Besides becoming familiar with your car’s model, you should know a few other tricks as well. Read this article so you can save both time and money.
You do not have to contact a mechanic every time your car has problems. Some of the work can be done on your own, as there are problems that are relatively easy to repair. If you want to take a chance, you can go online and do some research to pinpoint what the problem is. You can save a lot by doing small repairs yourself.
Go through your owner’s manual and dog ear the most useful pages. You can even find the manual can help you fix the issue.
Keep a record of all the repairs you make on your vehicle. Future problems can be easily solved when auto technicians have access to past records. No records means a blank slate to go on.
Look up reviews online for body shops online. This can give you know how the general public views their experience. You can find a place you are comfortable giving your business to.
Make a DIY kit to store in the trunk to help you in times of need. You should have basic tools such as equipment to change a tire, fix a flat, add oil and a gallon of water. Buy a jack if your car does not already have one equipped. You should also have good quality Phillips head and flat head screwdrivers, socket wrenches and a ratchet set, a torque wrench and an adjustable wrench. Always purchase quality tools. Buy quality ones that you are sure won’t fail when you really need them.
Test drive your car before paying the auto repair shop.
Do not hand the keys over until you have talked both price and the rates for labor. Some repair shops have details about their rates posted on the walls, but you should not hesitate to ask about rates if you do not see any information. This will give you a better idea of what you will be billed. Shops also often give you estimated repair costs and times. You may find that a repair that is deemed minor may take all day.
Make sure that you replace old parts with OEM parts.These are original parts direct from the manufacturer of your car. Generic parts may be cheaper, but they may not be good enough quality. It may cost you more in the amount later as OEM components to begin with.
Your tire pressure should be checked when purchase some gas. Make sure there are no objects embedded in your tires at the same time. In the event that you detect a problem, you can have it repaired before you have a blowout. Do not take a chance by driving on damaged tires.
If you do not have headlights that are shining bright enough, they might just be dirty. Use a reputable glass cleaning product and improve the situation dramatically.
If you just bought a car, and you realize there is a problem, get in touch with the manufacturer. Your car may be recalled, especially if other people have complaints. In the case of a recall, most manufacturers will pick up the cost of fixing it.
Look for obvious “red flags” when dealing with a new auto repair mechanics may give off. If they ignore your questions or talk in circles, then you will want to go elsewhere. You want to be able to trust the person doing your repairs, so don’t fear seeing someone else.
Once a mechanic diagnoses your car, ask if you can take some time to consider whether or not you want to hire them. Call several other places to get quotes on the same work the original mechanic says you need. Sometimes, you may find a better price and save a lot of money.
Always try to figure out the problem with your car’s problems yourself before you bring it in for repairs.You probably know that certain mechanics will come with lies to charge more money.
Store auto repair records in a file folder kept in the vehicle. Have them divided by the kind of repairs done or put them in chronological order, with the newest receipts first. That will allow both you and your mechanic to keep track of what has already been done to your car. This will be valuable to you.
Ask for labor rates or prices before giving the keys to a shop. Some shops have these costs in conspicuous places, so read carefully and ask questions if you don’t understand something. You need to know how and why you are being billed for the repairs. Some mechanics bill you for estimated labor times established by the manufacturer suggests. Some minor repairs might be considered as an all day job by those manufacturers’ established times.
If your mechanic does not want to give a written estimate on repairing your car, do not get the work done there. You can’t complain later if you didn’t get the estimate in writing.
Think about snapping some photos of your car prior to bringing it in for repairs somewhere. Some unethical shops may strip parts off your car to justify billing you for more repairs. You should document the original damages done to your vehicle in case your mechanic fails to fix them or makes things worse.
Don’t put water where the windshield washer fluid goes. The washer system works with a certain type of fluid, and water can easily damage the washer. Check your compartment when you can to be sure that it gets refills when it needs them. Don’t just wait for your compartment to be all of the way empty.
Don’t try and fix complex automotive issues. What you may see as a simple fix can really be very complicated, especially if the vehicle is newer. Let a repair shop diagnose the problem. Let them know what the problem is and the noises you hear, but let them be the ones to diagnose the issue.
Rotate your tires on a regular basis in order to prevent tire wear. Usually tires should be rotated about every 6,000 miles, but some car makes or models may have different requirements. Get new, good quality tires; they won’t get worn down very quickly.
Don’t let a mechanic talk you that getting an engine flushed is something that normally needs to be done during maintenance. This is a costly service is expensive and not something that is typically done during the course of normal maintenance.
Drive axle boots need to be looked at on a regular basis. These are needed because they provide protection to the axle joint, which is located behind the tires. They can be inspected simply by turning your car’s wheels and taking a look just behind. Replace boots if they appear cracked, as this can lead to leaks.
Keep convenience in mid when looking for a good auto repair shop. Many mechanic shops offer perks such as shuttle service to bring you to work. If they can get the work done on your car immediately, you won’t have to shell out a lot of money for other means of transportation.
As discussed above, learning a few things about auto repair can help you fix small problems yourself and save a lot of money. You can teach other people how to do repairs and rely on your own expertise. Use these tips and fix problems yourself only if you are comfortable enough.