Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Tire Maintenance To Save You Money

Maintaining your tires can help you save a lot of money. Tire maintenance includes regular practices such as alignment, rotation and inspection. The tires carry the entire weight of your vehicle and without them; your car would not be able to move, so why not invest in quality tire maintenance?

What can tire maintenance do for you?
Just like any other part of your vehicle, your tires get old and worn out depending on how you take care of them. Taking good care of your tires can extend their lifespan and you would not have to buy new tires as often. Doing things as simple as checking the pressure to ensure that they are properly inflated can make a huge difference. The lifespan of tires that are consistently under inflated by 20% reduces by 20%. Instead of your tires taking you the recommended 60, 000 miles, they will only handle 48,000 miles and that makes a colossal difference. This is because underinflated tires do not wear evenly, and before you know it, you will not be able to drive your vehicle safely. Rotating your tires regularly also makes sure the wear is evenly distributed and this makes them last longer.
Proper tire maintenance also saves you fuel. If you are using excess fuel and cannot find any explanation from your engine or driving habits, you should check if your tires are properly inflated because under inflated tires are one of the most common reasons for using excess fuel. This is because there is a higher rolling resistance and your engine has to apply more effort to move the vehicle.

Your own personal safety and that of the vehicle occupants are also a reason why tire maintenance is important. You rely on the brakes and tires to grip the road and bring the car to a stop in emergency situations. They should be in ideal working conditions at all times for your safety.

Tire maintenance tips
·         Always inspect your tires regularly. If you do not have a lot of driving experience, it is quite difficult to notice when one of your tires has a problem. Take the initiative to inspect your tires at least once or twice a week before you roll out of the driveway. You should also have your tires professionally inspected every year.

·         Check your pressure at the gas station since it affects the vehicle handling and braking, especially during rainy weather. You should always check the tire pressure before a long trip.
·         All tires have a recommended load capacity and you should keep this in mind when buying tires or loading your vehicle. You should avoid loading the tires beyond the recommended load capacity as a matter of safety first. Sudden tire destruction may be caused by the excess heat that builds up when driving with overloaded tires.

If you notice any damage to the tire or wheel, replace it with your spare tire before getting it checked by a professional. This can help you avoid further damage and accidents as well.

Posted By: Crawfordville Automotive  http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Common Auto Repair Mistakes to Avoid

If you are planning on doing any auto repairs on your own probably because you want to save money or that you consider yourself a handy person, there are a couple of things you should beware of to avoid common mistakes. DIY repairs have their own fair of challenges. You’re less likely to do the job as meticulously as a professional would but sometimes it’s worth a try.

But in the interest of saving you a couple of dollars, let’s look at some common things to avoid when performing auto repairs on your own.

1.     Failing to know what you can and cannot do
Here’s the thing, not all auto repairs can be converted to DIY projects. There are some repairs that must be handled by a professional because not only are they potentially dangerous but also do require a high level of skill and experience to be done right. For instance, replacing your windshield, swapping a transmission or changing your brake pads are tasks you would want to leave to a professional. It’s not worth risking potential injury and spending your time and money only to require the services of a professional later on.

2.     Failing to read expert advice and information on auto repairs
There are countless resources online that provide information on auto repairs that can be done at home. You need to start reading this information and make sure you are well versed with the repair jobs you can handle. Start with the easier projects for beginners and then work your way up as you understand more about your car and the way it works. Don’t just start working on the car blindly before you get any information on what you are supposed to do and why.

3.     Failing to label auto parts as you remove them
It’s easy to get confused after you remove parts from your vehicle and forget what goes where. To avoid this, make use of proper labelling as you are removing the parts. Write down all the areas that you are tampering with so that you can easily fix them back together when you’re done.

4.     Using the wrong type of oil on your engine
The type of oil you use on your engine can really affect your vehicle’s performance. Consider the weight and type of oil recommended by the manufacturer and strictly follow the guidelines given. Using the wrong oil may not cause the engine to fail instantly but it deteriorates over time and causes your car to be inefficient. Most importantly, don’t forget the necessary oil changes that are required to keep your car’s engine running efficiently.

