If your car is making funny noises or refusing to start, it can put you in a tough spot but even worse, car problems can put you and your family at risk. We have often heard customers say they feel the same about taking their car to their mechanic as they do about taking themselves to the dentist - they just want to know how much it's going to hurt and how much it's going to cost.
Keeping your car running well doesn't have to be overly time-consuming or expensive if you find an auto repair shop you trust. We know how hard it is to find an auto repair shop that you can go back to each time. Here are some handy tips to help you find the right shop:
1) Ask neighbors, family, friends and business associates about their experience with a repair facility or mechanic - shops and mechanics that have earned their respect, earned it for a reason.
2) Find out if the facility employs ASE-certified technicians because ASE tests and certifies automotive professionals in all areas of auto repair and service. Additionally, look for recognition from industry partners which actually interview customers from a shop's database before giving their seal of approval.
3) Ask how long the facility has been in business - any repair shop that has stayed in business for years has probably survived for a good reason - providing honest, high-quality service at a fair price. And they are likely to stay around for the long haul as well.
4) Similarly, avoid shops that appear to have high mechanic/employee turnover. This can be an indication of poor working conditions, low pay, or employees just not being treated with respect. Nothing worse than a mechanic working on your car that doesn't really care about being there! Furthermore, if the same technician has been observing and diagnosing your car over the years, he will know your car that much better.
5) Look at the facility's ratings on on-line sources such as Google, Citysearch, Yelp and Angie's List. The best shops will tend to have lots of reviews, over a long period time, and an overall high rating of course.
6) Finally, observe the shop's cleanliness and organization, lobby and bathrooms. While this may seem a superficial test at best, it goes a long way when deciding how carefully the facility is managed and how the mechanics feel about their place of work.
Once you select an auto repair shop, taking your car to that shop for regular maintenance, expected repairs, and even oil changes, ensures that the mechanics are more familiar with your vehicle and can notice when something needs to be repaired before it causes further damage or problems to your vehicle.
A good repair shop will take pride in long-standing relationships with their customers. They won't use scare tactics or try to push you into repairing something that isn't necessary or before its necessary. They are in it for the long haul and will advise you to the best of their knowledge of anticipated expenditures down the road so you can plan for them.