Tips For Avoiding Costly Auto Repair Mishaps
If you feel uneasy about trusting the first opinion you get on what is wrong with your car, do not feel bad about this. It is in fact a very good thing. Always ask questions and insist that a mechanic justify any major repairs that he or she is recommending.
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.
Independent garages and mechanics are usually much cheaper than dealerships. You might get a discount at your dealership if you purchased your car recently but do not make a habit of going to your dealership if you find their prices too expensive. Find out about local independent garages with a good reputation instead.
Take action if you believe a garage or dealership ripped you off. Notify one of the manager and give them a chance to issue a refund. If you are still not satisfied, contact your local Better Business Bureau to file a complaint. Your city or state consumer affair office is also a good resource.
Ask your auto mechanic about their A.S.E. certification. The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence has a test twice a year for it. To earn this certification, mechanics must pass a written test while also having about two years of work experience in auto mechanics and repair. This certification increases your chances of finding competent mechanics.
Keep a basic repair kit in your car trunk at all times. A simple kit consisting of wrenches, jumper cables, screws, and a jack can be a lifesaver if your car breaks down on the road. This will allow you to make small repairs on the spot, saving you the cost of an expensive tow truck.
Some untrustworthy shops will give you old tires in the place of your original tires. They usually do this to make a quick buck from you. Prior to entering, mark your tires with chalk. After the repair is complete, check to see that the chalk is still on your tires.
If a part on your car has to be replaced, get an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) part. If you want your car to run at the highest possible level, it is important not to just put any old generic part in your vehicle. While OEM parts cost more, they are worth it in the end.
You should always pay attention to the way your car smells. An unpleasant smell is usually caused by a leak or an electrical short. It is best not to drive your car and find a mechanic who can come inspect it to determine what is causing the strong smell.
One of the trickiest ways that shady mechanics rip customers off is by adding repairs that weren’t agreed to in the beginning. This helps them give you the impression that you are getting a great deal. Tell them you have to think about it before accepting the deal.
When you purchase certain items at auto parts stores, they will install them for free. Keep this in mind when you go and pick them up. For example, a new set of windshield wipers is around five dollars. An auto parts store will usually install them for you for free, while an auto body shop will charge you around $50.
If you have a major issue that threatens safety in a new car, talk to the manufacturer. It may be a recall issue if multiple people report the same problem. Usually, manufacturers will repair your car.
If you are looking to extend your car’s life, do not accelerate too quickly immediately after starting it up. Especially in cold weather, racing the engine of your car will result in it deteriorating more quickly and contributing to accelerated wear and tear. Rather, accelerate slowly when you begin to drive.
Good auto repair happens due to consistency. Take your vehicle to the same auto shop once you have found a good one. The same mechanic will know your car inside and out and will be best qualified to work on it. This means that your car repairs may end up costing you more.
Be sure to get a written estimate from your auto mechanic before he does nay work on your car. Even if he tells you a price verbally, you should try getting it down on paper. Many states do not allow anyone to charge too much more than the estimate given at the beginning.
Ask if you can go for a short test drive with a mechanic after getting your car fixed. Do not pay for the repairs until you are sure the issue is fixed. If you still hear the noise that caused you to bring the car to the mechanic in the first place, do not hesitate to ask for a refund.
Ask your mechanic if he is willing to use re-manufactured or salvaged parts. Using these parts can save you hundreds of dollars and is good for the environment as well. If he is unwilling to use them you may want to find someone else to work on your vehicle, as there really is no reason not to.
Pay attention to any peculiar noises your car is making. When your car is making noise, there is generally something wrong. Describing the noise to a mechanic may make it simpler for him to figure out what is wrong.
If you plan on storing your car for long periods of time, you can prevent unnecessary repairs by jacking up your car with jack stands. In addition, you should fill up the tank. Don’t use your parking brake and be sure that it’s dry wherever you decide to store your car.
As you know from the tips in this article, there are things you can do empower yourself when it comes to keeping your car in good running condition. Just because you are not a mechanic yourself does not mean that you must be vulnerable to potential fraud. Speak your mind, be proactive and then trust your automobile to the hands that you choose.