What Should I Do When My Car Dies on the Road? »
Four tips for keeping yourself and your vehicle safe while you wait.
Four tips for keeping yourself and your vehicle safe while you wait.
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.
I took my 2004 Mitsubishi Endeavor in for engine miss and electric window issue. Was diagnosed with having ignition coil bad and needing window motor replace. They also informed me that front wheel bearing was bad and would need replaced. Was informed total price would be $1600.00.I debated whether to put that much into fixing(book value 2,000 to 2,500 trade in)I agreed to repairs and was told they'd call when complete. After several days I called to get status on repairs and was told they found axle seal bad and quote went up to $1800.Agreed again apprehensively and waited for call. After several days went by W/O hearing from them I called for info. They then informed me they had found rear wheel bearing bad and would need another $400.00 to fix. I told them no and was completely disgusted with them. Explained I would never have put money into repairs if I knew they would keep asking for more money. After getting home with invoice with charges broke down I decided to investigate charges for parts. They use NAPA and when going online with part numbers they used I found they had inflated prices by $310.00 . Prices online retail were $498.00 and they charged $808.00.When I called owner and told him I was thoroughly disgusted with them for pricing he informed me he had to charge more to cover replacement for 3yr 36,000 warranty on parts. No where on invoice does this info explain or give the customer the choice to waive warranty if they prefer due to additional charges.I sincerely regret using this business and recommend Morgan County stay away and find other business for auto repairs!
Since my previous review I have learned much more about this establishment that I am quite upset about. The individuals working here told me they could not get the part for my car and if they could it would be in excess of $3200 not including labor. I drive a 2001 Ford Escape and the Exhaust manifold is cracked at the firewall. My husband decided to see what he could do to repair the 01 Escape. Upon looking at several websites he not only found the parts to complete the repair but they were nowhere near the cost quoted. Mind you these were not parts from Ford Motor Company however there are parts to take care of this issue. I have no other option but to believe because I am a woman they were dealing with that they they shooed me away like a pesky fly. Lack of scruples means lack of business!!
The head gasket job was to take a week....it took a month. I called several times to check on progress, but Jason would not call me back. The only time he called was when the job was done and he wanted paid. He was a bit higher than other estimates, but I was willing to pay it as my neighbor vouched for him. 9 days after the head gasket job was done, the car broke down again. I called him and he was willing to tow it in and look at it, but made it clear to me that he would not be responsible for the repairs if HE determined it was not his fault... upon checking the car myself, I discovered the belt tension adjusting bolt had been overtorqued and broken, and the bolt holding the idler pulley in place had not been tightened at all - resulting in the belt being thrown off.
I have a car with 250,000 miles on it. It had a tick in the head of it and no other problems existed. No leaks, no oil light, nothing. He put a re-manufactured head on it and charged me 1200 for the whole thing. When you talk to him he will say when he is fixing something he is gonna fix it right and he sounds like he is going to be very thorough. The first day I have my car back the oil light comes on when I am idling at a light. I call him about it and he isn't too concerned. I then notice the plastic on my headlights are covered on the inside with a film of what I can only assume is the cleaner used for oil. I go in to talk to him about everything. I ask him if it's possible he messed something up or there was a problem with the head. He gave me a whole speech about how it couldn't be, but he hadn't tested anything to give me a diagnoses. Then he had it in there and said everything was all right and he replaced the headlights but still claimed no one did anything to them. Then my car starts burning through 1-2 quarts a week. I take it back to him and say something has to be wrong with it. He then yells at me and says I am blaming him because I had to pay for something.(referring to repairs to my car) I told him my questions were legitimate. He told me he would run some tests on the lower part of the engine and it would cost me $70. After he yelled at me and refused to offer quality customer service I decided I didn't want a man like that touching my car again. I got it looked at by Gates on 37 and they told me there is a leak in my rear seal. Now if G force had actually looked at my car when I had questions they would have seen this. However, once he had my money for the job my questions and concerns didn't worry him. Now my car isn't starting so while under the hood I see a wire harness that is under my battery that has just been laying there on my engine getting baked every day because no one clipped it up and it wasn't like this prior and no one has done any major repairs since. This place is horrible. As someone in business when I have a customer with concerns about my quality of a job I did I listen to their concerns and do what I can to make sure they walk away happy. I never yell at them and accuse them of wanting free things. If you are looking for a mechanic in Martinsville call Mike Swango. I called him at 7:30 and he was closed but got back with me in 30 minutes and said bring it out and he was at the shop to get my keys and repaired it the next morning. Great customer service. G force could learn something about that.
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.