There was also a concerning number of drivers who didn't know about new MOT rules.

It's been over 15 years since the law was changed to make sure that vehicle services from independent garages don't invalidate warranties, but it appears nearly half of Britain's car owners still aren't aware of the ruling.

According to new research by nationwide servicing and repair chain Halfords Autocentres 44 percent of motorists don't know of the Block Exemption Regulation introduced by the European Union in October 2003, which declared that so long as manufacturer parts were used, services at a non-franchise dealer would no longer invalidate a car's manufacturer warranty.

Mechanic in service garage examining lifted vehicle

The Roadworthiness Quiz, which surveyed 22,000 motorists, also found that 40 percent of drivers are unaware of the new MOT rules which came into effect last year which tests items like diesel particulate filters, reversing lamps and dashboard warning lights. It also revealed that 40 percent of drivers don't know the minimum legal tyre tread depth and don;t know how to correctly identify the date stamp on their tyres to tell how old they are.

A further 22 percent didn't know about the law against driving with an empty screenwash bottle, despite the fact it could lead to a fine of up to £1,000 and three penalty points.

"Many motorists are put off essential car maintenance by the fear of main dealer pricing," said Andy Randall, Halfords Autocentres Managing Director. "We offer great value services that often exceed the manufacturer’s recommendations, and will not affect the cars warranty. A quick visit to your local Autocentre could be the difference between arriving safely at your destination or breaking down on the way."

Mechanic working under car at repair garage

Richard Leonard, Highways England Head of Road Safety, added: "We want all drivers to arrive at their destinations safely, and we urge Motorists to make sure they are ready for their journey by checking their vehicles beforehand."

"Simple checks of things like tyre tread and pressure, along with making sure you have plenty of fuel and oil in the vehicle, can all help to prevent breakdowns. This quiz will helpfully remind people about the importance of those checks."