If you want to learn how to take care of your car, sometimes the best solution is to talk to a professional. Rather than damaging your car through fixing it yourself, learn how to call upon a reliable mechanic. Read this article for tips on how to do just that.
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.
Purchase motor oil on sale and in discount stores and keep two or three bottles in the trunk of your car. Check your oil every time you fill your gas tank. If you find that your oil level is low, you will save lots of money by having your own oil on hand rather than purchasing it at a gas station for inflated prices.
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.
Getting a good referral is the ideal way to discover a great auto technician. Get recommendations from family and friends. This gives you the opportunity to find out about costs and the overall quality you can expect. They will be the first to tell you about a dishonest mechanic too!
Look up reviews online for body shops in your area. This is a good way of getting an idea on what other customers think of the mechanic's skills and customer service. You can then use that information to pick a shop that you can feel comfortable giving your money to.
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.
Consider investing in a service contract. Getting a service contract is similar to insuring your vehicle; you will pay a monthly fee to keep your contract valid and the company that issues the contract will cover needed repairs. Choose your contract carefully and find a contract that covers things you will actually need.
If you are repairing your vehicle at home you must be sure to put everything that you take off of the vehicle in one safe place. One of the biggest problems that people run into is they lose a part from their car and can not put everything back together. Do not let this happen to you.
Don't let a mechanic talk you into getting your car's engine flushed when it doesn't need it. This service is expensive, and unless you've failed to change the oil on time regularly or something similar, you are not in need of this service.
If you need to get your vehicle fixed, choose a garage or a dealership that hires certified technicians. The person who runs the place might have a certification but this does not mean that certified people will work on your car. Choosing certified technicians is a good way of making sure qualified people are fixing your car.
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.
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.
If your car overheats on the highway, move to the side and turn off your engine as soon as you can. Don't try checking on any liquids as they can burn you if you aren't sure what you are doing. Rather, call a tow truck immediately to get you to your auto repair shop.
Don't ignore a "Check Engine" light. Many people think it's ok since they continue to run their car with no obvious issues. But a check engine light would have never appeared unless some internal check failed. It's best to get it looked into immediately, or you run the risk of a larger problem down the road.
When you have work done at an auto body shop you should always ask them to provide you with the parts that were replaced on your vehicle. This is important because some shops will claim that they fixed things that they did not, but if you have the old parts in hand, you know exactly what was removed.
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.
When your car is being worked on, it may be a good idea to set a limit to how much work can be done before getting authorization from you. Never let the repairs go ahead without your approval. Establish a set amount which cannot be surpassed without your authorization.
A mechanic can be your best friend if your car is acting up and you are not sure how to fix it yourself. The tips in this article should have given you some guidance on this matter. Remember them the next time you find yourself in need of auto repair!