5.     Failing to do the basics

Some car owners will go straight into the tough stuff and forget certain important basics such as rotating the tires and checking oil pressure. You can save yourself a lot of money if you ensure that your oil changes are done within the required schedule and that the brake pads are replaced on a regular basis to avoid the screeching sound.  

Posted By: Crawfordville Automotive http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Friday, October 16, 2015

How Much Should I Pay For a Rebuilt Transmission?

If your car's transmission is giving you trouble, the first thought that might cross your mind is how much that trouble's going to cost you. After all, transmissions aren't cheap - so how can you be sure that you're getting the best estimate possible?
Wondering how much you should pay for a rebuilt transmissions? Take a look at these tips on getting the best estimate; they'll ensure that you walk away with a newly functioning transmission without spending an arm and a leg.
Be as Descriptive as Possible. The more you can tell your mechanic about what's wrong with your car, the more likely it is that he or she will be able to diagnose the problem right away. You don't even have to be a car expert to describe what's wrong with your transmission. Tell your transmission repair expert about any sounds and sensations that you've been experiencing.
You may feel like you're not making much sense, but trust us - your transmission repair expert can make sense out of what you're saying!
Request a Diagnostic. If your mechanic isn't able to diagnose the problem the first time around, he or she may request a diagnostic test. This may sound expensive and time-consuming, but it's actually extremely simple. The diagnostic test is a fast process that gives the mechanic a concrete idea of what's wrong with your transmission. This is usually delivered in the form of an error code, which the mechanic then uses to pinpoint the specific problem.
Your diagnostic test should be free - and if it's not, take your car to another transmission repair expert, pronto.
Be Understanding. There may be times where the diagnostic test doesn't give your mechanic an accurate idea of what's going on with your car. If that's the case, your mechanic will need to actually remove the transmission from your car to get an accurate idea about pricing.
If this happens, don't assume that the transmission repair expert is trying to rip you off. In fact, this is often a sign that your mechanic is trying to give you the most fair and accurate price as possible. Should the mechanic need to remove the transmission, expect between $500 to $1000. This should determine the exact problem with your vehicle.
What's the Final Cost? Transmissions are not cheap; therefore, it's in your best interest to expect to pay $1000+ when your transmission needs to be repaired or rebuilt. Most transmission repairs average between $1400 to $1800 considering the year, make and model of your vehicle. Economy cars and older vehicles will tend to be less expensive while SUVs and luxury cars will usually cost much more.
However, now that you know how much a transmission repair should actually cost, you'll be in a better place to ensure that you're not getting ripped off. Make sure your mechanic walks you through every step of the process, as this can help you get a better understanding of why these costs can be so high.
Use these tips to get the best estimate for your rebuilt transmission!

Posted By: Crawfordville Automotive http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Sunday, September 20, 2015

All you need to Know about Wheel and Tire Safety

Your entire car performance depends on how well the four wheels handle the road. Many people often focus on engine maintenance and forget all about the wheels that the car rides on. Wheel and tire performance is very important for your safety when driving. The following are some important factors to keep in mind:

Check your tire pressure
Depending on how often you drive your car, you may need to check your tire pressure at least once a week. Getting the right tire pressure prolongs the lifespan of the tires, enhances safety and makes your vehicle more economical in fuel usage.  Your tire lifespan may reduce by up to 75% even when you are operating at 80% tire pressure.

You can tell there is a pressure problem when the tires start wearing out faster on the outer edges. Tire blowouts often occur when the tire is under inflated since there is not enough air to hold up the weight of the vehicle. The sidewalls of the tires end up getting flexing beyond their limit and blow out. If you are driving at a high speed, you could easily cause a bad accident. Make sure you inflate the tires according to the tire rating.

Replace your tires
Replacing all four tires may be costly but it is not expensive as what you may lose in case of an accident. Bald tires should be used on racetracks only. When your tire treads are worn out and you cannot retread them, you need to replace them. The treads enable the tires to grip on to the road surface, which is necessary for breaking and making turns. Worn out tires are also illegal and you can get a fine for riding on tires with a low tread depth. You can buy a tread wear indicator and check the tread depth yourself. Make sure to check all the tires in every main grove and at least two different points along the grove.

