Archive for the ‘Auto Repair’ Category

What Everyone Should Know About Auto Repair

Has your car broken down recently? If so, you are probably in need of some repair. Depending on your problem however, it may be in your best interest to tackle the problem yourself. The following article will teach you everything you need to know about making your own auto repairs.

Do you have a hard time starting your car? Your battery probably needs to be recharged or replaced. You need to check the state of charge of your battery. You can use a hydrometer or a voltmeter depending on the type of battery you have. If you have been regularly recharging your battery, it might be time for a new one.

Always have a good battery charger in your car. Having a dead battery can leave you stranded in some pretty terrible places. Learn to locate the points where you should connect the battery charger on your car.

Be sure to read your owner’s manual to find out what kinds of fluids (oil, brake fluid, transmission fluid, steering fluid) your car needs and to learn how to check and top these off yourself. Keep a few bottles of each fluid in the trunk of your car in case of emergencies.

Don’t neglect your regular maintenance. These scheduled visits are not there just to get more money from you. They are designed to make sure maintenance is done on specific components before you end up stranded on the side of the road. While you might be able to skip one or two and be okay, the damage will shorten the life of your car.

Do not assume you have been ripped-off by your mechanic because of the high price of your bill. Some parts are very expensive to replace, including engines, transmission systems or dashboard computers. You should ask your mechanic about the cost of the parts he had to put in your car.

If you need to get your car fixed after an accident, you should contact your insurance to get a list of approved mechanics. Going to an approved mechanic means your insurance will cover some of your expenses. Besides, you are more likely to find a good certified mechanic if you go to a professional chosen by your insurance company.

Don’t leave anything of value in your car when it’s being repaired. Some of these items may need to be removed so the mechanic can do his work, and the shop is not responsible if anything is lost. Take all items out of your trunk, too.

Save some money by using your local auto parts store’s diagnostic equiptment. Many are more than happy to let their customers use it because you may then purchase parts at their store. You benefit because you may have a small problem you can fix or you can just tell your mechanic what you want done.

Do not forget that fixing your car yourself comes with some dangers. Work with someone nearby if you do plan to work on your car. Buy tools that are of a good quality so they’re not going to break when you use them. In particular, only use the best equipment for changing tires. Also, buy a strong jack in case you need to prop your car up in an emergency. A hydraulic floor jack featuring approved stands is best for these situations.

Don’t be afraid of looking silly when you take your car into a shop. Ask plenty of questions. Make sure you know what is going on. You deserve to understand what is happening with your car, and a good technician will not mind your questions. The knowledge may come in handy in the future.

Remember, you are owed an estimate before any work occurs on your car. If you did not receive an estimate and work did begin, do not feel obligated to move forward with any sort of payment. Move onto a more reputable auto shop as soon as possible if this occurs.

Always ask for an estimate in writing before you agree to have any work done. This way, if the shop tries to charge you more later you will have the estimate to prove what you had agreed on. Some shops do this on a regular basis, so be sure to protect yourself by getting it in writing.

You should be consistent with where you get your car repaired. Try not to jump around to different mechanics every time something is wrong. Not all shops will give your car the same diagnosis for it’s problems. Also, you will see that different shops will charge different rates.

Top mechanics advise that you look for a mechanic who displays an honest demeanor. They say that, in addition to good BBB ratings and proper licensing and certification, a good mechanic is simply “up-front”. Mechanics who avoid eye contact, don’t give straight answers and disregard your concerns should be avoided.

If you are pleased with the results that an auto repair shop brings your vehicle, make sure you go there again. A good relationship with a mechanic can be a great way to make sure the work done for you is excellent. Being a loyal customer may also get you discounts.

Making repairs on your car yourself can be a bit nerve wracking, especially if you have never done it before. However, if you apply the tips mentioned in the article above, there is no reason why you won’t be successful. Not only will it feel great to do it yourself, but you’ll save lots of money too!

Top Auto Repair Tips Straight From The Experts

There isn’t any kind of instinctive guide with regard to auto repair. Instead, it is necessary to learn how to care for your expensive investment. Getting repairs done can be nerve-wracking, with how important your car is. That said, you’ll do better using these great tips.

When you are in need of an auto repair, shop around to make sure that you get the best deal. Go to at least three different repair shops to get a quote. If anyone charges something that is unrealistically low or high, you should seek someone else to do the job.

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.

