Every car owner knows the stress and daunting nature of car repairs. The main source of fear comes with the price. The anxiety about mechanics overcharging, and creating extra car problems, makes everyone wary about visiting an auto shop. Develop a game plan to budget and avoid repair stress.
Here are five practical tips that decrease your car repair worries:
Save for Repairs
The first step is to save enough money to cover all expenses. Underestimating your car repairs leads to an additional layer of stress, which is why you need your initial main focus to be on saving enough, and then you can enter a repair shop with more confidence.
Conduct a thorough internet search to get an estimate of your repairs. Repair Pal helps you with this task: Just enter the year, model, make, and type of repairs needed, and then wait for a quote. We recommend adding at least an additional 30 percent more to your initial estimate. Save more than needed to cover extra expenses.
If you have time and resources, find a passive source of income to help you make the car repair money faster. Consider selling stuff online or starting an online business based on your favorite hobby. If you know how to sew, you can sell things like customizable hats and gloves.
Make cutbacks. Instead of paying full retail price for a nice pair of Allen Edmonds shoes, use a coupon to reduce your bill. Swap name brand food products with their store brand equivalent. Stop buying books and use the library more often. These are just a few of the many small cutbacks to make to reach your savings goals faster.
Pick the Mechanic
Mechanics reward loyalty, so stick with ones that you trust. You already know their work ethic and general pricing. Additionally, mechanics often offer special discounts to customers who visit them frequently.
If you’re in the market for a new mechanic, start the search by looking for ones that are ASE certified. Next, start generating a list of recommended auto repair shops. Visit automobile forums and read YELP reviews. Both sites will give you an overview of local mechanics’ general professionalism and quality of service.
Also get recommendations from friends, family, and neighbors. Once you narrow down your list, visit a select few shops in person. Seeing how they work and operate clarifies your view of their practice, which lets you know whether you want to do business with them. Pay close attention to how the staff treats you, the cleanliness of the shop, especially the work area, and their customer flow.
Get a Quote
After narrowing your search to a few mechanics, get a quote. Educate yourself on cars before discussing repairs. This helps you give a better description of your car troubles, and then a mechanic can diagnose the issue better. It also allows you to see when he is trying to overcharge for unnecessary repairs. One Main Financial recommends Using
How a Car Works and Auto Education for a crash course on automobiles.
Get a confirmation that buying your own parts is allowed. Many mechanics will only let you buy from them. If allowed, search online and local auto parts shops for best deals. Review warranty policies from the places that you purchase the parts and from the mechanics.