Use the right tire for the right weather
You cannot use the same tires for summer during winter. Tires come with a variety of ratings. There are some which are all weather and there are specially designed winter rated tires. If you experience heavy winters in your areas with a lot of snow, you should get rated tires for your own safety.

Clean your wheels

You need to clean the wheels when you are washing the car. Avoid washing car wheels when they are still hot as this could cause rapid contraction and weaken the wheel. A lot of mud, grime and dirt often end up covering the wheel and this could affect the way the breaks work. Get some mild soap and water to loosen the grime and dirt and wash off the wheel when it is cool. You can wax or polish the wheel after washing for the finishing. Make sure you get the right rims for your tire so you do not damage the edges of the tire.

Posted By: Crawfordville Auto http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Benefits Of Having Regular Automotive Repair

Very few car owners actually go through the auto manual which comes with new cars. As time goes by, automotive repairs of your vehicle become very important. This is due to the fact that with regular use the different parts of a vehicle do not perform like they used to when they were in newer condition. Most US residents, including those living in cities like Tyler and Athens face high repair bills just because they did not service their vehicle in time.
Getting your car serviced every now and then has its benefits. Some of these are:
1. Less chance of high repair bills: If you notice that your car tires have become worn out or the car fluids are continuously leaking out or you regularly overlook the dashboard warning lights and still you neglect taking the vehicle to a mechanic, you may incur heavy repair bills when you finally decide to get your precious vehicle repaired. Better would be to do a regular check up of your car to avoid such heavy costs on automotive repairs at one go. It has been noticed that several US citizens, including those residing in cities like Tyler and Henderson have their precious cars checked on a regular basis.
2. More dependable vehicle: Nobody would like the idea of getting stranded in the middle of the road. Regular maintenance of your car, like different fluid checks or oil change will ensure that your car serves you for a longer life span.
3. Better re-sell value: A person who has his car well maintained will have a better chance of getting a good re-sell value for his car when he decides to trade it in. Nobody would like the idea of purchasing a used car for which the new owner has to pay a fortune to get it in a better working condition.

4. Environment friendly vehicle: Timely maintenance of your vehicle will ensure that it passes all emission tests. This will prove that your car is in perfect running condition. A car which does not blow out smoke and does not make any sort of sound while it is running would add to make this planet a lovely place to live in.
Posted By:Crawfordville Auto Repair and Tire http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Monday, July 20, 2015

How to Cut Back on Your Auto Repair Costs

Auto repairs can be really expensive, especially when you consider the fact that auto repair emergencies happen unexpectedly and usually after you are done spending the paycheck. The good news is, there are certain things that you can do to ensure you do not spend a fortune at the auto repair shop.

Follow the manufacturer’s manual

When you buy a car, it comes with a manual from the manufacturer, recommending how and how often you need to get your car checked. Unfortunately, many people throw away this manual as soon as they get home, only to retrieve it once a problem arises. For the sake of your car and your pocket, pay heed to what the manufacturer has to say. After all, they know the car best. Get your car checked regularly, even when there is not an obvious problem. Sometimes an issue will fester below the surface, only to escalate into a full blown problem at the worst of times.

Handle your car gently

Do not be rough on your car, as this will only make it susceptible to damage. Pay attention to where you drive and park your car. If your car is not made for rough terrain, then do not drive it on such. Drive carefully and do not lend your car to reckless drivers. And finally, do not drive when drunk. This will only lead to accidents, which are costly and sometimes fatal. If you have to clean your auto glass, do it the right way. Do not use abrasives on your auto glass, this will damage them.

Get insurance

Protect yourself against the financial risks associated with car ownership by getting a car insurance policy. This way, you will have some of the costs of your auto repair covered. Footing all your auto repair bills from your pocket will have a detrimental effect on your finances. And remember to always ask the auto repair shop whether they work with your insurance provider. Otherwise, you might have an impossible time filing claims.

