During warm weather months, many of us will spend a good amount of time behind the wheel as we all go on vacations, weekend trips, and travel around.
A good question to ask yourself is: do you have a trusted, experienced auto mechanic who will make sure that your vehicle is ready to handle the heat and will charge you a fair price for his services? In the end, no one wants to be overcharged for vehicle maintenance.
Consider these following tips when searching for a fantastic auto technician.
Do Not Wait For Your Car to Break Down
Do not get stuck looking for a mechanic when your car is on the back of a tow truck or flatbed. If you have not already selected who will be working on your vehicle, you are at the mercy of someone else.
For instance, your tow-truck driver may pressure you to use his favorite shop, which is probably because there is an arrangement between those two businesses — without any assurance for the quality you are looking for.
Start by Looking for Recommendations & Reviews
Ask your relatives, friends, or neighbors to recommend an auto repair mechanic. If you know someone who owns the same type of vehicle, that is even better.
Look for Certifications & Memberships
Today’s vehicles are essentially computers on wheels, which is why you do not want to just trust any backyard mechanic or hobbyist with repairing your car. Even when you engage with a professional auto technician, you should check to see what certifications or memberships that person has.
One key certification is that of the nonprofit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, more commonly referred to as ASE. It is awarded to mechanics and technicians, rather than the auto shops themselves.
In order to qualify for an ASE certification, mechanics are required to pass a test and have two years of on-the-job training, or one year of training a two-year degree in automotive repair. You have to also retest every five years in order to maintain the certification.
Having all this background does not necessarily guarantee that the mechanic will be honest, but it does show that they are likely competent and know what they are doing.
Do Not Just Shop by Price
You need to understand that you are not just paying for labor and parts when you get your vehicle repaired. You are also paying for the professionalism and technical expertise of the mechanic.
More expensive does not necessarily mean better outcomes. On the other hand, a bargain that seems too good to be true may be just that.
Weigh the Price of Small Shops & Big Dealerships
Vehicle repairs that are done at dealerships are usually more expensive, although some try their best to offer competitive rates.
However, if your vehicle is still under warranty for parts and labor, you will likely want to go to the dealership or follow what is laid out in your warranty when getting your vehicle repaired.
Ask Relevant Questions
You want your technician to be able to clearly explain what is exactly wrong with your car. Even if you do not know your engine from your transmission, asking questions shows that you are not going to take everything that is said at face value.
If the technician starts to get an attitude or refuses to answer your questions in easy to understand terms, you should consider going to the next auto shop for your repair.
Make Sure that the Shop Has the Latest Tools & Equipment
As we have discussed previously, the latest models of cars are nearly entirely composed of advanced computer components.
If the technician claims that he has the latest diagnostic equipment or the latest tools for your car, you should ask to see them and have them even explain how they work. Is there an attitude problem? You should consider driving on to the next shop.
Ask for a Warranty
Warranties for car repairs can vary tremendously, so you should ask about warranties ahead of time. Make sure that you properly understand everything that is covered — and make sure you get it in writing. According to the Federal Trade Commission, there is no “standard warranty” on repairs.
Warranties may also be subject to certain limitations, such as time and mileage.
Talk with the Mechanic or Technician
You could ask a new mechanic to do a routine maintenance task for you, like changing your car’s oil, to see if you are satisfied with the quality of the workmanship, their professionalism, and the price of the service.
Always Get a Second Opinion
If you believe you have found the mechanic that is right for you, but it still does not feel exactly right. You may not know if the price is exactly right. So, it is only natural to want a second opinion.
If you know someone who understands vehicles, that is fantastic. If you do not, you should take it to the next shop on your list. It may cost you ab it more, but in the end, it is worth getting the best service possible.
Do Not Cave In to Pressure
It is important that you avoid being pressured into making a hasty decision. That is why it is crucial to choose a mechanic or repair shop before you have any major issues with your vehicle.
If you go to a mechanic and are presented with a list of unexpected repairs that they want to do, you should not feel obligated to say yes. Always go for a second opinion.
Auto Repair Shops in San Diego
Automobile Repair Shop San Diego is a family-owned and operated business that has been providing the best repair experience. We will offer you a hassle-free auto repair starting with a precise damage assessment or estimate. We will tow your vehicle for FREE to our shop, organize for a rental car, and work directly with the insurance company to streamline the repair process. We will even pay up to $500 of your deductible. Contact us today to see how we can help.