At some point, it happens to all of us. Your most valuable and needed asset, your car, needs a car repair job. If you don’t have a go-to car repair guy on speed dial, you may go into a panic. How do you start? Where do you find a trusted mechanic when you’re not in a position to shop around? A good place to start is by getting referrals from friends or family members who have a car similar to yours. With so many makes and models of cars on the market today, it can be hard to find a mechanic that knows American cars as well as foreign-made models, so it helps to get a referral to a mechanic who you know works on your type of car. Even if you’re in a time crunch don’t skimp on doing some basic checking. Call the Better Business Bureau or check their website online and make sure the mechanic shop you’re interested in, doesn’t have a laundry list of complaints against them. Ask if the car repair shop is accredited. If you are searching for more information on motorhome repairs, take a look at earlier mentioned website.
This association can often offer the member a discount at certain hotels, or auto repair shops. If you’re a member, it never hurts to ask if the shop gives discounts for your membership. And of course, you want to make sure your mechanic is as skilled and up to date on their training as possible to ask if the mechanic is certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Before you have any car repair work done to ask what their warranty policy is. You should have a warranty on parts as well as a separate warranty on workmanship. A six-month warranty is unbeatable, a 90-day warranty is great, and a 30-day warranty on workmanship is suspect. Make sure any warranty on parts and workmanship comes in writing so you can bring it back if you have a problem, with no questions asked. And get any estimates in writing and make sure your mechanic understands if you want to be called if the work will go over that estimated price.
If you’re on a tight budget with very little room for wiggle, you need to be upfront with the mechanic and let them know you can’t go above the estimate. One of the worst scams a car repair shop can pull is charging you far over the estimate or performing another job without first getting the approval from you. This is illegal and unacceptable. All car repair shops should contact you the moment they believe the job will cost more or if they think there is another problem that needs to be addressed. Ask for the price of parts up front as well. There is a good chance you can shop around and find a better deal than what is on offer. Finally check the shops hours and make sure you can get your car back when it’s ready for pickup. If you’re at work until five o’clock and they close at five, you may be hard-pressed to get to your car in time. You should also ask if you can get a loaner while they have your car and check your insurance policy to see if a loaner is covered for car repair.