Car repairs are stressful enough, not knowing who to turn to for trustworthy service makes the experience even worse. Unfortunately, some repair shops are infamous for overcharging and misleading customers. Don’t fall victim to one of these shops who give mechanics a bad name.
Finding a reliable auto repair shop:
Whether you are new to the area or just switching shops, follow these tips to find a mechanic who will provide reliable and trustworthy service when those pesky repairs are needed:
1. Check for certifications
Any good repair shop will only hire mechanics who are ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) Certified. So, the first step in finding a good repair shop is to check their certifications and ask what their mechanics are proficient in.
These certifications are often times displayed on a wall in the front office. If not, ask the owner for proof of certification. You might also want to take note of any awards displayed in the shop. Community awards are always a sign of a trustworthy and knowledgeable mechanic.
2. Don’t fall for scare tactics
If an auto repair shop is trying to convince you that your car is a death trap, consider getting a second opinion from another shop. Some mechanics will try to scare you into getting your car repaired at their shop, but a good mechanic doesn’t need to use such tactics.
If something doesn’t seem quite right or you feel pressured to repair your car, take it somewhere else to see if your suspicions are warranted.
3. Take a look around the shop
Before giving them your car, make sure your mechanic keeps a clean and organized shop. While some grease and grime should be expected, a good repair shop will have a tidy appearance and clean garage.
The staff should also be friendly and helpful. A dependable repair shop will be happy to answer your questions, show you around, and introduce you to employees. During your visit, talk to other customers at the repair shop and ask about any past experiences they’ve had there.
4. Read reviews
If you want to know what customers think about a repair shop, simply type their name into Google and see what pops up. Also, check for reviews/complaints on websites like BBB (Better Business Bureau), Yelp!, and Facebook. This should quickly give you an idea of the kind of service they offer to customers.
However, it’s important to read the reviews with a grain of salt. If every review is bad then that is obviously a red flag, but a few negative reviews can be expected. In many cases, these negative reviews are simply the result of a grumpy customer.
5. Ask for your old parts
Don’t be afraid to ask for your old parts after your car has been repaired. These parts should display obvious signs of wear and tear. A good repair shop will be happy to show you what they replaced, and explain anything that is unclear.
Some mechanics will replace parts that don’t need replacing in order to increase your bill. If your old parts do not show signs of damage and your mechanic doesn’t have good explanation, find a different shop and share your experience to spread the word.
Knowing how to find a trustworthy auto repair shop is essential for anybody who owns a car. Follow the tips listed above to avoid being swindled out of your hard earned money by a shady mechanic.