer, I would feel much better knowing that the person who is working on my vehicle has experience with that make and model and knows the specific things to avoid or watch for on my vehicle.
Jiffy Lube: According to Indeed, the average pay for an Automotive Technician at Jiffy Lube is $13.46 an hour, with Denver being the highest paying position at $17 an hour. Not only is this a low-paying job with a high turnover rate, but many of the employees are trained to push services that customers may not necessarily need.
Dealership: While quick-service shops such as Jiffy Lube focus on getting a lot of people in and out of the shop quickly throughout the day, dealerships focus more on building lasting relationships and earning repeat customers. Additionally, most dealerships will not try to upsell a list of services to you. They are there to fix your vehicles’ problems, and nothing more.
Conclusion: As a customer, would I rather visit a shop where I am just another number and have employees trying to intimidate me into buying hundreds of dollars worth of services that I do not need, or would I rather go to a place where the employees have remained with the company for quite a few years and their sole concern is fixing the issue with my vehicle?
Jiffy Lube: As a rule, all vehicles are serviced with aftermarket parts at Jiffy Lube. Additionally, most shops use generic oil for their basic service packages and do not look up recommendations for each vehicle. However, some locations may ask you if you want to use the manufacturer-recommended oil, and more expensive packages typically give you better quality oil.
Dealership: Dealerships will use OEM parts to fix/service your vehicle. If OEM parts are not available, they may use aftermarket parts. Furthermore, when having your vehicle serviced at a dealership, there is a better chance that they will have parts in stock if an unexpected repair comes up. Otherwise, you might have to wait for another shop to order the part, which could take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
Conclusion: If you would rather use OEM parts on your vehicle, then you will want to go to the dealership. However, if you are not worried about voiding your warranty or do not mind using aftermarket parts Jiffy Lube could work for you.
Jiffy Lube: A quick look through reviews show that there are a lot of mixed opinions about quick change services such as Jiffy Lube. Some people claim they use them all the time and love them, but more people have said that they were sold services they did not need (and were not recommended for their vehicle) or the untrained staff broke something on their car.
Dealerships: While you might expect more people to have had a positive experience at the dealership, this is also a mixed bag of reviews. However, far fewer people complain about shady business practices. Most of the complaints center around things not being covered under warranty when they should have been.
Conclusion: Although both had their share of mixed reviews, dealerships had more positive reviews overall, with many customers pointing out that they had built a relationship with their dealership over time. A relationship that cannot be built at a quick chance shop.
Jiffy Lube: One thing that Jiffy Lube does have going for them is speed. They are quick, and if you do not have much time, or you just don’t like to wait around, you might like how quickly a quick-change shop can get you in and out. However, don’t expect too many extra services from the shop.
Dealerships: While they may not be as fast, they offer more services to their customers. Their waiting rooms are usually much nicer and include things like snacks and coffee, most have a shuttle system that will take you where you need to go while you wait, and others may be able to get customers a rental car while their vehicle is out of commission.
Conclusion: Like most customers, I would prefer to go somewhere that offers the extra amenities because they are useful. However, in many cases, you end up paying for those extras in the long run.
Jiffy Lube: Although the actual price of service will depend on your location, the average cost of services for an oil change are listed below:
- Conventional Service: $39.99
- High Mileage Service: $60.99
- Synthetic Blend Service: $64.99
- Full Synthetic: $76.99
- Full Synthetic with Hyper Cleansing: $89.99
They also offer several other services which range in price from $9.99 for Battery Terminal Cleaning to $120 for an Automatic Transmission Drain and Fill.
Dealership: One of the biggest misconceptions that people hold is that it will cost much more to get their oil changed at the dealership, but depending on where you go, this may not be true at all. The exact price will change depending on where you go, but many dealerships have package deals that include services that Jiffy Lube does not provide.
For example, one dealership said that for $64.95 you could get a full synthetic oil change, a multi-point inspection, a wash and vacuum, and have all the vehicles fluids topped off.
Conclusion: It ultimately depends on where you go and how much you want to spend. If you don’t have a lot of money and want to roll the dice, a $39.99 oil change might work just fine. However, if you want to ensure that you get the most for your money, it might be wise to call around and compare the different dealership prices in your area.
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John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.