Auto Repair: Keep Your Car In Shape

It can be intimidating to figure out what is wrong with your vehicle, which is why it is usually advisable to seek the help of a qualified and trained mechanic. However, choosing the best one for your specific needs can be challenging. Do not despair, as there are things you can do to make a wise decision.

Pay attention to the gauges and trouble lights on your cars dash. Learn to recognize the warning signs of a car that is overheating, low on oil or not charging the battery. Knowing which of these indicators need immediate attention can prevent damage to your car and save you cash in the long run.

If any parts of your car need to be replaced, make sure you ask for the (OEM) Original Equipment Manufacturer parts instead of generic parts. Keeping the exact specifications required by the manufacturer is essential in having optimum performance. Although generic parts are cheaper, spending a little more on OEM parts will make a big impact on your car’s longevity.

Don’t pay money for air. Familiarize yourself with the correct air pressure of your car tires and invest in an air compressor. Check your tires on a regular basis and keep them properly inflated on your own. Being able to do this yourself on a regular basis will save you money in terms of wear and tear and regular maintenance.

In addition to basic tire changing equipment, keep a plastic tote filled with DIY auto repair supplies in the trunk of your car in case of emergencies. Fill it with at least a quart each of motor oil, transmission fluid, steering fluid, and brake fluid and a gallon of water. Add a can of penetrating oil spray, a roll of duct tape, twine, bungee cords and basic tools so that you can manage minor repairs on the road.

Your car owners manual is actually a valuable guide to the workings of your car. That means that you should not trash it as soon as you leave the dealer. It can tell you everything from what that light on your dash means, to how to perform basic maintenance on your particular model.

Watch out for obvious warning signs that a repair person is not up to snuff. Someone who gives vague answers to direct questions, or ignores them altogether, may not have the necessary knowledge to give you quality service. Since it is important to trust the person who is repairing your car, don’t hesitate to look elsewhere for a person to repair your vehicle.

You should check the tire pressure when you go to the gas station. Check for foreign debris that may be embedded in your tires too. If you spot an issue, don’t put off getting it repaired. You should not risk driving with less-than-perfect tires.

Always ask in advance how much labor costs at that particular shop. In fact, do not give them your keys until you have a clear understanding of what you will be charged. Many times, this information is not posted in an obvious place, so it is important to know what you are getting yourself into.

If you are paying to have new parts installed in your car, ask the mechanic if you can see them. There is no reason why he should refuse to let you see what you have paid for. If you have any indication that the items are not new, tell the mechanic that you will be getting the work done elsewhere.

Some shops replace your tired with even older ones. Do not let the auto shop you go to trick you. Marking your tires with chalk before taking the tires to be rotated is a good idea. If the chalk isn’t there, you’ve been taken advantage of.

D not fall for the “free oil change” trick. This is just a way for someone to convince you that unnecessary things need to be done to your vehicle. Most of the time, low-quality oil is used and it is not good for your car. Stick with using the type of oil the manufacturer recommends.

Keep detailed records of all the repairs you did on your vehicle and ask the previous owners if they can provide you with their records. If you need to have a mechanic diagnose a problem, show them your records. Your mechanic will recognize recurring issues and know not to waste time on parts that have been replaced recently.

When you take your car to an auto repair shop, try to have a good description of the problem. Just telling the mechanic the car is screwed up won’t help him or her to solve the problem. Provide details. You should know how long the problem has existed and when it occurs. Note whether or not dashboard warning lights are illuminated. Describe any sounds, smells or vibrations that accompany the problem.

If your key “sticks” when you put it in the ignition, you will most likely need a new ignition switch as soon as possible. Having your key stick usually indicates that the switch is failing. If that switch is not fixed in a timely fashion, you could get stranded somewhere.

As you understand more fully now, you do not need to be afraid of handing over the keys to your car to a good mechanic. They are trained to trouble-shoot problems and offer solutions. Find the mechanic that you trust, then let him do his job in a professional manner.

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