Do drivers know when to call a mechanic?
Last year, more than 11,000 people called us out for a problem with their car when it turned out their vehicle was fine or they just needed some advice and reassurance.2
Of those, nearly 1 in 10 of the cases our mechanics attended were because the driver didn’t press in the clutch or brake pedal to start the car.
Other top reasons why people called us out include:
- Seeing a warning light on the dashboard although the car was safe to drive.
- Worrying about a leak which turned out to be the air con dripping.
- Not being able to turn the ignition on because the steering lock was on.
Not everyone’s confident with problem-solving their vehicles and we’ve all been flummoxed by complex tech at times. If in doubt, it’s always best to call out the experts for a second opinion.
Are do-it-yourself drivers turning to Google?
When it comes to understanding how your car works, it seems like Google has the answers. We looked at how many people search Google for help with their car to see which drivers are willing to do it themselves.3
Which region has the most self-sufficient drivers?
Yorkshire and Humberside lead the way when it comes to solving car problems online. Almost twice as many people in that region search Google for driving-related help as in Wales, which has the lowest number of searches.
Out of every city in the UK, London has the highest proportion of people searching online for ways to carry out tasks and checks on their vehicle. Sheffield has the lowest number of people searching Google.
What’s the most commonly Googled car query?
No matter where you live, the query that’s searched for the most is how to find out what oil your car needs. That’s followed by people asking Google questions on how to check tyre pressure.
How does the UK compare to the rest of the world?
Our analysis also looked at global search trends on Google. We focused on other English-speaking nations to see how the UK compares in terms of self-sufficiency when it comes to car maintenance.
According to our data, the UK’s searches are higher per population than any English-speaking country, closely followed by Ireland and Australia. The 2 countries that searched the least per population were the US and South Africa.
Globally, changing a tyre or a wheel was the most common search. It came out highly in the top 3 nations of UK, Ireland and Australia, as well as in New Zealand.
There's no harm calling the experts
Whether you’re a dab hand under the bonnet or are slightly unsure, it never hurts to call in the experts.
With AA Membership, you get unlimited call-outs (as long as it’s not a recurring problem) so you can call us whenever you need to.
Read our advice for car checks you can do yourself: