Finding An Honest Mechanic: Tips For Car Novices

If you've got car troubles, and you aren't car savvy, a mechanic is probably your only option to get you back on the road again. Sadly, many consumers complain that some mechanics are less than honest, and they end up being overcharged. If you're not sure what's really wrong with your car, how can you be sure the mechanic you choose will only charge you for the actual problem? Here are some helpful tips to make sure you find the right mechanic who give you nothing but straight talk.

Think Small

Instead of taking your car to the dealership, consider a small, independent mechanic instead. Smaller businesses have a whole lot more to lose by being dishonest, so they're more likely to cut the news to you straight. Look for reviews online or ask family and friends for recommendations. Most small mechanics rely on word of mouth and cannot afford to lose customers due to a bad experience. They also want to build long lasting relationships with customers in order to get repeat business, so it only makes sense that they'll lean more towards honesty.

Check In

If you are able, take a look at several mechanic shops before you make a decision. Does the shop look clean and professional? Are there a lot of customers picking up their vehicles, or do you see unhappy faces in the waiting room? Do they explain the problem clearly and concisely and provide estimates detailing everything that needs to be done including the price? These are important questions you should ask yourself when you're scoping out a mechanic and can mean the difference between a pleasant experience rather than a stressful one.

Don't Be A Pushover

In order to protect your hard earned money, it's never a good idea to tell a mechanic to "do whatever you need to." Instead, you should clearly inform them of the problem your vehicle is experiencing, and then ask for a detailed diagnosis and an estimate with line items showing you the exact cost of labor and materials. If you give a mechanic free reign, they're going to look for any other problems your car might have that you can wait to repair, and may try to tack that onto your final bill. Make sure the mechanic notifies you every step of the way with the repair process so you know exactly what is wrong and how much it will cost. 

To learn more, contact an auto repair shop like Soundside Automotive.