It is time for you to get serious about car repair so that you're not getting into situations that you don't want to be in. Perhaps you want to learn more of what you can do personally or know how to better find a good auto repair shop. Whatever the case may be, it's time to get started.
If you are having work done on your car, make sure you get a written estimate beforehand. The estimate should include what is being repaired, the parts that will be needed and the anticipated cost for labor. It should also say that they will call for your approval before doing any additional work which exceeds the amount or time specified.
If automotive service technicians and mechanics and hatch locks tend to become stiff, avoid breaking your key off in the lock by lubricating them periodically with a penetrating oil spray. You can use the plastic extender that comes with the spray can to deliver oil to the interior of the locking mechanism. If you have misplaced this extender, just spray your key liberally and turn it in the stiff lock several times.
Contact your local Better Business Bureau if you need more information on a mechanic or a garage. If some complaints have been filed against them, your Better Business Bureau will tell you. Ask your friends and family about the different mechanics they have dealt with in the past to get some recommendations.
Changing a car battery is quick and easy. It usually involves unfastening a clip on top of the battery and using a wrench to loosen and remove the connectors. (Naturally, you should do this with your engine off!) Brush the connectors clean with a wire brush. Lift out the old battery and put the new battery in its place. Fasten the connectors securely and refasten the clasp. You should be good to go!
Ask for parts that are classified as OEM parts. OEM parts are parts that are made by the manufacturer. Although generic parts are more affordable, OEM parts are better quality and will last longer. Getting a good deal on generic parts means you might have to purchase the same parts again and pay a mechanic to change them within the next few years.
Avoid unexpected auto repair problems while driving by performing a basic safety check before you set out in your car. Start your engine, turn on your lights and your flashers and walk all the way around your car. Check your tires and make sure your lights and flashers are working properly. This simple check will ensure a safer ride and help you avoid the need for emergency repairs.
Check a variety of sources of information before attempting an auto repair for the first time. Do a good online search, watch instructional videos and seek out books at your local library and take time to talk with an experienced mechanic before you dive in to try that repair. Once you feel comfortable with the concept, make a list of the things you need and the steps you will need to take to make the repair successfully.
How to find a good garage - Which?
To keep your car roadworthy and your bills in check, read our Which? tips to finding a good, trustworthy garage that'll charge you a fair price. How to find a good garage - Which?
Pick up a book on simple auto repairs. You may find that some smaller repairs you can do at home, especially if you are mechanically inclined. Though, don't go crazy! If it's an advanced issue, get your car to a legitimate repair shop as soon as you can. Don't make the problem worse with a shoddy repair job.
Be wary of auto repair shops that try to pressure you into getting repairs done. You may go into a shop for one thing, and the mechanic will tell you that you have other problems. It's fine if a mechanic informs you of any possible work that may need to be done, but when they try to turn it into a requirement, rather than an option, it's time to find a new mechanic.
Listen to your gut. If you bring your car into the shop and the technician doesn't seem to be on the up and up, consider going somewhere else. At the very least, the person probably doesn't care that much about you and your car, and you deserve better service than that.
If you are considering a do-it-yourself auto repair, make very sure that you know what you are getting in to. Get a qualified quote for having a professional do the work for you, then determine what it will take in parts and tools for you to do it yourself. It could very well be that you will not save that much and will be risking things such as safety and reliability of your vehicle.
If you don't think the mechanic fully understands the problem, ask them to take the car for a short drive. Often, they can better diagnose what is happening this way. Always go along for the drive as well, and make sure to point out anything that has been bothering you. If they refuse, the person is probably not the mechanic for you.
You do not need to purchase a new filter every time you go in to have an oil change. The auto repair person may show you a worn filter next to a new one and claim it is yours, but be firm and let them know that you do not need a new one right now.
The condition a repair shop is in tells you a lot about the service you can expect from them. If everything is out of place and messy, that is the way the job may get done. Try to do business with a shop that is neat and clean and full of modern equipment.
Never allow low prices and flashy advertisements to lead you to an auto mechanic. Usually when Read the Full Guide
try that hard to get customers, it means that they are not that great at what they do. Research the place ahead of time to see if there is anything you should be concerned about.
Some repairs to your car are free. Certain makes and models of cars have a known manufacturer defect. If that is the case, you will likely receive a recall notice in the mail, telling you how to get the defect repaired. You can check online as well, at the NHTSA site, which lists known recall notices.
Ask your mechanic if he is willing to use re-manufactured or salvaged parts. Using these parts can save you hundreds of dollars and is good for the environment as well. If he is unwilling to use them you may want to find someone else to work on your vehicle, as there really is no reason not to.
When you take a trip to the car wash, don't forget to clean the inside of your vehicle as well as the outside. Take a second to run the vacuum and sponge across the interior: spilled drinks can corrode the interior over time and other debris does long-term damage as well.
All it takes to repair a car is knowledge. Every mechanic and amateur mechanic is able to repair a car and install new parts due to being knowledgeable about the workings of the car and the repair process. You have been given tips and advice in this article that make it possible to repair a car. Use them to your advantage and good luck!