Auto Repair Shops and Mechanics
Unless you rely solely on public transportation to get around, the chances are pretty good that you regularly need the service of quality auto repair shops and mechanics to keep your vehicle running smoothly. Whether you are looking for preventative maintenance (like oil changes and AC repair) or more serious repairs (like strut replacement) finding the right mechanic is never easy. Here are a few tips to help you locate an auto repair shop that will serve you, and your car, well.
Do Your Research
The best way to find the perfect match among all the auto repair shops and mechanics out there is to get a recommendation from someone you trust. If a close friend or family member has been bringing their cars to the same guy for years, they probably have a good reason.
Hop on Facebook or your favorite social media channel and ask around. Your friend’s list should provide you with a good place to get started. From there, you can start reading about other people’s experiences with the car shops in question. Read online reviews for your candidates from sites like Yelp and Angie’s List. Beware of red flags, such as customers who felt scammed or repeated horror stories about incomplete repairs.
Remember also, though, that one or two bad reviews could just be flukes. Every business has a bad day, and some customers only ever have negative things to say.
Clear the Credentials
Once you’ve whittled down your list of auto repair shops and mechanics a bit, you should check in on how well trained and certified the guys who will actually be working on your car are. The best of the best receive the title of Master Technician from the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). These experts have completed all eight ASE certification exams and are about the most knowledgeable mechanics you can find. If a mechanic isn’t a Master Technician, you should at least make sure they have completed some of the ASE certifications.
Ask your final candidates about their insurance policies. The most professional auto repair shops and mechanics will carry a business owner’s policy, workers’ compensation policy, and general liability insurance. Not only will this coverage protect your vehicle in case of a mishap, but it is also a good sign of a business-minded mechanic. Workers compensation insurance, for example, proves that the owner is willing to invest in the financial security of his employees and is thus more invested in treating every customer with the care they need.
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