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Tip 6 - Car Parts
If your car needs new parts her are some tips to keep in mind:
- Tell the mechanic ahead of time, that you want all the used parts returned to you. If the mechanic gets defensive or upset at your request, it is time to be specious.
- Bring a bag or box with you so you can carry the used part/s.
- Ask if you or someone else can watch while the used part is being repaired. You don't want to pay for a new part, just to find out the he replaced the old part with a used part, or didn't even change the part.
- Ask for a receipt for all the parts that were replaced, even if the part was replaced with a used or rebuild part.
- Find out if it is possible to buy the parts outside the shop.
- Is it possible to buy a used part or rebuild part?
- Is it possible to use a cheaper part/s?
- Is their a guarantee on the part/s? Ask the auto shop to give you a written guarantee.
- If the work or parts are done under the table to save taxes, still ask for something in writing that the shop did the work, or record all the conversations that you have with the mechanic and/or auto repair shop.
Tip 7 - Estimates
Tell the mechanic that you want a written estimate before he or she does any work on your car. Make sure the estimate covers the following:
- work orders
- part prices
- labor rates
- warranty information
Once you have your estimate you might want to ask some of the following questions:
- Find out if their is a cheaper way to perform the necessary repairs.
- Which repairs are necessary, and which are optional?
- Why are the repairs that are optional necessary?
- Is there anything that I did to cause the need for repairs?
- What do you recommend if anything to prevent future repairs?
Tip 8 - Check Reliability
Ask the the mechanic to check something that doesn't need to be repaired, or ask them to check your oil or tires. It is a good way to check their honesty and reliability.
- Is he honest?
- Does the mechanic have the patience to explain the problem, and offer you a solution?
- Does he try to repair something that doesn't need repairing?
- Are they respectful?
- Do you address you correctly?
- Do the other mechanic's use appropriate language?
- If the auto shop sells diffident types of oil, or
other products do they always recommend the more
expensive product. If they tell you the less
expensive product is not reliable, then why do they
sell something that is not reliable?
Tip 9 - Mechanic's Personality & Atmosphere
The personality of the mechanic and the atmosphere of the shop can indicate to you the type of service you could expect.
- Does the mechanic listen to the problem?
- Does he or her respect you, your concerns, and options?
- Does he or she pressure you into doing repairs that you don't think are necessary?
- Do you feel comfortable around the mechanic?
- Does he or she hold up the the time table that was agreed on?
- Do the mechanics respect each other, or at least appear to? Do they fight between themselves? Play loud disrespectful music?
- Do the mechanics appear busy or spending a lot of time hanging around?
- If possible while you are waiting talk to the
other customers, and get their opinion? Are they
customers of the auto shop for an extended period of
time, or is it everybody's first time at that auto
Tip 10 - Physical Aspects
The physical aspects of the repair shop can indicate the type of service to expect, but not always. Drive by the auto repair shop just to get an impression.
- Who is hanging around the shop. Is the shop clean?
- Are there & men waiting for service or to pick up their car?
- Is the price list up to date?
- Are there the same people working there all the time, or do the people working there change weekly?
- The most important thing is do you feel computable going there?
- Is there a "waiting room" for you to wait?
- Does the auto repair shop look like a junk yard?
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