Going to the mechanic can be scary, especially if you really have no idea why your car is making that squeaky sound. How will you know if the mechanic is qualified for the job? How will you be able to tell if they are ripping you off? Does everything they say need fixed really need fixed? It can be nerve-racking to say the least.
I try to look at everyone in a positive light, and not go into any interaction assuming that the person is trying to rip me off, but I have to admit, these thoughts cross my mind when looking for a mechanic. So, to curb my negative thoughts, I’ve compiled a list of five things to look for when finding a mechanic.
Do Your Homework
Do a little research and look into the sound your car is making (or whatever it’s doing) to see what it might be, and then look into how to fix that. Google is your friend here. If you’ve determined it’s probably a CV joint, look into the cost of a CV joint. Then look into an average hourly rate of a mechanic. Once you have an estimated cost, you will be able to compare the mechanics quote to your research.
Ask around and see who your friends and family use for car repair. Look on Google, Yelp, or Angie’s List for local shop reviews.
Ask About Certifications
Ask about certifications for the shop. Are they a certified repair facility? Are their technicians ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certified? Knowing the certifications of both the shop and the technicians will tell you how serious they take their business and your car needs.
Look to See if the Shop is Clean
When you finally decide on a shop to take your car to, look and see how clean it is. Are the tools organized? Is the lobby area clean? Is there stuff scattered around? Yes, this is a garage and things are going to get dirty, but how they manage the mess says a lot about them.
Talk With the Mechanic
Build a relationship with the mechanic. Let them know of your concerns and thoughts. A good technician will talk you through what’s happening with your car and what they are going to do to fix it. Talk to them after the work is done, ask them what all they did and about their service warranty.
Finding a reliable technician can be intimidating, but with a little work on your part, the process can be smooth and you will be sure you are getting good work at a good price.