Since you use your car to travel, it’s more than likely important to you. You might not know enough about cars to feel comfortable servicing small repairs. If this is true, then you have found a great article on how you can do some simple car maintenance.
Understand your manual and mark important pages. When you need to go to an auto repair shop, the professionals you are dealing with will want to know certain information regarding your car. You might even find some easy solutions for the issues you have been encountering.
Keep on hand all of your car’s documentation. One good place to keep them is in a folder in the trunk right above your spare tire. The auto shop will definitely want to see any records. They aid in speeding up the diagnosing process.
OEM parts should be asked for. These are the manufacturer’s original parts. While generic parts may be cheaper, you’ll never know how good the quality is. Although you save money in the short term with generic parts, its not really a deal if they have to be replaced again in a few years.
Look for the warning signs that your mechanic is not as competent as you might hope. If they give you the runaround or ignore any questions, you may not want them. You need to be able to trust the person doing your repairs, so don’t be afraid to choose another one.
Get a second opinion on all major repairs. Although most auto shops are reliable, you don’t want to pay too much. Seek out good shops that that are reputable and familiar with your type of vehicle. Such shops have a greater chance of knowing how to fix your car.
Ask about labor rates and prices before giving the keys to a shop. There are many unscrupulous mechanics who are not upfront about their costs and policies. You need to understand how and why you are being billed for your car repairs. Some shops have estimated repair times that are established by specific manufacturers. Other shops may charge an inflated rate for a minor repair that should be done within a shorter period of time.
The warning lights on your dashboard have an important function. Refer to your car manual for explanations. They were put there for your assistance, so use them for that. Yes, there are sometimes false positives, but it is risky to ignore these warning lights. If you do so, a problem can get worse and become more costly to fix.
Don’t put off washing your vehicle during the winter time. While it may seem pointless, winter is the most damaging time for your car. Sand, salt, and other debris are going to be working hard towards making your vehicle start to rust. Wash your car thoroughly and dry it to keep ice from forming on it.
Even if you think your vehicle just has a minor issue, it pays to get it looked at just the same. Many people ignore smaller issues, and they eventually lead to much larger issues.
Warranties are extremely important when you take your car to get repaired, especially if you get expensive parts. Ask the mechanic about your warranty in regards to parts they’re ordering for your car. Have a version of this warranty printed up so you can keep it with your records.
Many corrupt shops will change out your tires and put in older ones. They do this to gain money from your lack of knowledge. Before visiting the shop, use chalk to mark your tires. If you don’t have the chalk on your tires still when you pick the car up, then you know things aren’t right.
Do not believe a mechanic who tells you it is necessary to get your engine flushed to maintain your car. It’s a costly process which is unnecessary unless you’re abusing your car.
If a mechanic claims that the car parts they provide will last forever, then do not buy them. This is often simply a sneaky way for unscrupulous parts dealers to get more money out of you. For instance, some vehicles come with a claim of “lifetime” transmission fluid. Although this type of fluid doesn’t require changing very often, it should still be changed about every 80,000 miles. Therefore, the lifetime claim is false.
Not many people invest the time in reading their car’s owner manual. You should read your manual all the way through at least once. Included in the owner’s manual is important information on things such as car maintenance or how to properly change your car’s tires.
It is common for folks to seek repairs for one issue, only to be told that their car has additional problems. Some shops use this tactic to try and get you to spend more money. Walk away and find a mechanic who doesn’t play such games.
You should always care for your car. Taking the time to learn how to do easy fixes can save quite a few dollars in the long run. Use what you have learned here the next time you find your car behaving strangely.