Keep your car’s owner manual handy. Knowing vital car information can really help when something unexpected occurs. If you know your car’s controls, you may even avoid a trip to a mechanic. If you do need a mechanic, you should have the make, model, and trim level available so that they can figure out things like your transmission configuration, size, etc. much quicker.

Do you know the signs of a low quality mechanic? If they give you the runaround or ignore any questions, you may not want them. If your gut feeling is that you don’t quite trust your mechanic, keep looking for one who inspires confidence in you and helps you understand the problems with your car.

Always get a second opinion, a reputable mechanic will not be offended because he knows his diagnosis will be confirmed. Even though mechanics are trustworthy in general, you could still wind up paying for more than you should. Find a shop that specializes in your particular make of car. These repair shops are better equipped to understand and repair any problem your car has.

Always keep some tail light tape around. You could get pulled over and get a ticket for a broken tail light. You should remove the light from your vehicle, replace the light-bulb if you need to and wrap the whole light in tape. This is a temporary fix but it is better than driving with a broken light.

Learn how to be preventative in terms of auto repair. You can do things that will help curb any future issues from happening! A big one is to follow the recommended tune-up schedule for your vehicle. As each car is different, you’ll want to look up in your manual what schedule is best for you.

If your car needs body work, make sure you know what color paint you have on your vehicle. This information is important for the technician that works on your car. Also, your vehicle identification number is always something good to have on hand. In many cases, you will have to have it just to set up an appointment.

Stick with Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) components. If your car needs parts, choose OEM parts over generic ones. For optimum performance, you should have the OEM parts that are up to the manufacturer’s standards. While generic parts are cheaper, they’re generally a lower quality than the original ones. This means that you may pay more later for replacements.

Pay attention to any fluids that pool under you car when parked. Small spots may not mean very much, but take note of what the fluid is. Plain water is usually just condensation that builds up on a car naturally. But bright green or orange fluid is the cooling system. Oily fluids are those like engine oil, or transmission fluid. These are warning signs.

Be wary of auto repair shops that try to pressure you into getting repairs done. You may go into a shop for one thing, and the mechanic will tell you that you have other problems. It’s fine if a mechanic informs you of any possible work that may need to be done, but when they try to turn it into a requirement, rather than an option, it’s time to find a new mechanic.

Know what your manufacturer recommends for your car. If you take your vehicle in to get fixed, and you receive contradictory information, go somewhere else. You can also call the technician on the discrepancy. Ask them why they are saying something different than the manufacturer. There could be a good reason, or they could be simply trying to talk around you.

If you are looking to extend your car’s life, do not accelerate too quickly immediately after starting it up. Especially in cold weather, racing the engine of your car will result in it deteriorating more quickly and contributing to accelerated wear and tear. Rather, accelerate slowly when you begin to drive.

When you take your car in for repairs, you should place a monetary limit on how much work may be done. If you drop the car off for an assessment, don’t allow them to make repairs without consulting you. Set a dollar amount that cannot be surpassed without an authorization from you.

How do you like your chances of having a better experience next time your car needs to be fixed. Although nobody loves getting their car fixed, you’ll find that the process doesn’t have to be a painful ordeal. Use what you have learned here and take command the next time your vehicle needs to be repaired.

Things You Should Know About Car Repair

Power your way to better decisions regarding auto repair by continuing to read this article. There is no sense in struggling through these times, not knowing if you’re getting a good deal or even handling the problem correctly. Instead, you should feel empowered, and this information is definitely going to make you feel that way.

Check the transmission fluid every two to three months. Let your engine run and open the hood of your car. Use the transmission dipstick to check the fluid levels. If there is not enough fluid in your transmission you probably have a leak somewhere in your system. It is best to take the car to a mechanic so he can locate the leak.

Keep your car’s owner manual handy. Knowing vital car information can really help when something unexpected occurs. If you know your car’s controls, you may even avoid a trip to a mechanic. If you do need a mechanic, you should have the make, model, and trim level available so that they can figure out things like your transmission configuration, size, etc. much quicker.

If you take your car to a mechanic, make sure they have the proper licenses and credentials. Before making your appointment, check their reviews online and their standing with the Better Business Bureau. Don’t just look at the positive reviews, but see how the company responds to negative feedback. Every business has the occasional problem, and if they handle the matter quickly and courteously, they may be worth a second look.

Make sure your auto technician is qualified to work on your specific car. Motor vehicles are complex machines and each brand has unique characteristics. Some brands require special tools, parts, and procedures. Many standard auto technicians either lack these items or don;t have them easily available. Without these items, they can’t fix your vehicle.

