Car Accident Aftermath »
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.
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.
If you want to avoid entering the hosting hell dimension, here are 10 potential entertaining glitches, and how to avoid them.
All it takes is a little preparation to get your car winter-ready and to keep from getting into an icy situation.
If ¬all good stories begin with “It was a dark, stormy night”, you will probably not like this one. After all, it was actually a very pleasant, serene evening on a remote coffee plantation in Panama, where my wife and I were vacationing a year ago. This is where I heard about the owner’s 1963 Mercedes Convertible. He had left the car in a friend’s garage when he left the US over ten years ago and since then it had mostly been hibernating unattended. After our vacation was over, it took me six months to convince Randy that selling the car to me was the right thing to do. At that time, I still owned a 1967 Mercedes Coupe. That car needed a lot of fine-tuning, and I never quite understood why it drove so sluggish. Over time, I came to the realization that the older and simpler a car really is, the fewer people nowadays still know how to work on it. One day, though, I drove by HR AUTO on Saticoy Street and noticed quite a few vintage Mercedes parked in front of the shop. Not the over the top-pretentious kind, but classic Benz nonetheless. My curiosity was peaked, and when I found the time to stop by and chat with one of the owners/mechanics, Roupen patiently answered all my questions and showed me the small shop. He has been working on (primarily) Mercedes since 1974, when he was learning to be a mechanic in Lebanon. Roupen knows these vintage cars inside out. After all, he started to work on them when they were not Classics but regular vehicles in everyday use. Since then, he built up extensive in depth knowledge, combined with a true passion for vintage Benz. If you are interested, he will gladly provide some tutoring on the difference between the return valve of a 1967 carburetor compared to the W111 1969 export model. At the same time, he and his partner Hratch Ourichian will gladly and expertly work on any modern vehicle as well. Going back to my ’67, though: I had previously paid Mr. German Super Mechanic $ 1000 for minor repairs and tune-ups, but the car was still running poorly. It took Roupen only a few minutes to diagnose that the throttle linkage had been installed incorrectly in the past, which explained the painful sluggishness of my ride. He charged me $ 60 for his fix, which were the best $ 60 I ever spent. In addition, he also made another repair to the worn out transmission mount (which the other guy also had overlooked). Wow! Gone was the sluggishness, and the ride comfort was dramatically improved as well. So based on all that, it was a no-brainer to take the convertible back to them. Their work on this current love affair of set me back thousands and thousands of dollars. A LOT more than I had anticipated, however, of course Roupen’s kid deserves to go to Harvard law school and I guess I just paid for that. Am I happy that I had to spend so much money? No. Do I feel they earned their money and delivered quality work? Very much so! Also, who would have thought that Mercedes in 1963 had the audacity to sell a luxury vehicle without power steering? Yet, these guys managed to locate a complete vintage system, which they expertly rebuilt and then retrofitted to my car. Should you decide to give them a try, don’t expect people that look like Hollywood actors, wearing spotless, starched lab coats. Their current shop rate is $ 80/hour and based on my experience this is money well spent. These guys are honest, reasonable, friendly - and just amazingly good at what they do. Lastly, a word of caution, though: A year ago, when I first stepped into their office to settle a bill, I noticed a rifle leaning against the wall behind the desk. “BB gun?” I asked somewhat perplexed. “No, is old World War 2 rifle”, Roupen replied in accented English, “but we only use when we have problems with customers”. Up to this day I don’t know if he was joking. But don’t worry. The thing is long gone. I think they are now using a baseball bat instead.
Honest car garage that you can trust is very tough to find. I've been relying on their service from my last car (Nissan Altima) and my current car (Toyota Camry), and also my husband's car (Acura Integra). My co-workers depend on them for car services as well. I definitely recommend them if you need a regular maintenance on your car! My first opportunity with this company was when the head gasket of my Nissan Altima blew up. Since I was selling this car at the time, I wanted to keep the cost as low as possible. They fixed the problem with minimal cost, and it drove much better than before! I end up selling the car to a friend of a friend, and I never heard them complain of the car. Now, my husband and I usually go there for regular maintenance and for other car problems. I usually drop off the car in the morning, and they call me back before noon that the services are completed. They are not the cheapest, but very reasonable. They QUOTE ACCURATELY before the service, and if they need to look at the problem before the quote, they EXPLAIN THE QUOTE and THE SERVICE CLEARLY before starting any repair. Reasonable pricing with reliable and honest work is much much better than some garage that promises you the cheapest but keep your car for a very long time without really doing the job.
