Steps For a Better Automotive Experience
If you are like most people, you endeavor to make your automotive repair experience less stressful. Here are a few tips to make that happen.
Find a mechanic you can trust.
All the advertising in the world will not help you find the auto repair shop that is right for you. Word of mouth is probably your best indicator. Find friends and associates in your area who seem to be less stressed about their vehicles than most people. Value the opinions of those with comparable incomes to you over those making more or less than you. You may try more than one mechanic before you find the right one, but try to start with simple services such as oil changes rather than large jobs like engine rebuilding.
Build a great relationship with your mechanic.
Once you find a mechanic/shop you trust, work hard to build a solid relationship. Try to call ahead and make appointments for services. Always pay when the bill is due. If you are unable to spend over a certain amount, tell your mechanic up front so he can work a payment plan with you if necessary or find a cheaper repair alternative if possible. Let the shop know of upcoming trips, as well. This clues the shop in to checking for future problems.
Keep a reserve of money for car repairs.
Paying your mechanic bills on time will go a long way toward building a great working relationship. You should always endeavor to keep a stash of money available at all times for vehicle repairs.
Understand that repairing a vehicle isn’t always an exact science.
There isn’t a perfect explanation for most things that go wrong on a vehicle. When new, an automobile costs tens of thousands of dollars. The parts to that car are many, expensive, and go wrong in a variety of different ways. A good mechanic will do his or her best to find the problem with minimal effort and cost to the customer, but some repairs may only fix part of the problem. Only raise a red flag if your mechanic has been untrustworthy in the past or continues to make repairs in the future that never seem to fix the problem. A good mechanic will tell you when the effort to fix a car is more expensive than finding a new one.
Ask your mechanic for advice when buying a new/used car.
If you are in the market for a new or used car, be willing to spend between $50 and $75 to have it looked over. It is up to you to only bring vehicles in you are genuinely interested in. Do not expect your mechanic to look over a vehicle for you for free. A good mechanic will do work for dealerships in the area, too, and will know which ones put the most money and effort into repairing their inventory.