Choose a good auto repair shop

If you want to spend less on your auto repairs, choose a good auto repair shop. Such a shop will not only offer quality services (which will mean fewer trips to the mechanic) but they will also be transparent about their charges as well. You do not want a situation where you are asked to pay additional costs that you had not been told about.

Don’t wait till the last minute

Do not wait for that tiny chip on your windshield to grow into a full-blown crack. Address problems as they arise, so that you do not give them time to become really big problems.

Let the professionals handle it

Unless you are one hundred percent sure of what you are doing, do not attempt to fix auto repairs on your own. If you do this, you run the risk of tampering with your car and incurring huge costs at the auto repair shop.

Auto repairs need not be too expensive. With these simple steps, you will be headed towards cheaper auto repair bills.

Posted By: Dan Hinchee  http://crawfordvilleauto.com/

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

How to Avoid Expensive Auto Repairs

If you do not take good care of your car, you are very likely going to incur great costs when you head to the auto repair shop for repairs, replacement and other maintenance needs. Your car is an important part of your life, and you should strive to ensure that you do everything possible to keep it in good shape, and in doing so, avoid expensive auto repairs. Here is what you should do:

Follow the maintenance schedule as outlined in the owner’s manual.

The manufacturer of your car includes a maintenance schedule that is to direct you on how and when to touch up your car for maintenance purposes. This schedule is your best guide as it comes from someone who understands the car properly, and all its components and the needs of every one of them.

Fix problems soon enough

Pay attention to your car so that you can detect when something is amiss. And if at all you detect something wrong, get it checked out immediately. If you allow little problems to exist without getting fixed, they will escalate into something much bigger that will not only be expensive to fix but dangerous to your safety as well.

Change fluids, filters and spark plugs as recommended by the manufacturer

You might think you are saving some money by not changing these as recommended, but waiting longer than the time the manufacturer has stipulated only serves to damage your vehicle. So that in the long run you end up spending more money in getting your car repaired.

Inflate tires properly

Tires that contain too little air or too much of it are dangerous not just to your car, but your safety as well. This is because such tires are prone to excessive wear and tear which can result into a blow-out.

Synthetic oil

Consider upgrading your motor oil to a high-performance synthetic oil which will not only prevent certain problems associated with common motor oil, but improve your car’s performance as well.

Unusual noises

Unusual noises on your car might be an indication that something is wrong, and for this reason you should check the owner’s manual to ascertain what is usual and what is unusual. If the unusual noises persist, take your car to an auto repair shop where the repair professionals can check to see what is amiss.

Drive carefully

Avoid expensive auto repairs by driving your car carefully, so that you can minimize the chances of wrecking your vehicle, which would definitely necessitate extensive repairs. If someone borrows your car, make sure they are careful drivers and remind them to handle your vehicle well. This is especially important if you are lending your car to someone who has just started to drive.

Know what you can handle and what you cannot

If your car needs some repairs, do them only if you are sure you can adequately deal with them. Otherwise, let the auto repair shop deal with auto repair problems that are beyond your scope. Tinkering with your car when you are not sure about what needs to be done is only going to worsen the problem, and lead to expensive auto repairs.

Posted by: Crawfordville Auto & Repair http://crawfordvilleauto.com

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Traits of the Best Auto Repair Shops

Having a car that needs auto repair can be nerve wracking, especially when you do not know, which auto repair shop to take it to. The truth is, many car owners wait until they require auto services to start searching for a reputable service provider. But what exactly makes a good auto repair shop? These are some of the things you should look out for:

Excellent customer service

It all starts with that first contact you make when you call to inquire about the services offered and the charges of the same. If it sounds as if the person on the other hand is genuinely interested in helping you, then you can go ahead and visit the auto repair shop. The best auto repair shops understand that satisfying the customer is key, and that professionalism, respect and open communication are part of that process.

Mechanics who are not just competent but personable as well

Before a mechanic can work on your car, you need to make sure they are ASE Certified. ASE stands for Automotive Service Excellence standards. Depending on the kind of work you need done, you might require the automotive technicians to have additional certification.

On top of the technical know-how, it is crucial that a mechanic have the personality required to interact amiably with the clients bringing in their cars for auto repair. The mechanics interact with the car owners on a one-on-one basis and as such must know how to do so well.

