When returning a vehicle on business contract hire, it may be subject to certain charges. Often you will be invoiced to cover anything that falls outside of fair wear and tear or replace missing item.
A leasing company should make it clear from the start what falls outside of fair wear and tear. A leasing company should make it clear from the start what falls outside of fair wear and tear. If this is your first time returning a car, it can be confusing.
The 10 Steps For Returning A Business Contract Hire Vehicle
1. Do return the vehicle with all the books it was issued with.
This will make your life a lot easier. If you return a vehicle with a lost service book, you’ll probably receive a phone call every day until it’s found again. Salesmen don’t enjoy trying to sell vehicles without evidence of its service history.
2. Don’t return the vehicle without checking the exterior damage.
Dents are often difficult to see in photographs due to the reflection in the paint, which can sometimes lead people to argue they’ve being charged unfairly. To give you peace of mind, check what damage you’ve inflicted onto the car. Make sure you check the driver’s collection form. If both parties know what damage is on the vehicle from the start, it will avoid any confusion.
3. Do replace your emergency inflation kit if you’ve used the one that came with the car.
If your vehicle doesn’t have a spare wheel, it may have come with an emergency inflation kit. Hopefully, you have never needed to use it. But if you do, the leasing company may ask you to replace it before it returns to them.
4. Don’t return a vehicle with tyres below 1.6mm of tread (spare included)
Vehicles with illegal and unsafe tread depths are not acceptable. Collection drivers have the right to refuse to drive an unsafe and illegal vehicle. Aborted collections are not cheap, and the cost will be passed on to the end user
5. Do give the vehicle a good clean
It certainly won’t hurt to clean the car inside and out. Interiors with noticeable odours are unacceptable in the industry and may be subject to a cleaning charge. A clean will also give you a chance to thoroughly check you have removed all personal items from the car.
6. Don’t ever lose the locking wheel nut
Just like the service book, leasing companies are very protective of their locking wheel nuts. Most car manufacturers do not make it easy to replace them. A good rule of thumb is to always keep it in the car; you never want to be stuck on a hard shoulder with a flat tyre and no wheel nut.
7. Do return the vehicle with all the keys issued.
Replacement keys are expensive. Some models have a lot of electronics that will need to go to a main dealer for coding, costing both time and money. If you were given two and one goes missing, you will be asked to find it or pay for it.
8. Don’t return a vehicle without breakdown membership card. (If it came with one)
Leasing companies often offer breakdown service as an option with contract hire packages. For example, AMI Business Contract Hire +Maintenance customers receive an AA fleet membership card when their manufacturer break down expires for their vehicle.
9. Do make sure you remember the parcel shelf
Parcel shelves are one of the easiest things to forget. You need to get something in the boot one day, you chuck it in the hallway and before you know it, it’s become part of the furniture. Lessors don’t care where you put your parcel shelf whilst your driving the car, but they will care if it’s not in the car on its return.
10. Don’t forget to return the NavDisc/SD card
Missing nav discs or SD cards are deemed as unacceptable things to lose; you will be charged for replacements. They can range anywhere from £50-£200 depending on your car.
Download Our Fair Wear and Tear Guide
If you think you’ve been charged unfairly, or perhaps you have unanswered questions about damage and wear and tear? You may wish to download the AMI Fair Wear & Tear Guide. It’ll give you a thorough walk through of industry standard fair wear and tear on business contract hire.