Always exercise the highest level of caution when working with your car’s fuel system. Never work around fuel tanks, fuel lines or pumps with sources of ignition such as cigarettes or anything that could produce a spark. Wipe up any fuel spills immediately, and protect yourself by wearing fuel-resistant gloves and eyewear.

A dent or scratch in a plastic bumper is very easy to fix. Start by cutting the bits that stick out from the dent until the edges are smooth. You can then use a filler to make the dent disappear. Sand over the area and paint to hide the repair.

Look for a good auto repair shop before you actually need auto repairs. This is all about being proactive. When you need them, it’s a major annoyance to have to spend a ton of time searching. It leads to you making poor choices due to the bad situation you’re already in. By choosing a repair shop prior, you can seriously consider your options.

Before you pay the bill for any larger auto repair work, give your car a test drive. You want to make sure that the repairs were done to your satisfaction. If you haven’t paid, it makes it much easier to talk about any lingering issues that may still be around that need further fixing.

You should always pay attention to the way your car smells. An unpleasant smell is usually caused by a leak or an electrical short. It is best not to drive your car and find a mechanic who can come inspect it to determine what is causing the strong smell.

You do not need to purchase a new filter every time you go in to have an oil change. The auto repair person may show you a worn filter next to a new one and claim it is yours, but be firm and let them know that you do not need a new one right now.

Ask about the warranties associated with any new parts going into your car. Most new parts will include a warranty. If something goes wrong with that part after the repair, you’ll be covered for the replacement. Know how long the warranty is good for and if there are any stipulations tied to it.

Original Equipment Manufacturer is a label you will find on parts issues or approved by manufacturers. Know this if you’re taking a vehicle in to get repairs done to it. When you tell your mechanic that OEM parts are what you want, you sound like you have some knowledge. As a result, the mechanic will be less likely to take advantage of you.

If you are taking your car to the repair shop for service, be sure you know how they charge for the work being done. Many shops charge a flat rate for most jobs, but others charge based on the amount of time it takes to complete a repair. While both methods can be quite legitimate, it is useful to know which approach your shop is using to help you anticipate final costs.

When you purchase certain items at auto parts stores, they will install them for free. Keep this in mind when you go and pick them up. For example, a new set of windshield wipers is around five dollars. An auto parts store will usually install them for you for free, while an auto body shop will charge you around $50.

Have you ever wanted to just magically tap your shoes together and go home when something happens to your car? Don’t crawl into the fetal position, but instead take control of the situation using the tips that you’ve read here. There is no reason to be scared away from taking care of your own when it comes to your mode of transportation.

The Best Tips To Use To Repair Your Car

When most people think of auto repair, they imagine a shady mechanic looking at their vehicles and charging extra for parts and repairs. This is only one of the possible experiences one can have with auto repair. The included advice will show you how to get good auto repair from a mechanic.

Don’t neglect your regular maintenance. These scheduled visits are not there just to get more money from you. They are designed to make sure maintenance is done on specific components before you end up stranded on the side of the road. While you might be able to skip one or two and be okay, the damage will shorten the life of your car.

Communicate with your mechanic as much as possible. Explain the issues you have been encountering with your car and do not hesitate to ask questions to your mechanic if you do not fully understand the repairs that are needed. Ask about prices and do not let your mechanic fix your car until you fully understand charges.

Educate yourself on your car’s manual and bookmark important pages. When you visit a car shop, mechanics will need to know particular information about your car. The manual may give you information to help you easily fix a problem.

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.

Keep your car’s owner manual handy. Knowing vital car information can really help when something unexpected occurs. If you know your car’s controls, you may even avoid a trip to a mechanic. If you do need a mechanic, you should have the make, model, and trim level available so that they can figure out things like your transmission configuration, size, etc. much quicker.

If you’re performing your own repairs underneath a car and have it raised in the air, ensure that the lifting device you use is secure. Never lift a car that is not on level ground or on a firm surface. Always use jackstands in the proper position and never solely rely on a jack to keep a car raised off the ground.

There are many “backyard” mechanics out there that preform excellent auto repairs. If they’re experienced then they probably can do quality work and they don’t charge a lot either. This may result in substantial savings, and you can also provide such mechanics with much-needed work.

Keep track of how often you need to change your oil. If you want your car to run the way it should, its oil needs to be changed regularly. It can vary a bit between different vehicles and cars go much longer between oil changes than they used to. But you must do them when recommended.

