Whenever you experience car problems, it is important that you take the necessary steps to fix them. Being stranded without a functioning car can make your life very difficult. However, it’s not usually necessary to pay a bunch of money when you need repairs. You can attend to a lot of basic repairs yourself.
Verify that any prospective mechanic has earned an A.S.E. certification. This certification lets you know that your mechanic has at least 2 years of experience and has passed a test. This is a good way of finding a qualified mechanic who will care about doing a good job so they can keep their certification.
It is a good idea to use referrals to find a decent mechanic. Talk to your friends and family and ask if they have any recommendations. These people will be able to provide you with the price, quality, and overall satisfaction of the mechanic. You’ll get a real feel for the experience and the honesty of the mechanic.
Find a technician knowledgeable in your kind of car. While all cars have the same basic components, there are big differences as to how they are attached and located under the hood. If you don’t think he has, go to the dealer.
Keep a spare tire and jack in your trunk. Modern cars come equipped with them already. You would hate to be stuck out in the road and be forced to spend money on a tow. You can save a lot by doing it yourself.
Assemble repair tools and keep them in your car, so you are prepared at all times. You should definitely have the tools necessary to change a tire, if you need to. If you’re missing a lug wrench and jack, then you need to buy one. Also, it is wise to have screwdrivers, a ratchet set, Phillips head screwdrivers and wrenches. You don’t want to settle for buying cheap tools. Buy quality ones that you are sure won’t fail when you really need them.
The labor rate should be posted in your repair shop. If it is not, ask. Also ask the price of a repair, including parts. Not all shops will be upfront about their prices, so ask anyone available for this information. Also find out how you are to be billed. Many car dealerships may charge by “book time” which is a set rate based on how long the repair should take to do. Some minor repairs could even be an all day job.
Look on your dashboard for any hazard lights that go on. They are there for a warning so it is to your benefit to be aware of what they are warning you about. Ignoring them for extended periods of time will only make the problem much worse than it already is.
Consider taking pictures of all areas of your vehicle before you bring it in to be repaired at an auto body shop. Sometimes shady mechanics supplement their income by stripping a car of its more expensive parts. Be safe rather than sorry.
Educate yourself on the basics of car repairs and warranties before going to the mechanic. There are new parts, refurbished parts, and salvaged parts. New parts are made solely to a manufacturer’s specifications. Used parts that have been made good as new are classified as reconditioned. They may also carry a tag as “rebuilt,” or even “re-manufactured.” However, salvage is simply another word for a used part.
Check if the mechanic is certified. These certifications can make you feel comfortable when you are getting your repair. When they have this, you know they are trained properly and are going to give you good results.
Bleed your brakes after there has been work on them. Make sure it is done before you take it on a test drive. After bleeding your breaks, make sure that you pump your brake fluid. Make sure there are no leaks causing you to lose valuable brake fluid. You can then test drive your vehicle on an empty road. Begin slowly and gradually pick up speed to determine if the issue is fixed.
To feel safe on the road when your car breaks down, look into signing up for AAA. AAA can be very useful when you need a tow, or are looking for a deal with an auto repair service shop. You’ll often find that AAA has great discounts that reduce any out of pocket costs.
If an auto body shop does good work for you, then you need to return there every time. When you have a good mechanic relationship, your repairs will be done properly. Because you are a repeat customer, you might get some kind of discount.
When you are getting a quote for repairs from an auto mechanic, be sure to have him itemize the parts and labor costs. This will make things easier when you need to compare their quote with another one. The component costs should be very similar; therefore, the costs you will really be looking at are the service costs.
You need to take some time to learn all about your car. Simple car maintenance tasks are easy to learn and can save you money. You can cut costs considerably by changing oil or fixing a flat tire yourself.
The first hurdle you have to get over when your car needs repairs is the mechanic. You do not want to work with a mechanic who seems shady. Be wary of mechanics that won’t answer your questions or make direct eye contact with you. These are signs that they are hiding something.
It should now be apparent to you that you don’t necessarily have to spend a fortune to have your car repaired. If you take care of the problem yourself, you can save a lot of money. Use what you have learned here to get your vehicle back on the highway again.