What to Know About: Auto Damage »
When a car is damaged by an accident or weather, what can be repaired and what must be replaced? Or is it time to buy a new car?
San Luis Rey River TrailSan Luis Rey, CA 92068
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When a car is damaged by an accident or weather, what can be repaired and what must be replaced? Or is it time to buy a new car?
No matter whether an accident involved a freshly licensed teen or an experienced driver, knowing what to do (or not do) is essential to bouncing back.
All it takes is a little preparation to get your car winter-ready and to keep from getting into an icy situation.
Carlos used to be down on Miramar in San Diego, and is now in Escondido. I have used him as a mechanic for abt 10 years, for a variety of cars, and he now does my daughter's car as well. He is thorough and honest, and takes the time to explain what is wrong and why it matters. His costs are very reasonable -- especially b/c he does it right the first time. Carlos has sometimes had to give me very bad news -- and once in a case where another mechanic really screwed me (how Carlos won my business) and understands how it can be tough for a working person to deal with big bills. He will work with you, and can "prioritize" repairs to keep you rolling, but w/o making it more expensive down the road. Carlos is the owner and to me, that makes all the difference -- he has a long term view of your relationship and your vehicle. And as others have commented, he's a great "family man" and it shows in his ethics at work. His concern is for your safety and to have your car running right. He is also honest enough to tell you when he can't do a job (tranny rebuild). I work on cars myself (amateur) and I have friends who are good mechanics, and a son who is a good mechanic, so I know how hard it is to get a GOOD and HONEST mechanic. Use Carlos! You won't be sorry!
Brian, you are a wonderful mechanic, shop owner and a straight shooter! You don't keep our vehicles any longer than necessary and you are honest. What a breath of fresh air! I also researched your shop and you are registered with the BAR. I learned the hard way that there are actually shops out there that do not follow the laws and guidelines that keep consumers safe.We are so blessed to have found you as you do follow the laws. You call us if there is a problem and ask us what we want to do; you give us your professional opinion but leave the final decision to us. You do not oversell us on things we do not need...thank you thank you thank you!!!!!You have a professional and courteous staff. You go out of your way to help your customers. You have our loyalty.
We were vacationing in San Diego we ran into some car trouble. The service advisor was very polite and explained what the technician had found in a matter that was not over our heads. They had to replace the fuel pump and filter, when I called the dealer to get the same services quoted they were double what I was quoted at West Escondido Automotive. Our car was finished in a timely manner and the people there are great. They offered their shuttle service to us so we didn't have to wait in the customer lounge while they fixed our car. They mechanic even came out and explained to us what he had to do to get the job done. What a nice facility, easy freeway access and the staff there is great! Thanks to them we were able to continue our vacation and had no problems!
So far so good! I will update this post after repair work has been completed and final price for parts and labor are provided. So far, USA Complete Auto Repair and Smog has provided me the best estimate in North San Diego County! I very seldom do reviews, but after speaking with Tom, a day earlier on the phone to explain my repair issues, he gave a straight analysis of what everything would cost when I dropped car off the next day. The car is currently being worked on. If everything is as promised, I will sing the praises of USA Complete Auto Repair and Smog and recommend them to everyone I know--I already have a few colleagues waiting for my update!
I moved here a few months ago- and when my car broke down I was so nervous to take it to be fixed. I am so happy that I found Performance Auto Care.Their customer service is AMAZING! Their staff is knowledgeable and answered all of my questions before I gave them the keys. I had my car back in no time, spent less than I thought it would be, my car is working perfectly. I love this place and will definitely be back for oil changes and all of my car maintenance in the future. I can't say enough about how happy I am about this shop. I'm glad I listened to the referral.In a word they are Courteous, efficient, and professional, while providing outstanding work.
I brought my van in to Escondido Auto Pros (which is veteran owned by the way) for new brakes the other day and was really impressed with the detailed inspection report (with pictures) that they emailed me. The report outlined what repairs were critical, what could wait and what was in good shape. Their prices are very reasonable so i decided to have a couple of other repairs done while I was there. The staff were all friendly and helpful. The waiting room is comfortable with tv and coffee. They will even help you get to work while your car is being repaired! FYI-The shop is located in the back side of the building.
I've used Carlos as my family mechanic for over 8 yrs. Does good work at a fair price. I have had a half dozen or more different vehicles in with him (3 teenage drivers) and have never had to take a vehicle back for the same problem twice. He's always willing to explain exactly what the problem is and why. I only wish he had a bigger shop/more equipment and could do even a wider range of stuff. If you're tired of the big guys and always feeling like they're "finding" problems instead of fixing the ones you came in for, this is a good reliable shop
Brian and his entire staff gets five shiny stars in my book. Their professionalism and upbeat attitude radiates to all who walk in their shop. The service consultants, mechanics and courtesy drivers are all in the same page. They make every client feel important and puts a smile in their faces at the end of the day. When you run over a bump, Brian and his team will smooth things out for you that is fair for all. Take your vehicle to West Escondido Auto and feel the experience. They will take good care of you.
Newell was a great help. Saved me $1200 dollars in repairs! I brought my car in for a second opinion, a thumping noise in the front end. I was told it was probably the transmission from a former mechanic I have used for a long time. Turns out after test driving it Newell, the owner, found it to be my front TIRE!. What the heck??!! What a nice guy to take the time and he didn't even charge me anything. Thanks Newell for your honesty you saved me. :-)
I was referred to Carlos by a friend. I needed the clutch replaced - the dealer wanted $1100, but Carlos replaced the clutch and changed the oil/filter for less than $600. He serviced my car the next day, so there wasn't a long wait to get my car back. Carlos took the time to show me the old clutch and explain why it needed replaced. I would absolutely recommend Carlos to others, just as my friend did to me.