Understand the billing process at the auto repair shop you go to. In many cases, you could get a bill for labor based on how long the manufacturer thinks it will take to repair your car. Be clear about how it works at whatever shop you take your car to.

There is nothing routine about flushing your engine. This service is very expensive and it isn’t necessary unless you have neglected engine care for some time.

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.

Trust your gut feeling when dealing with a mechanic. If the person you are talking to does not really answer to your questions or seems to be vague on purpose, you need to keep looking. A good mechanic should put you at ease and give you plenty of details on the work that needs to be done.

When looking for a repair shop or a garage, pay attention to the documents on the walls. Certified mechanics usually have the original copy of their certification framed on the wall. You should look for certifications issued by your state or by the ASE as well as proofs of insurance.

Request that the shop doing your auto repairs only use original equipment manufacturer, or O.E.M., parts. The additional cost compared to generic components is worth the investment in the long run. You can expect optimal performance and increased vehicle longevity when you choose parts specifically made for your car rather than generic.

Don’t let your trip to the mechanic turn into a bad experience. Your car’s life is on the line, so why not do everything you can to make sure it survives? The only way to do this, is to use the above advice. You’ll get the best mechanic and the best auto repair service possible.

The Best Auto Repair Advice You Can Find

If you own a car, you probably have had to get it repaired at one point or another. This is just something that every car owner has to deal with. Finding a reputable auto repair service can be extremely frustrating. Luckily, the following article will show you how to choose a reliable company that you can count on.

When taking your car to the mechanic’s, you should not leave before having a complete diagnosis of what needs to be fixed. If the mechanic refuses to look at the car right away or does not want to give you a quote for the issues he diagnosed, find someone else.

Look for an auto repair shop that displays their certifications for everyone to see. Get a good look at it to make sure that they are current. Even if they are certified, that does not guarantee quality work, but there is a greater chance of the work getting done correctly.

If you have doubts about the work of a mechanic or their diagnosis, ask if you can see the old damaged parts. A good mechanic will show you the part and point out the issues. If a mechanic cannot show you the old damaged parts, you need to check your car to make sure the mechanic actually put some new parts in.

When you are going to get your car repaired at a shop, ask the technician what type of parts they plan to use to get the job done. Many places use refurbished parts, but they would be willing to use new parts if you wanted to pay the extra money.

If you are having work done on your car, make sure you get a written estimate beforehand. The estimate should include what is being repaired, the parts that will be needed and the anticipated cost for labor. It should also say that they will call for your approval before doing any additional work which exceeds the amount or time specified.

Keep accurate records on what work has been done on your car and when. Many repair shops will keep this information for you, but that only works if you see them for everything for major breakdowns to oil changes. This can help in diagnosing problems, as you can show what fixes have already been attempted.

Never attempt to diagnose complicated car problems on your own. You aren’t an expert! A minor issue can spiral into a huge dilemma. Let repair shops diagnose your vehicle. Provide them with every detail of what happened and what was heard, but let them provide the final diagnosis.

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.

Pick up a book on simple auto repairs. You may find that some smaller repairs you can do at home, especially if you are mechanically inclined. Though, don’t go crazy! If it’s an advanced issue, get your car to a legitimate repair shop as soon as you can. Don’t make the problem worse with a shoddy repair job.

Be wary of auto repair shops that try to pressure you into getting repairs done. You may go into a shop for one thing, and the mechanic will tell you that you have other problems. It’s fine if a mechanic informs you of any possible work that may need to be done, but when they try to turn it into a requirement, rather than an option, it’s time to find a new mechanic.

Make sure your car is ready for winter. The cold can be very hard on the vehicle’s system so you should properly maintain it. Some things you should do are check the tires, check the antifreeze, replace old wipers, and inspect windshield washer fluid. Driving is hard enough in the winter, so make things easier by making sure your vehicle can handle the harsher weather conditions.

Find out how often you should perform a tune up on your vehicle. You should find this information in your owner’s manual. You have probably heard that you need to tune up your vehicle every 100,000 miles but this really depends on the make an model of the vehicle you have.

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 are taking your car to the repair shop for service, be sure you know how they charge for the work being done. Many shops charge a flat rate for most jobs, but others charge based on the amount of time it takes to complete a repair. While both methods can be quite legitimate, it is useful to know which approach your shop is using to help you anticipate final costs.

As was mentioned earlier in this article, everyone has to have their car repaired every once in awhile. Be sure and implement the advice mentioned above the next time you need your car worked on. When you choose a reputable company, you not only save money and time, but you also reduce the stress involved with the entire process.