The handing over of your car to a mechanic is not a decision you take lightly. You need a car for your daily life, and without it, you feel a little less like yourself. When you trust a mechanic with one of your most precious possessions, it’s important that you feel confident that he’s in good hands. If your mechanic or repair shop can’t answer those five important questions, run (or maybe roll) away and don’t look back. This handy checklist will help ensure that you get the repair experience that you and your car deserve.
1. What are my repair options and can you explain each?
Most issues in the car have more than one solution. However, some mechanics may take you to the most expensive one by not fully explaining your other choices. Ask about all possible routes, and make sure your mechanic explains each one thoroughly. Not every driver is a car expert, and that’s all right! Don’t feel embarrassed to ask a lot of questions. It’s your mechanic ‘s job to help you understand the ins and outs of your car and help you make the most informed decision.
2. What certifications do you have?
Reputable technicians will be certified by the National Automotive Service Excellence Institute (ASE). ASE-certified technicians have shown proof of their expertise and experience in their field and are regularly re-tested to ensure that they are at the top of the ever-changing technology of the industry. Currently there are about 213,094 ASE-certified automotive technicians across the country, with Firestone Complete Auto Care employing more ASE-certified technicians than anyone else in the industry.
3. What kind of warranties do you offer?
Shops offer certain guarantees on the products and services they provide, but warranties vary greatly from shop to shop. Ask them about warranty options before the car repair shop starts working on your car. Shops that have confidence in their mechanics and the services they perform will provide guarantees.
4. Can I see my old parts?
If your mechanic replaces a part of your car, ask them to return your old parts to the new part box. Not only is this educational for you, as you will be able to see before and after, but it also helps to ensure that the part has been replaced. Even if you can’t take the old part with you because it’s too heavy, leaky, or messy, you can still ask to see it. Knowledge is power, as the saying goes. If your mechanic refuses, think twice before you let them touch your vehicle.
5. Can you provide me with a maintenance plan?
Great mechanics not only want to get your car back in excellent condition, they want to help you keep your car in excellent condition. Ask your mechanic for a maintenance schedule and compare it to the manufacturer ‘s recommendation in the owner’s manual. Go along with the manufacturer’s recommendations and say goodbye to a mechanic who’s trying to sell you services you don’t need.
6. How much do you think the repair will cost?
Getting a written estimate for a repair in advance will give you a general sense of what it’s going to cost. You may also require the mechanic to contact you and obtain your approval if the cost of repair exceeds the estimate by a pre-specified amount.
7. How long is the repair work going to take?
The time it takes to repair a vehicle can vary widely depending on the nature of the work being done so it can help to do research ahead of time.
By Jon ‘ShakataGaNai’ Davis, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3177569
Are You Looking for an Auto Repair Shop you Can Trust?
If you’re considering making a change to an auto repair mechanic trusted by thousands of happy customers, look no further than autoTECH Blackhawk. Why? We differ from other independent automotive repair stops because we are a relationship shop. This means that the more of your car repair needs we support you with, the better able we are to customize our recommendations based on your driving habits and needs. Whether you want to keep the daily driver in ‘good enough’ condition, style your new car so that it’s customized just for you, maintain your favorite car in ‘like new’ condition, or even train your whole family to be more knowledgeable about cars – we partner with you to ensure that your cars meet your needs. We also offer an industry-leading 3-Year/36,000 mile warranty, so we only use Original Equipment and manufacturer recommended products. Contact us now to book your no-contact, friendly appointment!