There are more than 700,000 auto service technicians and mechanics in the U.S. Finding the right one to repair a dent in your car door or fix an engine that won't start can be overwhelming, especially when it's an emergency. Review a few important facts about auto repair professionals and what you can do to get the best possible mechanic working on your vehicle's issues for a fair price.
Looking For Reliability
Unlike home repair services that evaluate a property, meet with homeowners and have time to prepare before their physical work begins, auto repair businesses are often asked to make fixes on the spot. If you come into a garage with a tire issue, the expectation is the mechanic will know how to correct that problem quickly.
That is why reliability is so vital when searching for a trusted auto repair shop. It may take going to several different mechanics before you find one you are truly comfortable with. Pose questions to this professional to find out what approach they will take to repair your car or what alternatives are available. Shopping around also gives you the best opportunity to find the cheapest rate or the fastest service, as some garages may be backed up with other vehicles that need repair first.
A recommended way to locate a trustworthy auto repair professional is to seek out customer reviews. Online sites offer honest opinions from real customers who have used a business. Read through this feedback to learn how a business operates and what you can expect if you were to take your vehicle there. Look for reviews about how quick maintenance was completed and if prices were fair. By learning what other people have said about a garage, you can gain a better idea if it's the right place to go when you have a car problem in need of fixing.
It can be difficult to know which automotive problems are serious enough to require expert assistance. A ripped seat cushion or broken radio don't involve safety and will not warrant enough of a problem that going into a garage is required. However, setbacks with brakes, lights and other parts that are vital to the safety of your car's driver and passengers, as well as others on the road, necessitate quick fixes. Many modern automobiles will notify drivers of an issue, in the form of a signal on the dashboard or a noise within the vehicle.
In the event of an accident, even if your vehicle does not appear to have any damage on the outside, it is generally recommended that you see a trusted auto repair professional. Internal damage may have occurred, or an important part may have been knocked out of place. Fixing these issues before driving much further can prevent further vehicle breakdowns in the future. In the case of a serious accident, a body shop can assess the problems and determine the best course of action for repairs, as well as evaluate how much they will cost.
Beyond that, regular checkups are recommended. Tires must be rotated, fluids needs to be replaced and the engine must be evaluated. After driving 25,000 miles, most auto dealers suggest having the vehicle checked out to ensure everything is running smoothly. Taking the car into the auto repair professional you trust will protect you from further problems down the road.
Not every type of auto repair work needs to be done by a certified mechanic. You can fix some of a vehicle's issues just by paying attention to how the automobile is running and having a basic understanding of auto repair. Look over the ways weather may impact your car and what preventative measures you can take to avoid having to take it into the shop. At the same time, be aware of mechanic scams that can impact your experience.
Preventing Trips To The Professional
Some fixes to your car can be done without paying a specialist. Issues like replacing oil and air filters are relatively simple, with instructions provided in the owner's manual on how to make these changes. The same goes for replacing broken windshield wipers or burnt-out headlights. Such issues should be repaired quickly to guarantee safety, but don't require a visit to a garage. By handling these types of tasks on your own, you'll gain a better understanding for how your car operates and save time and money.
Along with understanding how to fix manageable vehicle issues that may arise, taking preventative measures to avoid future problems is a valuable time saver. Many problem-solving best practices are related to the seasons. Your vehicle will be in different conditions in the winter than in the summer, meaning it requires a different type of preparation.
In the spring and summer, you want to be sure your air conditioner and cooling systems work correctly. Given the high temperatures the vehicle will be exposed to, overheating is a common problem. Look over the system by ensuring there is enough coolant available. If it needs to be refilled, it is best to open the hood and add more to the car before it gets too warm out. Also, clean out fan ducts and other ventilation sources necessary for summertime driving.
For winter driving, features such as the defroster, heater and exhaust system are paramount. Look in your owner's manual for specific directions on how features should be checked and repaired. Many newer cars have a cabin air filter that can be replaced when needed, allowing warm air to continue to flow in. Also, check your tires before winter driving, as they need to be at the proper pressure to perform well on snow and ice.
There is a common worry among many people that auto repair professionals take advantage of the general public. Because so many people are unaware of how to fix the problems in their vehicle, they are nervous of being overcharged by mechanics or worried that the improper work is being done.
While the great majority of professionals in the industry are honest, hard-working people, a few bad apples can ruin everything. You should be extra careful when first visiting a mechanic to guarantee that the price you're charged and maintenance the vehicle receives are fair.
Among the common scams pulled are needless repairs, where a garage charges you for work that isn't necessary. Another popular one is attracting customers through a cheap oil change or tire pressure check. Then, when you are in the shop and your car is being repaired, they give you a long list of other corrections they'd like to make, therefore boosting the total cost of your bill.
The best way to combat these types of problems is getting a written estimate before work is done. That way, you can see how much repairs are expected to cost. If the final bill is higher than the estimate projected, ask to specifically see the work. Make sure information is put in writing as well. If a problem remains, you can have proof that work was not done to your satisfaction.
By working closely with an auto repair professional and doing some of the tune-up work on your own, you will be less likely to fall for these scams. At the same time, you'll be able to drive out with a clean and healthy vehicle, thanks to the repairs made by a trained professional.