How to Find a Good Auto Repair Shop
Auto repair is an essential part of vehicle ownership. Whether you drive a car, truck or SUV for work or pleasure, it’s crucial that your vehicle is serviced correctly.
If your vehicle is in need of service, find an auto repair shop that you trust. Look for a place that has a good reputation in the community and is staffed by friendly, knowledgeable technicians. Ask for references and contact them directly to get more information about their work.
Ask about their prices for repairs and parts. Some shops charge a flat rate for labor on repairs, while others base their price on an independent or manufacturer’s estimate of the time needed to complete the work. You can also request a second opinion on recommended repairs, or even have the work done elsewhere if the shop’s price is too high.
Make sure the repair shop honors the warranty on your vehicle. The warranty covers repairs and replacement parts. Your warranty may require the shop to follow specific procedures or provide certain documentation.
Check if the mechanic is certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. The nonprofit organization tests and certifies automotive professionals. Technicians must pass an exam and retest every five years to maintain their certification.
Ensure the shop has an appropriate number of trained and experienced technicians, especially if you’re having a more complex or expensive repair. Some shops offer a “master technician” or “specialist” designation to employees with significant experience in a particular type of repair, such as brakes.
It’s a good idea to pick an auto repair shop that has been in business for many years. These shops typically have more experienced and skilled workers than newer or smaller ones.
They should also have a well-stocked parts department. This will allow them to quickly find what you need, even if you don’t have it in the shop right away.
Mechanics who are well-trained in the latest repair techniques will have more confidence when working on your vehicle. They will also be able to provide better repairs and faster turnaround times.
You should be able to find a list of certifications and licensing requirements from your state’s Attorney General’s office or consumer protection agency. These organizations can also tell you if there’s a record of complaints about a particular shop.
Ask about maintenance schedules for your vehicle and compare the shop’s recommendations to those in your owner’s manual. Some shops recommend servicing your car more often than the manufacturer suggests, which can add up to extra costs over the life of your car.
Be sure to ask about the parts they use for repairs and how long you can expect them to last. Your state may have regulations about which types of parts are acceptable for auto repairs.
Your insurance company will have a list of approved auto repair shops in your area. The shop will be required to notify your insurer if they find additional damage that needs to be repaired. This can help prevent delays in getting your vehicle back on the road after an accident.