If for some reason you require the services of an auto body shop. There are quite a few things that you need to watch out for. If you are new to auto repairs, it is a good idea to be readily armed with lots of information before you have your vehicle repaired. Its fine to be a noob, but its not fine to be totally ignorant. Remember that the automotive repair industry is a multi-million dollar business in the United States. If you dont do your homework before visiting the auto body shop, you might just find yourself paying for more than you bargained for.
Know What You Need
This is very important. Weve already mentioned avoiding paying for more than you bargained for. Well, it all starts with knowing what you need. For example, if you are checking your vehicle into an auto body shop for a new paint job, then this is exactly what you should be focusing on. Remember that the auto repair industry is a business. Therefore, the customer service representatives, mechanics and/or technicians handling your car will definitely try some marketing tactics on you. This is known as maximizing profits.
So if they start offering you a different kind of service than you came in for, its fine to entertain these offers. Some of them might even be good deals, but just remember what you actually came in for.
Always Ask For Certifications
The mechanic handling your vehicle must be a certified professional. In fact, in the automotive world, there are qualifications for specific automotive tasks. Ask what kind of repairable vehicles the mechanic handling your car is actually certified to repair. Also, dont be afraid to ask him what is specialty is and what kind of specialized tasks he is actually rated to perform.
Be A Supervisor
While you may encounter the occasional headstrong auto repair technician, do not cave in. There are some mechanics who want to impose their will upon what kind of repairs and adjustments should be made on your car. This goes back to the first tip of knowing what you want. For example, if there is a weird screeching sound in your car every time you take a turn, the auto repairman should focus on getting rid of this screeching sound. Do not leave the auto repair shop without the problem being fixed or at least addressed.
Ask questions every step of the way even if you are not mechanically inclined. Any mechanic worth his salt should be able to explain what he plans to do to your car in laymans terms.
The Owners Manual Is Your Bible
Do not be afraid to dog-ear and damage your owners manual. Remember the saying that books do not grow old without use. Well, your owners manual should be well-worn because you have actually read it. Its fine if you dont know the specifics of everything listed out, but you should at least try to understand as much as you can. For example, basics such as the meaning of the lights on your dashboard and how to check your fluid levels correctly should be common knowledge to any car owner.