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 don't have to tell you that a transmission repair is probably one of the most expensive repair we sometimes have to make. For an expense could potentially exceed $3,000 you really have to do your homework to make sure you select the right repair shop. I researched and interviewed 10 Transmission repair shops before eventually selecting A-1 Transmission. My selection criteria included: Customer reviews, Warranty - both miles and months, who does the work - employees or owner who offers the warranty, Customer Care skills and how did they make me feel after I met with them. A - 1 owner "John" satisfied all of these requirements for me. Two days after taking my truck to the shop, John called and asked me to come over to his shop. When I arrived, my transmission was completely disassembled on on the table. John was able to show the exact problems and and asked me to feel and rub area that had malfunction and inappropriate wear. Two days later I picked up my 04 F - 150 truck on the day promised. I thought I would wait a while before posting my review. A month has passed and I have driven to Austin, TX twice. I'm now satisfied that the repair was successful and I'm very happy with the results. I'm also happy that I have a 24,000 miles and 24 month warranty. I highly recommend A-1. The service and customer experience exceeded my expectations. Thank you John for all you did and for how well you did it!
My friend and I are actively heading out of town to a bachelor party. As we are passing through Katy his truck stalls out on the freeway unexpectedly. Freaked, we turn it over and pull off to an Auto Parts. They test the engine, battery, and alternator- no issues. We look up nearest places and find Smith's and head there. They are packed- it's 4:30pm on a Friday. The mechanic tells us he isn't sure what they can do but he notices something quick- a leaf in the O2 sensor. He flicks it out and boom, the truck is totally fixed. He refused to charge for such a simple thing. What a boss!! I wish I lived closer so we could frequent here. So, if you were busy waiting for your car, it might have been us keeping you waiting a couple of extra minutes, sorry guys, but Austin is waiting!
Auto Care USA on Westheimer Parkway is the most professional and honest auto repair shop I have ever dealt with. The A/C was broke on my daughter's 2009 Honda Pilot. She took it to Katy Honda and they told her the compressor was bad and needed to be replaced. All said, they quoted the total repairs at almost $1,000!! No way was I going to spend that much on repairs without a second opinion. I took it to Auto Care and it ended up being a relay. Total parts and labor $108. Prior to this Auto Care had replaced the brakes on another of our vehicles. Great price, great service, and quality work. Thanks again to the staff at Auto Care USA. You have gained a lifetime customer!
My dodge truck had transmission issues contacted John and he was able to get it right in quickly . The truck had a warranty on it and John was my advocate and dealt with warranty company for me. After bickering back and forth he was able to negotiate the full cost of repairs leaving me with just a $100 deductible . The job was down fairly quick considering waiting for parts,check from warranty company etc. Hopefully I will never need transmission work on any vehicle I own but if I do , I will definitely go see John at A-1 . I highly recommend you do the same.
Several weeks ago, I was prepared to pay $1,000 for an a/c repair with the local bougie car repair company, that is now on every corner in Katy. I actually like (& somewhat trust) the fancy place. However, I decided to get a 2nd opinion. Discount Car Care fixed my a/c for next to nothing. They fixed a leak in less than 20 minutes! They admitted that there is a small chance I would return in a few weeks, & would have to pay for a more complecated procedure. I have not had to return yet. By the way, they are open on weekends, including Sunday!!
We've been C&B's client for over 10 years with 3 Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Craig & his team have always given top notch service with a smile, competitively priced, and conveniently located in Katy. They took excellent care of us recently as I transitioned from one Mercedes to another. C&B did a buyer-check on it before we bought. Today, they serviced it for the first time, and replaced the original cabin filter the Mercedes dealer who had serviced it before NEVER changed. Craig & his team pay attention to details, and are AWESOME!
I think I found a shop I can finally refer my friends and family too when it comes to repairs on their cars. The owner, John, was very professional. I asked questions and he answered all of them . I also like the one on one with the mechanic, who will do the actual work on my vechicle. I had a transmission problem and John made sure it was fixed. He road tested my car until he was sure there was not any more problems. If you want an honest person and a fair price with new parts, John is your man at A-1 Transmission Specialists.
I was new to Katy and nervous about finding a mechanic. I'm somewhat car savvy, but I'm also a woman and fully expected to have to go through several before finding someone I trusted. I could not have been more wrong. I found Smith's Auto Repair online and saw their ratings on many sites was phenomenal. I've now taken my car and my fiance's car in for repairs, and I wouldn't even dream of going anywhere else. They are honest, fair-priced, and very knowledgeable. THANK YOU for giving me a peace of mind in a very corrupt industry.
i have been to many places to get my car fixed. Usually it runs me between 800 to 1,000.00 every time I take it in. So I called Mac, and he came out to see what was going on with my Corvette. I had recently installed a new stereo at a stereo shop, and they installed it and i Have had issues with it starting ever since. Mac was very knowledgeable about my issue and came with parts in hand. He spent about an hour and a half and had my car tip top and starting every time. He saved me time and money.
Honest, friendly staff. I travel to Katy frequently to visit family and friends and dropped in to get a second opinion on a ton of work quoted by "the other guys" and after my Honda was fully looked over, I didn't even need the $1500 of work I was pressured to get done. Instead I left Christian Brothers with an HONEST inspection, oil change and a new switch to get my cruise control operating again. I'll certainly continue to stop in to the Westgreen location when I'm in town!
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.