Auto Repair 101: Finding An Affordable Mechanic
Dealing with auto repairs isn't easy, but it can much easier with the tips and advice you're about to read. No one wants to find out that their car needs work done. However, it doesn't have to break your bank or make you want to rip your hair out in the moment.
Get a reliable battery charger and be sure it is always in your car. Having a dead battery can leave you stranded in some pretty terrible places. It is also important to understand how to properly connect the charger to the battery.
Ask a mechanic any questions you may have regarding your car when bringing it in to their shop. You should ask things specific to the problem that has arisen and how you can take preventive action going forward. One of the best ways to save on car maintenance is to prevent problems in the first place. A little money spent for prevention can save thousands in the future.
Make sure the oil in your vehicle is changed about every 3,000 miles. Waiting longer for an oil change can result in dirt and debris fouling your oil and that can damage your engine. If you use synthetic oil in your vehicle, you only need to change the filter every other oil change.
Know what your costs will be before handing your keys over to the mechanic. If you need clarification, ask the service advisor for additional information before repairs commence. Being hit with additional fees is something that you don't want to be surprised with.
Look for an auto repair shop that displays their certifications for everyone to see. Get a good look at it to make sure that they are current. Even if they are certified, that does not guarantee quality work, but there is a greater chance of the work getting done correctly.
Always ask lots of questions when you take your car to get repaired. Don't let the mechanic intimidate you. Ask why something needs to be fixed or how it will be done. If the mechanic tries to brush you off, doesn't look at you, or refuses to answer your questions, consider taking your car to someone else.
Be open to asking any questions that cross your mind. Auto repair is a very complex thing. You will have questions, and don't feel intimidated about asking them. If you don't, you may not completely understand why the repairs were needed in the first place or how costly the current situation really is.
The Automotive Service Excellence logo is a sign that you have found a good mechanic. Mechanics have to successfully pass an exam and maintain an excellent record to receive this logo. Not all good mechanics get this certification but you should still try finding a mechanic who is ASE certified.
Take your vehicle to a full service car wash a couple times a year for an extensive cleaning, inside and out. This removes most of the soil and helps preserve the interior of your car. This can pay off when you want to sell or trade your car in for a newer one.
Understand how the repair shop you are considering charges before signing any agreements. Some shops will charge a flat fee for labor, while others base it off of time. Some will opt for original parts, while others will use generics. Know what you have ahead of you before being accountable.
Unless it is required by your car's warranty, don't feel obligated to use the repair shop at the dealership. There are many reputable independent auto repair shops and they are often cheaper. Ask your friends and family members for a recommendation if you are unsure which shops in your area are trustworthy.
Make sure that the auto repair shop you go to offers a warranty on their services. There are plenty of repair shops that will do a shoddy job, and there is nothing you can do about that if you have no warranty. A warranty will give you the opportunity to get the problem fixed for no charge.
D not fall for the "free oil change" trick. This is just a way for someone to convince you that unnecessary things need to be done to your vehicle. Most of the time, low-quality oil is used and it is not good for your car. Stick with using the type of oil the manufacturer recommends.
If you are considering a do-it-yourself auto repair, make very sure that you know what you are getting in to. Get a qualified quote for having a professional do the work for you, then determine what it will take in parts and tools for you to do it yourself. It could very well be that you will not save that much and will be risking things such as safety and reliability of your vehicle.
Put the advice that has been discussed here to use as you deal with your vehicle repairs. You will notice that you are much less stressed and actually have a good plan for everything. No longer are you going to suffer through those decisions, wondering if you did the right thing.