Reputable guarantees and warranties

Competent auto repair shops guarantee their work and offer warranties for at least 12 months and 12,000 miles. This way, you can put your mind at ease knowing that you are getting professional services from a competent provider who is confident in the kind of services they offer.

Great hours/Flexibility

Auto emergencies happen when you least expect them. Good auto repair shops understand this, and this is why they offer flexible working hours that allow you to call in when that emergency happens on a Saturday. They are open on Saturdays, offer towing and service your car on the same day that you bring it in.

Some of the services offered by reliable companies include mechanical services, electronic ignition, alignment, automobile A/C repair, tune-ups, major and minor engine repair, factory scheduled maintenance, oil changes, coolant system service among others.

Membership in a Cooperative Marketing Association

Before an auto repair shop can belong to a network such as NARPRO, it must pass quality and integrity tests, and also receive high customer satisfaction ranking.

If you are looking for an auto repair shop that understands your needs and strives to meet them, then look out for one with great services and great prices so you can rest assured that you will get all the work you need done without emptying your wallet. Whether you want some maintenance work done, or your car just broke down and requires major repairs, you have the right auto repair shop for you.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

6 Excellent Tips to Ensure Your Car Runs in Top Notch Condition

Would like your car to operate smoothly? In this article, you’ll read excellent tips on how to achieve this on your own. Follow the suggestions keenly if you’d like the car to remain in top notch condition and not give you problems.

1. Engine oil

This is the lubricant that reduces friction between different engine parts. It aids in heat dispersion as well. The oil absorbs the heat generated by the engine combustion chambers and so it prevents overheating. Besides, oil prevents corrosion, rusting and damage of important engine components. Given the role played by oil in the functioning of the engine, you should regularly check its level. Do not forget to top it up using the correct grade of oil in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications. When topping up, don’t go beyond the recommended level.

2. Battery

Always ensure the battery is in pristine condition as it’s an essential component of your car’s electrical system. A faulty battery can cause breakdowns. Make the habit of frequently checking the battery terminals in order to ensure they’re tight and clean. If the battery hasn’t been replaced within the last 3-5 years, you should change it or it may fail without prior warning.

3. Tires

Tire care is imperative for vehicle safety. Well maintained tires will improve mileage, make the tires durable and enhance your vehicle’s safety when driving along the highways at higher speeds. Therefore, frequently check for tire inflation especially when driving long distances. Also, ensure the car has proper wheel alignment. Vibrations in the car’s steering may signal a problem with tire balancing.

4. Lights

Lights play an incredible role especially at night. They are important for your own safety and that of your vehicle. Check them frequently to ensure they work perfectly. Do not forget to check out other electrical parts such as window demisters and horns frequently to confirm they are working properly.

5. Brakes

You should be keen about keeping the car’s brakes in perfect condition because they are important for your safety. Be alert for unusual vibrations or squealing sounds when you apply brakes during driving. When such problems occur, quickly go to a service station to get those brakes checked. They may need replacement. Also ensure the car’s brake fluid is always full and that it’s the one recommended for your specific vehicle.

6. Cooling system

You should never underestimate the significance of your vehicle’s cooling system. Be sure to check out the coolant on a regular basis and always use the coolant that is most recommended for your car. If you have to inspect the cooling system, only do it when the car’s engine is cold.

Therefore, don’t take off the radiator cap while the car’s engine is still hot. If you realize that the cooling system requires frequent refilling, know that the system is likely to have a leakage hence the need to get take it to an auto repair dealer. 

If you follow these tips, you will not only reduce auto repair expenses but you will also extend the lifespan of your vehicle.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

How to Detect Common Auto Repair Problems

The more you pay attention to your car, the easier it’s going to be for you to detect common vehicle problems before they advance and become very costly to repair. Auto repair issues cannot go unnoticed for long especially if you are keen enough as a car owner. You may notice some unusual odors or simply sense a difference in the way your car operates. We’ll just look at a few signs of trouble that most car owners have experienced at some point in time.