This is by far the best boba place I've been to in the valley. Cute little store that is hidden on the second floor in a busy shopping center right by CSUN. The outside is a little shabby, but don't be fooled! The interior is quite cozy, and the friendly staff always makes sure you feel welcomed. In addition to their wide variety of specialty beverages (ranging from exotic teas to specialty coffees to fruit smoothies), they also have really great food. I usually order their popcorn chicken, which is like their #1 seller. Trust me, it's really good! Just be careful with the spicy stuff they put on it. I get my chicken mild. I also like their jasmine milk tea with half mini boba and half regular ones. By the way, they also do sugar and soy subs if anyone is into that. Their tapioca balls (boba) are always fresh and soft unlike many other places. Lately, I've been drawn to their create your own menu, which allows you to combine flavors and make your own slush, snow bubble, or Mar-tea-ni. Last time I got the strawberry peach Mar-tea-ni with lychee jelly, and I was pleased with the concoctions. So ya...definitely give this place a try!
I know that my Acura 3.2TL and RSX are well taken care of at RM Automotive. I've been coming here since 2003 and personally experienced a level of professionalism and frankness that has always been very refreshing. Reed, John, and Mike are very friendly, and knowledgeable. For instance, I was picking up my car one day and observed a tow truck driver dropping off a very old American-made car and its very worried driver. Within 5 minutes, John explained to the owner what was wrong with the car(something to do with the electrical wires and the alarm system) and that he would fix the problem within minutes for free. I literally saw the anxiety on the owner's face disappear. Finding the right mechanic is a puzzle, since there are so many out there. But, if you choose RM Automotive, I know from personal experience, that these guys will take care of you.
I had a dinner at Claim Jumper last Saturday with group of friends and as always we've had a great time. Even though their menu has changed over the years, they still tend to serve portions on the large side. Good, delicious food for everyone at the table, had to take some "to go" as the chicken pot pie was too much for me after a bowl of soup. All of us enjoyed the meal This is a top rate chain where you take home good food as you can't normally eat it all! If you have a normal appetite, you can easily split a meal with someone and both of you will be full. Long story short; every thing in this restaurant is big. Plus it doesn't hurt the wallet, well unless you order drinks. The Staff are always cheerful, helpful, and genuinely appear to enjoy working there. I recommend this restaurant without hesitation.
Jeff and Amy are really great! My car battery died and I would have had to tow my car into their shop (which is only a mile away) since I had no one to jump start me. This is also my first car so I don't know what to do when something goes awry. But Jeff was nice enough to actually come out to ME which saved a lot of trouble and money. He even brought the new battery and changed it right then and there. That's service. He's so so nice and they really care. Their prices are very reasonable, they have great communication and got me back on the road asap. Made a loyal customer out of me. I really recommend checking them out. I won't trust my car to anyone but them. :D Check out the other great reviews they got over at yahoo too. ^_^ http://local.yahoo.com/info-20656436-joe-s-auto-repair-northridge
I recently called High Octane from the "dealer" about my 1998 Cadillac STS. I had broke down over the weekend and they were still open. I had a bad coolant leak and was really at their mercy. They called me on Monday morning and gave me a qoute of over $3500 for head gasket leaks !!!! . I called High Octane and spoke to Charles , he told me that although that car is known for head gaskets he assured me that it would not be an leak I would see on the ground. I towed the car out and they found the real problem... the radiator tank split, they replaced the radiator tanks and coolant and I was out for less than $450 dollars. I was so impressed, they knew it wasn't the big problem and saved me so much money. They even gave me a ride to work and back..... Highly recommend this shop
If I could give 10 stars, I would. I found this shop by searching Yelp. I was looking for a certified Lexus repair shop. My 2014 Lexus needed to be serviced. I was able to get a same day appt. I was provided a ride to work via RM Shuttle. The pricing was fair and I did not, at any time, feel as though I was being "taken" with unnecessary services. These men are professional, courteous, and ensure that you fully aware of exactly what will be done to your car. They even went as far as to let me know that at 60,000 mi. I would be looking at a higher cost due to the servicing that is entailed for that mileage. I appreciated this because I know going in, what to expect. This is my go-to shop for all of my Lexus needs. Thank you gentlemen!!
Just wanted everyone out there to know what a great shop High Octane is. I brought my roughly used 1967 F250 pick-up to Charles and company it needed lots of work to make it a dependable driver again. The list is long of the major work to be done. Well this truck is up and running great, every bit of work was done so well, every part replaced was in the bed for my inspection. A friend of mine sent me to High Octane because of their knowledge of older cars and trucks. And I am so glad he did. I am though about to take my 2004 Thunderbird over... I have heard that they are just as great with new cars. I will be back and I will send friends.
I have been to other repair facilities in the San Fernando Valley over the past 30 years and have used both Harry's Automotive and the newly named "High Octane Automotive" for several years. I can honestly say that other independent shops AND dealerships fail in comparison. High Octane Automotive has outstanding customer service, a highly knowledgeable and well-trained staff and exceptional leadership. I would recommend this garage for anyone looking for quality service at a fair and competitive price and most importantly, reliability.
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.