Because so few of today’s car owners do their own maintenance, many of us often choose to let local repair shops handle our repairs and upkeep for us. Here are some simple steps to help you pick the right mechanic or auto maintenance facility:
- Don’t wait unti your car breaks down to find a mechanic or repair facility. Being without your automobile during such times can cause tremendous stress, and often, consumers will make the wrong decision because of those pressures.
- Word of mouth is gold, so be sure to talk to family members, friends and even co-workers for shops or facilities they’d recommend.
- Call the Better Business Bureau and local consumer organizations to check the shop’s reliability and performance and to see if any complaints have been filed.
- Make sure the shop is clean, organized and runs like a well-oiled machine. You’ll also want to ensure they’re equipped with state-of-the-art equipment and tools to deal with modern cars and their computer-controlled engines. Being able to diagnose a problem from the first go will save you money, and prevent you from paying for repairs you don’t need.
- Make certain the facility you choose has a customer satisfaction policy and/or guarantee. Any estimates should be provided in writing, with itemized lists of parts and repairs to be made. The shop should stand behind their work by guaranteeing their repairs.
- When you’ve selected a shop or mechanic who fits the bill, make sure to begin with simple service tasks, such as oil and lube jobs, tire service and the like. This will give you an opportunity to test their integrity, competence levels and if they’re really the one you want to trust your car to on major repairs. When you find a good shop and mechanic, stick with them.