No matter what kind of vehicle you drive, a sports car, family sedan, pick-up truck, or mini-van, when you go in for repairs or service, you want to make sure the job is done right. The following advice should take much of the guesswork out of finding a quality auto repair establishment in San Diego.
Don’t just drop your car off at the nearest auto shop and hope for the best, That’s not choosing a shop — that’s just a gamble.
Before you consider where you should take your car for maintenance and repair, you need to understand the differences between the two. Regular maintenance items are those listed in your car’s owner’s manual included in your vehicle’s service schedule. They are mean to keep your car in optimal operating condition. Repairs are services that are performed in order to fix an issue. Where you should ultimately take your car depends on what you need to be done to your car.
Regular Vehicle Maintenance
Regularly scheduled maintenance can be performed at any car dealership. You don’t necessarily have to go to where you bought your car. Also, you can usually take your car to an independent auto repair shop or franchise, which is usually much less expensive than dealerships. Under federal law, you are provided the right to service your car wherever you want without impacting your warranty coverage. Depending on the contract, owners may be required to have all services performed at a dealership. Mechanics at your dealership’s service department are specifically trained and certified in all aspects of your vehicle’s service needs, and your auto repair shop will be equipped with all the required diagnostic equipment. Due to the fact that maintenance items are fairly basic, though, any professional auto repair shop in San Diego should be able to perform the tasks required to maintain your car.
When you take your car to Auto Repair Shop San Diego, make sure that you have access to the manufacturer’s latest technical service bulletins (TSBs), which are essentially instructions on how to repair common issues with a particular vehicle model. Usually, a car manufacturer will do TSB repairs for free, but you will have to go to a dealership to have the work done.
Repairs on a car have a tremendous range, from basic tasks, like a brake job or auto-body repair, to complex services, like overhauling a transmission or diagnosing an electronics-system issue. Go to a dealership if your car is covered by the original warranty and have the manufacturer pay for the repair. You should also use a dealership if your vehicle has been recalled or is the subject of a “service campaign” in which the vehicle manufacturer offers to correct the defect. If you have an extended warranty, you will need to check the terms to see who has to perform covered repairs.
If the warranty on your vehicle has lapsed, the type of issue could determine when you take it into a shop for repair. A distinguished, independent auto repair shop should be able to take on the majority of common repairs. Shops that specialize in your car’s make are more likely to have the right training to provide the service you need, equipment, and up-to-date information on your car. A skilled mechanic will let you know when an issue requires a trip to the dealership or a specialty shop.
If you are experiencing issues with a system that’s exclusive to your model or vehicle manufacturer, particularly electronics, like navigation or multi-function control system, consider taking your car to a dealership. You may need to take it to a dealership to have safety recall work done.
How to Find a Qualified Mechanic to Work on Your Vehicle
Based on yearly surveys, consumers are found to usually have greater levels of satisfaction when working with independent auto body shops over car dealerships.
However, finding a mechanic who you can trust to repair your vehicle takes a lot more than just browsing the internet. You have to do so some good old-fashioned detective work to find the auto repair shop that’s right for you. There is no single clue to what makes a good repair shop, but here are some things you should look out for during your search:
- Find a shop for your brand of vehicle. Many shops will specialize in working on certain types of cars. Those that focus on your type will more likely have the latest training and equipment to fix your car.
- Ask your family and friends. Seek recommendations from family members who own a vehicle similar to yours.
- Check for certification. Your technician and repair shop should be certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).
- Tryout the repair shop. Before your vehicle needs serious repair, you may want to try out the shop with a smaller repair or maintenance item, like oil and filter changes.
- Ask about warranties. What kind of guarantees does the shop provide for repair work? Warranties can vary significantly between shops, so be sure to ask about them ahead of time. Use a common repair, such as brake work, to check.
- Make sure the shop is convenient. Even the most qualified auto repair shop may not be worth it if its hours of operation conflict with your schedule or you have few transportation options after you drop off your vehicle.
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 hassle-free auto repairs 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.