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?
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.
I had purchased a used car while living in Fairbanks and taken my car to Simard Automotive based on the reviews found online. A month later I had placed the car on Gumtree in the hopes of selling the car before I left Fairbanks. I had several inquires, and a few seemed promising. During this time I was approached by a co-worker/friend whom was interested in the car for his daughter. I was completely upfront about the issues with the car and even said he could contact Simard Automotive to verify what I was saying. There was a meeting arranged for the daughter and mother to drive the car. The family was happy enough with everything and made a verbal agreement to purchase the car. It was over the weekend while I was away that the co-worker/friend had rang Simard Automotive and spoke to the same individual that I had dealing with the month prior. I was abused verbally by the co-worker due to the conversation he had with Simard Automotive.Mike Simard claimed after I approached him with what happened that “…it will help my attempt to resolve this in any way I can for you…”. Despite this ‘promise’ Mike was not entirely convinced in the beginning that one of his employees had indeed revealed customer information and provided advice not to purchase the car as it was a piece of junk. In fact I had to email Mike Simard several times in an effort to follow-up this issue, where each time he grew less professional where finally passed me onto the Office Manager. She had to ring the co-worker to verify that one of the staff members had indeed given too much information.Never once did Simard Automotive offer compensation as it was their direct involvement for why the sale fell through rather believing that I should be satisfied with the firing of the staff member. The firing of the staff member was the business of Simard Automotive, not me. In the end Mike Simard washed his hands of Simard Automotives’ involvement and refused any type of compensation.
Really bad sales people. They are rude and don't really know anything about the sleds and bikes they are selling. Parts people are ok but never have anything in stock and takes FOREVER to get the parts in. Its also a HUGE pain to park and then get out of the place.
I'm certainly no car genius, but I'm also not an idiot.. maybe if I would have brought some large older men with me they would have listened to my suggestions... but because I'm a young woman there's clearly no reason to listen to what I have to say. They seem like nice people but I felt thoroughly disrespected.Because I have an Audi, there are limited choices of where I can have work done on my car. We've been taking the car here for about 3 years now. Recently I brought the car in to have work done on the heater. I told the man it probably needed a specific thing done to it (because that had been the problem in the past), but he dismissed the suggestion and said instead I needed an almost $800 repair. After agreeing to the much more pricey repair, I got a call saying they were not completely satisfied with the work and were going to do the repair I ORIGINALLY SUGGESTED (hmmmmm suspicious huh?)When i picked the car up, the heater only works when the car engine is over 3000 rpm... so city driving means the car is still icy inside. Also, the coolant was low after getting it back and the overheated within a couple days of getting it back.The least I can say is disappointed.
They are a huge rip off for the military folks. Don't recommend them for anyone and will tell everyone to go to Northern Power Sports or Compeaus over them. They also treat people like they are stupid.
I’m steaming mad!My husband and I went to Kendall Mazda/kia of Fairbanks in hopes to either purchase or lease a new vehicle depending on the numbers they could give us for a trade, but when we found something we really loved and showed clear excitement about And interest in, we where shown (what we now know were fake numbers including the amount our trade was worth). They let us test the car for a little while before we figured it out, and after returning to review the numbers and make a decision, there was a total 360° in attitude and we were shown all types of confusing math that made extremely no sense whatsoever, on top of that they started acting strange and got really patronizing by comparing numbers with fruit(i.e bananas and Apples..) we were never actually shown any interest rates, credit scores, or actual purchase forms after we had made our minds up on the new car that we really wanted. Don't get me wrong the staff we actually talked to was quite nice, but when we questioned about payment options we where basically told that it wouldn't be possible for them to sell us a vehicle, New OR used, in a way to where we felt our money wasn't good enough. To be honest my husband and I feel discriminated against and treated like dummies with money to throw away. Everything was fine until we started asking questions, the manager that WAS there wouldn't really even look at us after we were being turned away. My husband has made his mind up not to return and is planning on either taking legal action or placing a strong formal complaint, but I however am willing to swallow my anger and hopefully talk him down and get the car we both had our hearts set on. Either that, or go to corporate and the district manager.
