If you don’t know anything about basic car care and maintenance you can end up unnecessarily wasting a lot of money on repair costs. There is more you can do besides being familiar with the make and model of your car. Keep reading to save money and time on auto repairs.
When choosing a mechanic, ask if they’ve worked on your model of car before. If they have, there is a better chance they can help resolve any issues you have.
Never underestimate how important it is to carrying an emergency kit inside your vehicle. You need tools to change a flat tire, charge a battery, and you must have spare gas. Also pack a few blankets, some batteries, and a good flashlight.
The best way to find a good auto mechanic is getting referrals. Talk to your relatives, friends and co-workers to get some recommendations. Ask them how good the work was, how much they were charged, and if they were satisfied. You’ll get a real feel for the experience and the honesty of the mechanic.
Take out all of the valuable items in your car when it is being repaired. The mechanic might have to remove certain items, and they won’t be liable if it goes missing. Take everything out of the trunk as well.
If you have issues with your car, you can fix it yourself. There are many things you can fix easily. If you want to take a chance, you can go online and do some research to pinpoint what the problem is. If it’s not hard to fix, try it yourself.
Always try to figure out the problem with your car before you bring it in for repairs. You will not be duped, and you can save tons of money when you find out the problem yourself. You probably already know that certain mechanics will come with lies to charge more money.
Invest in a spare tire and a jack, and keep them in your vehicle. Typically, if you have recently purchased a car, you should have these items already. You do not want to stuck in the middle of nowhere and have to pay a ton of money for a tow. You can save a lot by doing it yourself.
A record of maintenance and repairs should be in your car. These should be kept in the glove compartment of your vehicle for easy access out on the road. The auto mechanic can look at the records. They aid in speeding up the diagnosing process.
Don’t forget about wiper blades. You may need new blades if they are streaking or making noises. Wiper blades should be replaced at a minimum of once per year, or more than that if you reside in a particularly wet climate.
If your headlights look dimmer than they used to, be sure they’re clean. Sometimes, dirt from the road transfers over to your lights dim them. Clean your car’s headlights and taillights with a glass cleaner.
A mechanic who has his own shop is worth considering. There are many mechanics who work from home who do excellent work and cost less to do the job. This can save you a lot of money, and at the same time, help out a small auto shop instead of letting a big shop profit.
Be sure you know how often the oil needs changing. This will ensure that your car is running at its optimum performance. If you don’t get an oil change then your vehicle’s life could be shorter so you have to be sure to remind yourself.
Has your mechanic worked on your model of vehicle before? While all cars have the same basic components, there are big differences as to how they are attached and located under the hood. If you don’t know, make sure you go to the dealer and pay them the extra money.
Keep in mind that you don’t need the dealer for auto repairs. There are many technicians that may be closer in proximity to your house. If you find one you like, you should hire him.
Take photos of your vehicle prior to bringing it into any shop. While many shops won’t strip your car, some will in order to make more money. You need to be able to document the original damages done to your vehicle in case your mechanic fails to fix them or makes things worse.
If you notice your vehicle’s headlights or taillights have blown out, then it is possible to repair these issues yourself rather than visiting a mechanic in order to save money. In some vehicles, this repair is easier than in others. But, if you can do it yourself, you will save money. See if you can get instructions from someone you trust.
When you have a problem with your car that seems to be a minor issue, more times than not, it’s a wise choice to get it checked out by a professional. A small problem can become a big one if it is left unchecked.
If you are short on cash and need some auto repairs, you should think about going to the car repair department of a vocational school near you. Students can do car repairs under the guidance of their licensed mechanic/instructor, and you can save a lot money having your car fixed there.
Before giving your car to a shop, ask them about their fees. Some fees may not be readily apparent, so make sure you know exactly what they are. You should understand how you are billed by your mechanic. Are the repair times established? Some “Minor” repairs could take all day if they go by those manufacturers’ established times.
Not many people invest the time in reading their car’s owner manual. Go over this manual and mark the important pages that deal with information on maintaining your vehicle. You can learn a lot about preventative maintenance and small repairs in your manual.
As discussed above, learning a few things about auto repair can help you fix small problems yourself and save a lot of money. Not only will you be able to pass along the knowledge that you learned, but you will be able to rely on yourself the next time you have automotive problems. Keep these tips in mind; you may even be able to do minor repairs on your own.
There is no real benefit to getting repairs done at the dealer. There are independent mechanics all over the place. Consider using one if they appear to be good.