Car repair is like any other business: there are unscrupulous cheats to take your money. But you can avoid being ripped off for automatic repairs if you keep the spirit of you. Here's how to proceed.
First, use a reliable and reliable mechanic. Friends are a good source of references. Ask them who they had good experiences with and who they would avoid. This is probably the best way to find a winner.
But do not just take the word of a friend for that. Discover your mechanic! You can call the Business Ethics Office to find out if he has received any complaints. Look for certificates such as the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) seal, which means that it has at least met certain minimum standards for skills and services.
Before starting any job, find out about labor prices and prices for parts and supplies. Do not ask means that you really do not have the right to be shocked if they fill your bill. And be sure to inquire about warranty on parts and labor (do not forget the work piece of the puzzle).
More importantly, get everything in writing. It means estimating work, parts warranty details and manpower, everything. If a mechanic does not give a written estimate, he is either too lazy to do so, or he leaves the door open for fraud. You do not want to play both games. And once you are in possession of pricing and warranty information, do not be afraid to shop around to see if you can reduce your costs.
If your problem is a little unusual, for example when intermittent rattles annoy most cars from time to time, do a preliminary test with the mechanic to show him exactly what you need. Do not guess it. If you can show him the problem, he can know exactly what he needs to target, which will save you labor costs and probably save him unnecessary repairs.
Before paying the bill, opt for a test drive to make sure the car is set to your satisfaction. If it is not correct, ask the mechanic to do the right thing. Even the great honest mechanics, attentive to detail, can miss things. A test drive can shed light on these failures and save you trouble later.
And speaking of the bill, read it. Check it carefully. Learn about anything you do not understand or do not look right. If you only pay the bill without checking, it's like signing a mortgage paper without reading it. Stupid, no?
Finally, pay your bill with a credit card if you can. This gives you maximum flexibility to protect you against fraud. If something goes wrong, you can call the credit card company and dispute the charges. Many cards also offer protection against fraud, so you could have another line defense.
As with most things, you can avoid getting ripped off for car repairs by being informed and careful. If you work a little before you prepare and take small steps to protect yourself, you can save yourself some inconvenience and expense.