How to Select the Car Mechanic of Your Dreams

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Finding a trustworthy mechanic is an important decision that every car owner will have to make, but unfortunately it’s often a cumbersome process. To help save you some heartache, time, and money, we put together a well-thought out list of criteria to use as a resource during your search.

Garage Certifications:

Don’t forget to check to make sure the garage, as well as all mechanics working on your car are certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). All ASE certified mechanics have undergone thorough testing and have at least 2 years of relative experience.

There are also several garages and mechanics that have been certified by car manufacturers, which means they have fulfilled manufacturing certification requirements, will have the latest in education and technology required to fix your car.

Also check to see if the garage is a AAA Auto Approved Repair shop. AAA pre-screens these shops and their mechanics, and all certified mechanics must sign an agreement committing them to always deliver reliable high-quality service.

Ask for Recommendations

If your friends and family members have vehicles similar to yours, ask them where they bring their car for routine maintenance and repairs, what service and repairs have they had performed, how much did they pay and if there are mechanics they do not recommend.

You can also ask your car insurance company if they have a list of trusted mechanics in your area.

Research

Your greatest ally in the search for a new car mechanic is the internet, because it’s almost impossible for a bad mechanic to hide their unsavory practices for long due to Google reviews and other online review sources. A few recommended sources are Google Business reviews, Angie’s List, Consumer Reports, and the Better Business Bureau. As you’re reading reviews, check for validity. What do we mean by this? Reviews are a great resource, but make sure they’re coming from a reliable source and not a mechanic or family member associated with the garage or a nearby competitor. How do you know if the review is reliable? Look for reviews associated with profile pictures and that mention specific details.

Reliable – “After a thorough inspection, Steve determined it was the CV joint causing the clicking noise on the driver’ side door. He provided me with a detailed estimate, time frame, and showed me the problem, explaining it in layman’s terms and answered any questions I had.”

Unreliable – “This shop sucks!” or “I love this shop! Best in Brevard!”

Give it a test run!

Before you’re faced with a huge repair, try out the garage for a routine maintenance service, like new tires, a tire rotation, or oil change. You’ll have a better understanding as to how the garage operates.

Ask About Warranties

Never commit to any maintenance or repair work on your vehicle without asking if they offer guarantees or warranties on the services performed.

☐ Ask Mechanic to Show You the Problem

If a mechanic is not willing to show you the actual problem or part in question, run! A good mechanic will be more than willing to show you the problem, as well as explain how it happened and how he plans on fixing it.

Convenience

There are a few items to consider when it comes to repair time, like how far away is the mechanic from your home or work, and do their hours fit within your schedule?

Please keep in mind that all warranty repairs will require you to bring your car to the dealership, but if it’s for an item like routine maintenance, under federal law you have the right to have the vehicle serviced anywhere without voiding the warranty. And ultimately, always trust your gut! It’s not likely to steer you wrong.

Finding a trustworthy mechanic is an important decision that every car owner will have to make, but unfortunately it’s often a cumbersome process. To help save you some heartache, time, and money, we put together a well-thought out list of criteria to use as a resource during your search.

Garage Certifications:

Don’t forget to check to make sure the garage, as well as all mechanics working on your car are certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). All ASE certified mechanics have undergone thorough testing and have at least 2 years of relative experience.

There are also several garages and mechanics that have been certified by car manufacturers, which means they have fulfilled manufacturing certification requirements, will have the latest in education and technology required to fix your car.

Also check to see if the garage is a AAA Auto Approved Repair shop. AAA pre-screens these shops and their mechanics, and all certified mechanics must sign an agreement committing them to always deliver reliable high-quality service.

Ask for Recommendations

If your friends and family members have vehicles similar to yours, ask them where they bring their car for routine maintenance and repairs, what service and repairs have they had performed, how much did they pay and if there are mechanics they do not recommend.

You can also ask your car insurance company if they have a list of trusted mechanics in your area.

Research

Your greatest ally in the search for a new car mechanic is the internet, because it’s almost impossible for a bad mechanic to hide their unsavory practices for long due to Google reviews and other online review sources. A few recommended sources are Google Business reviews, Angie’s List, Consumer Reports, and the Better Business Bureau. As you’re reading reviews, check for validity. What do we mean by this? Reviews are a great resource, but make sure they’re coming from a reliable source and not a mechanic or family member associated with the garage or a nearby competitor. How do you know if the review is reliable? Look for reviews associated with profile pictures and that mention specific details.

Reliable – “After a thorough inspection, Steve determined it was the CV joint causing the clicking noise on the driver’ side door. He provided me with a detailed estimate, time frame, and showed me the problem, explaining it in layman’s terms and answered any questions I had.”

Unreliable – “This shop sucks!” or “I love this shop! Best in Brevard!”

Give it a test run!

Before you’re faced with a huge repair, try out the garage for a routine maintenance service, like new tires, a tire rotation, or oil change. You’ll have a better understanding as to how the garage operates.

Ask About Warranties

Never commit to any maintenance or repair work on your vehicle without asking if they offer guarantees or warranties on the services performed.

Ask Mechanic to Show You the Problem

If a mechanic is not willing to show you the actual problem or part in question, run! A good mechanic will be more than willing to show you the problem, as well as explain how it happened and how he plans on fixing it.

Convenience

There are a few items to consider when it comes to repair time, like how far away is the mechanic from your home or work, and do their hours fit within your schedule?

Please keep in mind that all warranty repairs will require you to bring your car to the dealership, but if it’s for an item like routine maintenance, under federal law you have the right to have the vehicle serviced anywhere without voiding the warranty. And ultimately, always trust your gut! It’s not likely to steer you wrong.