When you need your car fixed, you usually need it done as soon as you can. That’s why it’s important for you to not only know what needs to be done, but how you will get it repaired. Whether you will do the repairs or plan to take it to a mechanic, here are some smart auto repair tips.
Familiarize yourself with the dashboard of your car. Your dashboard should display five different kinds of warning, including the check engine light, oil pressure warning, an alternator warning, a temperature warning and a brake warning. Learn to recognize these different lights so you can easily identify what needs your attention.
When you are shopping for a repair shop, take into consideration whether they have worked on the same type of car as yours. If they have, there is a better chance they can help resolve any issues you have.
Schedule yourself extra time for free checkups, especially if you are going in on a weekend. No matter how early you get in, there are only so many bays in the garage. That means that your car may have to wait for a few paying clients before it gets looked at.
Avoid unexpected auto repair problems while driving by performing a basic safety check before you set out in your car. Start your engine, turn on your lights and your flashers and walk all the way around your car. Check your tires and make sure your lights and flashers are working properly. This simple check will ensure a safer ride and help you avoid the need for emergency repairs.
Take action if you believe a garage or dealership ripped you off. Notify one of the manager and give them a chance to issue a refund. If you are still not satisfied, contact your local Better Business Bureau to file a complaint. Your city or state consumer affair office is also a good resource.
If you need to fix a scratch or paint over an area, make sure you select the right color. Check the owner’s manual to see if you can find a code for the color of your car or look for a sticker located under the hood or on the driver’s side front door to find the color code.
Make sure you know where your owner’s manual is and use it! If there is a problem with your car, you will be lost without it. Sometimes, an issue is simply a result of a lack of understanding. Pick it up, read through it, and see if you can figure out what is going on.
You should not choose a repair shop or a mechanic right away if you are rushed. If your car needs some repairs right away, find a friend or family member who can lend you their vehicle or give you rides until you find a reliable garage or dealership to repair your vehicle.
Never leave valuables in your vehicle when you bring it to be repaired. It is true that most shops have very trust worthy employees, but not all do, and you do not want to be a victim of theft. Instead, protect yourself by cleaning your vehicle and removing anything that is not attached to the car.
It is common for folks to seek repairs for one issue, only to be told that their car has additional problems. They do this to make you think you’re getting a deal. Let them know you will get back with them so that you can try to locate a better deal.
If you need to get your vehicle fixed, choose a garage or a dealership that hires certified technicians. The person who runs the place might have a certification but this does not mean that certified people will work on your car. Choosing certified technicians is a good way of making sure qualified people are fixing your car.
Pay attention to your check engine light! If one of your warning lights is illuminated, take that as a warning! Don’t neglect it! The warning lights on your dashboard are designed to give you early notification of potential problems. By taking your car to an auto repair shop as soon as one of these lights is lit, you can nip the problem in the bud!
Keep good records of your car’s repair history and maintenance schedules. This often helps a mechanic diagnose problems more quickly. Without a good history of the car, the mechanic may waste time finding the problem. This can be expensive. In addition, when you keep good records, it tells the mechanic you take car maintenance seriously, and that you know what you are doing. They are less likely to “pad” your bill, since they know you are well informed.
Do not neglect the wheel-well splash-guards. Inspect them regularly and replace them if they become loose or torn. The splash-guard protect some very important parts from dust, ice and debris. If you often drive on dirty roads, install some additional mud flaps on your vehicle and inspect your splash-guards more often.
Get a written guarantee of the workmanship from your auto mechanic. If something similar to the first repair goes wrong shortly after you get the car back from the mechanic, this may fall under the service warranty. You should be able to have the car fixed again at no charge.
When you are washing your car, take the mats outside and hit them once or twice with the hose. Small particles can become lodged in the fibers and wear holes in the rubber surface of the mats. Holes don’t look good and allow the dirt to have a clear path to the carpet beneath.
With these tips, you should feel more comfortable about fixing your car. You should know have some ideas that can help you to get your automobile repaired quickly, so that you can go on with your life. Don’t wait until you have a problem with your car; keep this information on hand so you have somewhere to start.