Understanding You're Making The Right Car Repair Choices

Surely you have had nasty car repair experiences in the past. You may have had good ones at well, but no one likes shelling out tons of money and wondering what is really going on. Instead, you want the knowledge necessary to make well-informed decisions next time you are dealing with car repairs.

If you hear a squealing sound when you step on your brakes, it is likely that you need new brake pads or rotors. Do not wait to have a mechanic check your brakes. There will be more damage to pay for and it is also dangerous to drive your car if your brakes are not functioning properly.

Preventative maintenance is very important if you own a car. Do not hesitate to spend money on the tools you need to inspect and maintain your car or having a mechanic look at your car regularly. Maintaining your car regularly could help you save a lot on repairs or towing if your car breaks down.

Each time you get your vehicle repaired, no matter what the reason, be sure you have a record of it. If further issues develop later, the mechanic may want to see the historical documentation of what has already been done. If you don't have a record of past work, it may cost you money and make it hard for the technician to diagnose the problem.

Always ask about the certification and the insurance of a mechanic before letting them fix your car. If something goes wrong, the mechanic's insurance will cover damages and usually provides you with a car you can drive until yours is fixed. A mechanic who is not certified does not have an insurance either.

Are your headlights clean? The roads you drive on sometimes contain greasy residues, which can get on your lights. Therefore, this will reduce the brightness of your lights. You will be able to see well when using a reliable glass cleaner.


When having repairs on your car, it is important to keep warranties in mind, especially when purchasing costly components. Ask the mechanic about the warranties on any parts he is replacing. Ask about the lentgh of time of the warranty and for a contract in writing to review it.

If you have never done any auto repair on your own, you should stick with small jobs and do lots of homework to learn how to do larger jobs. Be certain not to start taking your car apart if you aren't sure how to put it back together. Before starting any car repair job, be sure you have all the necessary parts and tools in place and that you know exactly what you need to do to complete the job from start to finish.

Understand how the repair shop you are considering charges before signing any agreements. Some shops will charge a flat fee for labor, while others base it off of time. Some will opt for original parts, while others will use generics. Know what you have ahead of you before being accountable.

If you are planning a DIY auto repair, be sure to give yourself plenty of time to complete it. Start early in the day with all of the tools, parts and fluids that you will need close at hand. Remember that, no matter how well you plan, something unexpected will come up and consume your time. Avoid running out of daylight by getting an early start that will allow you to cope with the unexpected.

Changing a car battery is quick and easy. It usually involves unfastening a clip on top of the battery and using a wrench to loosen and remove the connectors. (Naturally, you should do this with your engine off!) Brush the connectors clean with a wire brush. Lift out the old battery and put the new battery in its place. Fasten the connectors securely and refasten the clasp. You should be good to go!

Do not worry if you find a puddle of water under your car. Puddles are usually caused by condensation from your air conditioning system. You should worry if you have not been using your air conditioning system or if you find puddles of water under your car on a regular basis.

Find out about labor rates before you let a mechanic work on your car. Read Full Report should have your mechanic diagnose the issues and assess how much work will be needed. Make sure you understand how the mechanic will bill you and have a manager give you an estimate of how much labor time is needed instead of trusting a technician who is not responsible for giving quotes.



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How to find a good garage - Which?


To keep your car roadworthy and your bills in check, read our Which? tips to finding a good, trustworthy garage that'll charge you a fair price. How to find a good garage - Which?

Avoid being run over by your own car! When you jack your car up, be sure to set your emergency brake. Place bricks behind the tires you are not working on to keep your car from rolling. Keep a set of wedges or three or four bricks in the trunk of your car in case you have to change a flat tire on a hill.

Listen to your gut. If you bring your car into the shop and the technician doesn't seem to be on the up and up, consider going somewhere else. At the very least, the person probably doesn't care that much about you and your car, and you deserve better service than that.

Never underestimate Walmart when it comes to having certain services done on your car. You can get an oil change there for quite a bit less than you will pay for one at an auto shop. They also sell tires that are priced much better than those at most tire shops.

If you need auto repairs, but your budget is very tight, look into getting your car repaired by a vocational school. They often look for cars that need repairs for their students to work on. This can be a very cost effective way of dealing with your auto problem.

Ask if you can go for a short test drive with a mechanic after getting your car fixed. Do not pay for the repairs until you are sure the issue is fixed. If you still hear the noise that caused you to bring the car to the mechanic in the first place, do not hesitate to ask for a refund.

Do not pick your auto mechanic based only on price. A cheap mechanic with a poor track record of service is not a good value at all. If the work is shoddy, you wind up wasting your time going back to the mechanic to get the same problem fixed. A good quality mechanic that charges a bit more is worth the extra money.

Learning more about auto repairs is quite helpful. The tips from this article should have helped you learn the basics of auto repair. Remember what you have learned here the next time your car starts having problems.

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