Strange fluid leaks

If you notice some red oily spots on your car, it could be a transmission fluid leak. In fact, look out for fluids that leak from your car because it’s certainly not normal. Consider the color and consistency of these fluids. You may notice a black oily fluid if your car’s engine is leaking oil. Clear water is usually normal because it’s caused by condensation from the vehicle’s air conditioner. But a fluid with an orange color may indicate trouble so take the car to the mechanic for repairs.

Unusual noises

You may notice some unusual squeals, clicks, clunks and screeches coming from your car. It’s very important to take the car for immediate diagnosis and repair because these noises may signify serious trouble. For instance, clicks and squeals usually occur when there’s an issue with the engine speed or a loose component like a wheel cover or fan blade that’s not intact. Your brakes will screech to tell you that it’s time for maintenance. Basically noises emanating from your car mean that something needs to be fixed. Sometimes the car will start making weird noises because of using gas with the wrong octane rating than what has been recommended by the manufacturer. You need to ask your mechanic to explain the reason for any kind of unusual noise and how you can prevent it from reoccurring.

Unusual smells

Sharp odors emanating from your car usually signal something. If you notice a burning smell, make sure the issue is diagnosed because it could be an electrical shock or burning insulation. The smell of gasoline vapors could signal a leak in the fuel system. This is an issue that can be very dangerous when left to escalate. You need to have a mechanic repair that immediately.

Preventative maintenance is very important because it helps to avoid costly breakdowns. Issues like changing the oil can end up costing you a lot of money and making your car unreliable. To find out how often your car needs routine maintenance, you need to check your owner’s manual. The number of times the car needs maintenance will largely depend on your type of driving. If you use your car quite often then you’ll need more frequent servicing than what the manufacturer has recommended. The best person to advice on this would be your mechanic who also understands the condition of your car. F
ind a suitable maintenance schedule and you’ll keep your car in perfect condition.

Posted By: Crawfordville Auto and Tire http://crawfordvilleauto.com 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Warning Signs that your Car Needs Urgent Repairs

Detecting some car problems can save you a lot of money in the long run. You may also avoid some serious car accidents by seeking repairs before issues escalate. If you are a car owner, no one knows that automobile more than you. So you need to watch out for signs of trouble. Below are a couple of common signs that indicate your car needs urgent repairs.

Leaking transmission fluid
One of the most common signs of problems with your car’s transmission system is if you notice a reddish fluid leaking from underneath your car. There’s a high chance that the level of transmission oil has gone down and you need to call your mechanic and have it checked.

Cracks and holes on the windshield
The cracks and holes on the car’s windshield may not look like something serious but ignoring them can cause extensive damage. You don’t need to install a new windshield. You can have your mechanic cover the holes and cracks especially if they are relatively small. You’ll be advised on whether the windshield needs repairs or a complete replacement.

Weird noises from your car
Those weird noises emanating from beneath your car, especially when you step on the breaks, are a sign of trouble. Sometimes the car can make weird noises because some mechanical component is worn out and needs to be replaced. In other cases, the transmission oil needs to be changed. Only a qualified auto technician can identify the real issue and resolve it immediately.

Car fails to switch gears
Often times, car owners struggle to switch gears and simply assume it’s something common. When the car refuses to switch gears, there could be an issue with its transmission system. It usually happens if there’s an issue with the transmission fluid.

If you feel like your car shakes whenever you try to change gears, something could be terribly wrong. Shaking is not common and it usually occurs when the transmission system has a problem. This is something that can be easily resolved by a mechanic when you take your car for servicing. Just make sure you mention this specific problem to the auto technician.

Burning smell
If you notice a burning smell coming from any section of your car, it’s time to call a mechanic immediately. There are cases where the transmission fluid burns because the system has overheated. This burning odor can also be due to old transmission oil that needs to be replaced. You mechanic will certainly advice on the way forward.

Don’t wait for any of the warning signs to visit an auto repair shop. Make sure you take regular car maintenance seriously if you care about the state of your car. If you travel long distances, make sure you visit an auto shop to have it checked and ensure everything is in perfect order. Most importantly, choose a reputable auto repair shop that you can trust to provide quality service. Make sure the mechanics also offer emergency auto repairs.

