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Be Sure You Make Wise Auto Repair Decisions

One of the most panic-inducing things to have happen is to break down on the side of the road. Besides the immediate dangers of being stranded on the roadside, you are also facing the problem of hiring a mechanic in a hurry. Unfortunately, finding the right mechanic is not easy. Use the following tips to find the right auto repair service.

Consider keeping a high quality battery charger in your car. The problem of a low or dead battery is very common, and if you keep a charger in your car you can assist other drivers with the problem. Familiarize yourself with how the charger hooks up to your battery.

Check your radiator frequently. Start your car, wait a few minutes and shut it off so you can safely inspect the radiator. Never open the radiator while the car is on. Look to see what the fluid level is (use a dipstick), and remember that coolant needs to have a bit of water added prior to entering your radiator.

Don’t take an emergency car kit for granted. You need tools to change a flat tire, charge a battery, and you must have spare gas. Should your car break down in the dark, it is helpful to have extra batteries, a flashlight, and some blankets.

Do not hire a mechanic until you are sure they have experience with this particular make and model. If they have worked on the same type vehicle you have, they will know which areas to check first on your car.

Ask a potential mechanic if they have experience with working on the exact kind of car you have. A mechanic who has experience with the make and model you are driving will be able to diagnose issues quickly.

Always keep records each time your car is repaired. This will help the technician when you get future repairs on your car. No records means a blank slate to go on.

Your car should be washed regularly so that rust doesn’t become a problem. All cars will rust up eventually, but you may delay it considerably by ensuring all chemicals and salts are washed off quickly. A good wax is your best friend: a friend that will protect that shiny new paint job for a long time.

Test your car out after a repair has been done by a mechanic. Make sure it is operating correctly before full payment is made. Many people fail to do this and they end up having the same problem that they had before taking the car in to get it repaired.

Before taking your vehicle to an auto repair shop, check out their online reviews. These reviews can give you a good idea of the satisfaction that the customers had. You can use the information to find a place you’ll feel comfortable spending your money at.

Be careful of mechanics who will do unnecessary work on your vehicle. A reliable mechanic will tell you if any parts are worn down and need replacing. But, they should ask for your approval before replacing them. Don’t return to mechanics that do unnecessary repairs.

If you think your headlines are not as bright as usual, inspect them for cleanliness. Headlights often accumulate grime and other debris during normal use. Be sure to clean them with a strong glass solvent in order to get the best light possible.

Take out all of the valuable items in your car when it is being repaired. Mechanics may need to take these items out to do the work and they aren’t responsible if you discover something missing. Remove all items from the trunk too.

You may not be a mechanic, but your trunk should always have a spare tire and a jack at the very least. Most vehicles come with them, but you want to check anyway. You never want to be without them, as you could end up having to pay for an expensive tow. It’s far more convenient and less costly to take care of it yourself.

Look for signs that should serve as a warning that your repair man is no good. When they don’t listen to what you say or talk to you in circles, they’re probably a scammer. It is good to feel like you trust your mechanic, so move on if you don’t feel like you can.

Keep a DIY tool kit in your trunk. You need to include a complete tire changing kit. A lug wrench and a jack are essential. A Philips head as well as flat head screwdriver should be helpful, plus socket and adjustable wrenches. Do not waste money by getting cheap tools. Purchase solid tools that are resistant to breakage.

Make sure the mechanic can work on your particular car. Cars can differ significantly, even if the general mechanical principles are the same. A luxury SUV is quite different from a hybrid Prius, for example. If you don’t think the shop you are going to really knows what they are doing, take your car to the dealer instead.

When you need a major repair done, get numerous estimates. Most shops are reliable but some mechanics will find additional repairs to charge you more. Seek out good shops that that are reputable and familiar with your type of vehicle. Shops like this may understand your car’s needs better.

A spare tire and a jack are essential items to keep in your trunk. A lot of newer vehicles are already equipped with these things. You don’t need to be stuck somewhere you don’t know and need to pay a lot for towing. It’s cheaper to do on your own.

Also know that doing the auto repairs yourself can prove rather dangerous. Have someone assist you and make sure they are ready to react to emergencies. Only invest in the best tools available. This is particularly important for tools that you use to change your tires. Keep in mind that the jack you use needs to safely hold the car up, especially when you go under the car. Therefore, it is vital to purchase a hydraulic jack with strong stands.

Wiper Blades

Take photos of your vehicle prior to bringing it into any shop. This way if you suspect something has been removed without your approval, you have photographic proof. It is in your best interest to have documentation of your vehicle’s condition, just in case.

Do not neglect your wiper blades . If they’re not working properly of leave streaks, you might need new wipers. You should replace wiper blades at least once a year or more often if you live in an area where rain is commonplace or if you notice your wiper blades are worn out.

Warranties serve an important purpose when your car is repaired, especially when you buy expensive parts. Be sure and ask the mechanic what the warranty is on the parts that they have ordered. Have a version of this warranty printed up so you can keep it with your records.

Think about using a mechanic who fixes cars in his own garage. As long as he knows what he is doing, he can charge less for the same work. 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.

Give the brakes a bleed after you’ve done work on them. Then pump the brake pedal to distribute brake fluid. You are trying to find leaks in your device to make sure there are no problems. Now you can give the car a test drive when there is little traffic. Start out slowly to be certain you’ve made a good repair before risking higher speeds.

Selecting the right company to repair your car is often difficult. If you’re equipped with great information, however, it is quite a bit easier to do so. Knowing what to watch out for and which questions to ask gives you an advantage. Keep this information in mind, and use it whenever you experience car trouble.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions when you are speaking with a mechanic. Don’t just ask about price, ask everything you need to know about your repairs. Is there an estimate available for the amount of time that will be involved? What work will be done? What is the breakdown cost per part? Ask any other questions you can think of. This will show them that you know what you’re taking about and can also help you to know what to get done if this happens again to you.

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