When a car breaks down, the owner sometimes is petrified of having to repair it. When you know what you’re up against, you’ll be more confident. Review these tips in order to get the best repairs for your car to run smoothly.
Keep a good battery charger on hand at all times. Dead batteries are pretty common and you can help others if you own a battery charger. Learn how to find the points where the battery charger connects.
Check your coolant levels frequently. Allow your car to run for a bit and then turn it off and pop open the hood. Don’t open your radiator if your car is running. Check how much fluid is in the radiator with a dipstick and keep in mind that you should always mix coolant with water before pouring it in your radiator.
Know what your costs will be before handing your keys over to the mechanic. Ask any questions you have about the service before they start work on the car. You don’t want to be surprised with a higher charge than you were expecting.
Tag the important pages in your vehicle manual. When you show up to a mechanic’s shop, you are going to have to explain some information about your car. By knowing the manual, you may actually find you can fix some issues yourself.
Remember that getting OEM parts is important. These parts come from the manufacturer of your car. While generic parts may be cheaper, you’ll never know how good the quality is. It might be a great deal, but if you have to continue to replace the part, it is not going to be a good deal in the long run.
Before having repairs, see if you can diagnose the problem. Knowing what your car needs can help you avoid being talked into repairs it doesn’t need. As you’ve probably heard, there are some mechanics that like to lie about issues to make some more money.
You should always keep a jack and a spare tire with you at all times. If you purchase a new car, you should have these in your trunk. If you get stuck in an unknown area, these items are crucial to have. It’s far more convenient and less costly to take care of it yourself.
Ask about labor rates and prices before giving the keys to a shop. Sometimes it’s easy to spot the rates on the wall, but read them carefully. Know where the estimated prices come from. Some stores are able to give you an estimate for how long they’ll keep your car. Some minor repairs could even be an all day job.
Be sure that you make a note of your oil change schedule. Oil has to be changed often for a car to perform properly. If you don’t get an oil change then your vehicle’s life could be shorter so you have to be sure to remind yourself.
Don’t put off washing your vehicle during the winter time. Winter can be hard on your vehicle. Salt and sand from frozen streets can cause rust spots and other flaws. Prevent ice from forming on your car: dry it thoroughly after washing.
Keep in mind that you don’t need the dealer for auto repairs. Good mechanics can be found elsewhere, not only at the dealer’s shop. If you are more comfortable with one of them, by all means use them.
Some shops steal your tires and use old tires to replace them! They make money from the premise that you won’t notice. Therefore, always put a little chalk on them so you can identify your tires. If you find the chalk is missing later on, question the shop about what happened.
Often people will take a vehicle in for service, only to find out when they pick it up that there are more problems. The purpose is to strike a bargain and convince you that you have gotten a good deal. Tell the mechanic that you will need to think about it, then shop around for a better price.
There’s no reason why simple maintenance, such as topping off engine oil or adding windshield wiper fluid, can’t be done on your own. It’s a falsehood that only mechanics are qualified to perform routine maintenance. Learn about the process and then dive in!
Let your mechanic know that you do not want to spend more than a certain amount on unauthorized repairs. You should never tell your mechanic to go ahead and fix everything that needs some attention. Give them a dollar amount and if they find something else wrong with your vehicle you should have them call you before fixing it.
Never get any work done if the mechanic is giving you a hard time about providing a written estimate. If the work is shoddy, it will be hard for you to recover damages if you have no written contract.
Dealing with car trouble can be very frustrating, especially if you do not have a good mechanic to help you. However, if you are armed with the right information, you’re car will be back on the road in no time. Keep this information handy so that you will have it when you need it.
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