It’s important to find a good auto repair mechanic before you actually need one. When your vehicle breaks down or is involved in an accident, you’ll be under stress and pressure to get it back on the road as soon as possible. When you know where to go for a skilled, trustworthy mechanic, necessary maintenance and service will be simpler and quicker. The time you save by not having to track someone down is time far better spent elsewhere.
One of the most reliable ways to find an automotive shop is through word of mouth. Asking friends and neighbors where they go is a good place to start. If you know someone with the same make of car or who has had extensive work done, make sure to ask them first. Of course, there are other important factors to consider when choosing a shop and mechanic. Don’t simply take your vehicle to the first place you hear about.
Check the shop’s credentials. But don’t stop with credentials concerning just the business itself. Also check to find out what kind of training and certification the mechanics have. ASE certification through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence is an important credential for any mechanic.
Narrow it down to a few auto repair shops before you start making phone calls, and get an estimate for the work you need done. Also, be sure to ask about their labor rates and where they get their parts. It’s important to use a shop that uses only good quality parts in all their repairs.
If you can, have your general maintenance work done at the shop before any major work becomes necessary. You can get a good feel for their skill, cost, and professionalism by having small work done first. There is no reason you cannot also get a second opinion on major work. You can request the mechanic call you before doing any actual work to let you know what was found in the diagnosis. If you go elsewhere for a second opinion and the cost for the same service is significantly different, don’t hesitate to ask why.
Also do not let the appearance of an auto repair shop dissuade you. An organized shop that is kept clean and run efficiently and reliably may be housed in an older building. Of course, if there are vehicles parked randomly all over the property and the shop appears to not have been cleaned in some time, those are reasons to hesitate. Be patient and take the time to find a mechanic you can trust who handles your work in a timely manner and at reasonable rates.