When your vehicle breaks down, getting it running again should be your priority. It is hard to get around when you are stuck without a car. But, you may not need to spend lots of money to solve the problem. There are many basic repairs that you can do on your own.
Keep a good battery charger in your car. Dead batteries are a common problem, and you should always have a charger or cables on you at all times. Make sure you know how to connect the charger to your battery.
Make sure the repair shop technician is familiar with the particular model of your vehicle. If they have experience with your type of car, they are more likely able to correctly diagnose and fix the problems your vehicle is having.
Make sure you are receiving OEM parts. These parts are the genuine article, produced by your car's original manufacturer. Generic may be cheaper, but you don't know the quality of these parts as time goes on. You may save in the short term, but additional failures could end up costing you big time.
Ask for referrals to find a great mechanic. Get recommendations from family and friends. Ask about how much they paid, the quality of the repairs and the customer service. They will be the first to tell you about a dishonest mechanic too!
Be wary of unscrupulous mechanics who make unnecessary repairs to your vehicle. Work should never be performed without your permission, but a good mechanic may point out upcoming repairs that are necessary. Never give your repeat business to a auto technician who preforms unnecessary repairs.
Don't leave valuables in your car while you're having it repaired. The mechanic might need to clean out the car before performing repair work, and your personal items could be lost. Everything needs to be taken out of your trunk too.
You should check the tire pressure when you go to the gas station. Take a look at each tire and be sure they are free of any debris. If you see anything wrong with them, get the problem fixed right away. Driving on the highway with corrupt tires can be very dangerous.
Inquire about labor rates and overall cost before handing your keys to the mechanic. A lot of places will put rates in the fine print and so you need to read over any paperwork carefully. You must know what you're being billed. Some stores are able to give you an estimate for how long they'll keep your car. A lot of repairs that seem to be easy to fix could end up taking a whole day in some cases.
Keep an eye on all of the warning lights on your dashboard and know what they mean. These warning lights are meant to help alert you to potential problems. Yes, there are sometimes false positives, but it is risky to ignore these warning lights. If you do so, a problem can get worse and become more costly to fix.
Find out about all costs before hiring a mechanic. Some shops have these costs in conspicuous places, so you need to carefully read and ask any questions you have if something doesn't make sense. Make sure that you know exactly how you are going to be billed. They may be from a manual written by the car's manufacturer. A manufacturer may consider a relatively minor repair to be an all day job.
You can replace your oil or top up your windshield fluid on your own. You can do these routine maintenance jobs yourself. Mechanics aren't required. You must know how to do certain things, and then you can grease up those hands.
A dealer's mechanic is an expensive option, but it is sometimes necessary to go through your dealership. Service technicians at dealerships tend to specialize in your make and model. Therefore, they are able to pinpoint issues and resolve them very quickly. They are also trained in various programs they take part in regularly.
Original Equipment Manufacturer is usually abbreviated as OEM. This can be helpful if parts are being replaced on your car. If you walk in and tell the mechanic that you want OEM parts, you will sound knowledgeable. This will lower your chances of getting someone that places used components in your vehicle.
Keep track of all your vehicle repair and maintenance receipts in an accordion folder in your car. You can set your filing system any way you desire. Some people choose a chronological filing system while others may choose to divide them into the types of maintenance or repairs that were performed on the car. Either way, you will have a complete record of your car's maintenance that will be helpful to your mechanic when more repairs are needed and helpful to you if you are dissatisfied with a repair. This will be very valuable to keep in mind.
Learn about what makes your car function. If you understand how it works, you might not always need to pay for a mechanic to fix things. This saves tons of money over time.
Protect carpets in your car during winter time by putting down rubber mats. These mats shield the delicate interior from mud, salt, slush, and other gunk that trails inside. These are necessary during winter and rainy seasons.
Each time you wash the car, remove the car mats and shake them vigorously. Dirt gets trapped in the rubber, which can lead to tearing. These holes are unattractive and allow dirt to reach the carpet.
With these tips, you should be better equipped to handle any car repairs that creep up. The next time you find your car behaving strangely, you should have the knowledge you need to either fix the problem yourself or find the right professional for the job. This way, you can get back on the road quickly and easily.