Many people dread visits to the mechanic. But putting it off could risk your safety and cost more in the long run. Schedule your service today, and use these tips to make the most of your visit.
Find a Reliable Mechanic
Look for positive reviews, and check that your options are certified by an automotive repair organization such as the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).
Prepare for Your Visit
Clean out your car and be ready to provide a detailed explanation of the issue. Also bring a copy of your warranty, if applicable, and your vehicle’s service history.
Unscrupulous shops may trick you into higher payments or unnecessary repairs. Tactics include ignoring maintenance schedules, completing repairs without your permission and insisting your car needs more work than you came in for. Protect yourself:
• Know your service schedule. Have a basic understanding of the manufacturer’s suggested timeline. Read your owner’s manual and reference general recommended service schedules.
• Ask questions. See if your shop offers a warranty on parts and labor, and talk to the mechanic if you’re confused about a repair.
• Get a written estimate. This should detail the repairs and parts needed, as well as the expected charges. You should have to sign this before work begins on your vehicle, and the shop should need approval to complete repairs not on the estimate. Be sure to get a signed copy.
• Never leave without a repair order. This should list the work done, the parts used, the cost of the services involved and the odometer reading before and after service. Keep this for your service record. W prepare for your auto repair