The service department at Gene's is an absolute mess. They refuse to properly repair vehicles under warranty and when questioned, simply tell customers to leave. I recommend anybody with poor customer experiences to complain to corporate so that they can investigate the continued lack of customer service. Shame on them.
I only wish that Yelp offered less than one star because this dealership deserves nothing short of a lump of coal. On Sunday Feb 1, our brand new Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk stalled in Fairbanks, AK on the highway. Several failed attempts to start. Was able to get it towed to my work for the weekend and then had the vehicle towed to Gene's Chrysler on Monday morning. We were told that they cleared the engine codes, got the vehicle running and it was ready for pickup. We went to pick up the vehicle Wednesday evening and didn't even make it out of the parking lot before the Service Engine light illuminated. We left the vehicle. Thursday we were again informed that the vehicle had been repaired. This time they did a PCM update. I read the service report and it indicated that there were several engine codes. All of them for cylinder misfires. I inquired about what they had done to investigate the misfire and was told that they did nothing...that they simply reprogrammed the computer and reset the codes. I assured the service advisor, Angelica, that the problem was clearly not addressed and that I suspected the vehicle would again break down. She assured me that it would not. The next morning my wife was stranded on the highway in a brand new Jeep Cherokee with just over 7k miles on it...the temperature outside..? -31F. Yes...thats a NEGATIVE 31 degrees fahrenheit!!!We again had the vehicle towed to Genes. They then lost the paperwork and the keys for a half day. They were unapologetic for sending us out with a still-broken vehicle. They continually fed us BS about the problem, rather than admitting that they were stumped...The diagnosis this time? The vehicle was due for an engine oil change!!!! REALLY??!!Are you out of your mind??!! The recommended service interval on a 2013-2014 Chrysler vehicle with synthetic blend engine oil is 12months/10,000 miles. If there is excessive starts and or towing with the vehicle, that number goes down. Our CHANGE ENGINE OIL light came on on Saturday Jan 31....the day before it broke down on the highway. Am I to believe that if I do not change my oil the second that the light comes on, it will break down in less than 10 miles??!!!! Really??!!The service manager, Terry, called me today, Saturday Feb 7 2015 and informed me that the vehicle was again repaired. I asked him what the problem was. He told me it was because we had not had them change the oil...The vehicle is only now 15 miles over the CHANGE ENGINE OIL light...keep in mind. I told him that it was not the problem and he then told me to "Shut the F@&% up and listen to him"I then called Lane Nichols, the owner of Gene's Chrysler and told him what his service manager told me and he told me not to bring the car to his dealership anymore.We then went to the dealership to collect our vehicle and were asked to sign a statement saying that we were threatening to the staff and that the vehicle problem was due to poor maintenance. When we refused, the service manager, Terry, told us that he would call the police and have us arrested for 'stealing the vehicle'... yes, for stealing our own vehicle from their business after they had performed no billable work on. Really??!!NOT TO MENTION....the vehicle, again, WOULD NOT START!!!! UNBELIEVABLE!! Still a broken vehicle. We have escalated the case to corporate. They were appalled. They have assigned the complaint to a case-worker who is supposed to contact us on Monday.We then had the vehicle towed from the dealership.
Dependable, affordable Towing Service in the Interior of ALASKA...........Serving the Interior since 1995
Gene's is the worst dealership in town. Their mark up on vehicles (about 10 percent, noted next to the MSRP, which they explain as "the cost of doing buisness in Alaska) is not found at the Ford dealership. I purchased my Jeep for MSRP in Anchorage and drove it back up. Lithia in Anchorage even offered to ship it up here for 300 dollars, which still saved me over 2500 had I bought the same vehicle at Gene's. Their service department is also a disappointment. Go to Ford, or Honda, or really anywhere else.
Seriously, I was drving up from Anc for work, all alone. -22 in Healy and my Avalanche was making strange notices. I was panicked. Cell service was limited so all I got out was a text about the noice and what was happening. I kept going with my load, coming down Ester @ 1:30 pm. I get a txt from my husband telling me to go see Areial at Fbx Gmc & Lythia 3300South Cushman. They got me right in fixed me up for less than $100 and with a free bottle of water I was on my way back to Anc at 3:25. I luv this place!! Forgive my typos, I'm on my cell still. Do Not get me wrong - Awesomeness Works Here!
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.