Posted By: Crawfordville Auto and Tire http://crawfordvilleauto.com 

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Domestic Car Repair - 5 Ways to Make Sure You Don't Get Screwed

Today's cars are becoming increasingly more complex, meaning that domestic car repair requires advanced expertise now more often than not. Unfortunately, this also means that as the general public is less likely to have the knowledge necessary to fix their own cars, some domestic car repair shops are more likely to take advantage of their customers' ignorance.
As it turns out, not knowing much about domestic car repair can end up costing you quite a bit if your mechanic recommends unnecessary repairs. The Internet abounds with complaints and lawsuits alleging that auto repair shops charged their customers for unnecessary repairs. Here are 5 ways to protect oneself from being a victim in a similar case.
1: Research every domestic car repair shop you are considering. Thorough research is your number one best weapon against devious mechanics. This means checking out a repair shop through ever means available to you: word-of-mouth, the Internet, and resources such as the Better Business Bureau.
Ask around to see if anyone you know has used the repair shops you are considering, and whether their experiences were good or bad. You can also search for each repair shop's name on the Internet, as there are many forums online where people can post complaints, or praise, about their mechanics. Resources such as the Better Business Bureau can be found online and offline, and offer a way to check a business's standing and whether there are any unresolved complaints against them.
2: Ask for recommendations. This isn't quite the same as independently researching domestic car repair shops. If you don't even know where to start, or you would rather go to a shop with which someone you know has had personal experience, you can ask around for recommendations. Rank recommendation according to how long your friend has been taking their car there for example, if they have been using the same mechanic for fifteen years, their recommendation means more than someone's who has just used that mechanic once.
3: Ask lots of questions. It's perfectly fine to ask lots of questions before making a final decision to take your car there. For instance, you might want to ask about their prices, their guarantees or warrantees, how much experience their mechanics have, whether they have won any awards, and how they handle customer complaints.
Another thing to ask about is the repair work you need done. Asking many thorough, intelligent questions about the repairs that will need to be done, and any related systems, indicates that you are interested in knowing more about your car. It also indicates that you are not an easy person to take advantage of. Finally, a repair shop that is unwilling to answer your questions should indicate that you are better off taking your car elsewhere.
4: Show an interest in your car. When you take your car in for repairs, it is best not to leave it alone while you go to work or shop. Waiting for your car makes it harder for the repair shop to get away with unnecessary repairs. The shop needs to ask for approval before performing any work other than what you originally requested, and if you are right there waiting it will be easier to request a detailed explanation of the repair and why your car needs it.
On the other hand, in cases where the repair shop calls to request permission, the customer usually requests less information before approving the repair and repair shops know this. Leaving is a sign that you are too busy to care about keeping tabs on your car's repairs.
5: Request to see the problem. You often have a legal right to see the damaged part. This ensures two things: One, that the repair shop actually did replace the part, and didn't just clean the original part up and charge you for a replacement they never installed, and two, that the part did in fact need to be replaced.
When asking to see a damaged part, always request that they show you the problem, that is, why the part needed to be replaced in the first place. Also ask to see the new part if they have it on hand, on the grounds that you would like to see the difference or see what an undamaged part looks like. If you are waiting for your car when they ask your permission, ask to see the problem before approving the repair work.
The reason why domestic car repair shops get away with making unnecessary repairs is usually because the customer is too lazy to verify the need for the repair. You may have heard that a thief or rapist is more likely to choose a victim whose body language indicates that she is an easy target. The same goes with domestic car repair. The more interest and intelligence you show when dealing with an auto repair shop, the less likely a dishonest mechanic is to try to push unnecessary repairs on you. Your best method of protecting yourself is therefore to be as informed, and as involved, as possible.
Andy West is a freelance writer for DAE, which offers valuable domestic car repair [http://www.domesticautoexperts.com/] and domestic automotive maintenance [http://www.domesticautoexperts.com/articles/domestic-asian-import-repair-maintenance.htm] in the Houston area.
Posted by: Crawfordville Auto & Repair http://crawfordvilleauto.com