When your car stops working, you suddenly find yourself in a tight spot. If you know nothing about cars, you’re at the mercy of the mechanic. What if you’re in such a hurry that you can’t research mechanics ahead of time? Should you just say yes to everything a mechanic says and hope the bill won’t be too horrendous? This is taking a risk, since some unscrupulous mechanics could try to take advantage of you.
To make sure the mechanic doesn’t try to pull the wool over your eyes, ask these top eight questions before accepting service.
Are you ASE certified?
Certification from Automotive Service Excellence is a good sign an auto shop offers quality vehicle repairs and services without scamming their customers. At Scott’s Fort Collins Auto & Repair, we’re proud to be ASE certified.
How will I get my car to the repair shop?
If your car breaks down on the road, you need a way to get it to the shop. You also need a means of transportation while your car is being serviced. Scott’s offers a towing service if you become stranded and gives out free loaner cars while your car is the shop.
What labor and parts warranties do you offer?
Before approving any work to be done, find out about guarantees. You want to know you can trust a new part to last and that you’ll receive free additional services if the part fails within a given timeframe. Scott’s offers a written warranty that guarantees parts and labor for 36 months/36,000 miles. While our mechanics strive to perform reliable repairs every time, this no-hassle warranty delivers extra peace of mind.
Do you have a good reputation?
The answer will undoubtedly be yes, even if it’s not true. For some proof, ask if the mechanic has any references you can contact. You can also check out reviews on Yelp and learn the mechanic’s standing with the Better Business Bureau. Scott’s is proud to make our customers happy! We often receive 5-star reviews and maintain an A+ rating with the BBB.
What is your used parts policy?
Some shop owners try to pass off used parts as new to save themselves money. To make sure you get what you paid for, ask about the mechanic’s used parts policy. The only time it’s okay for a mechanic to install used parts is if they’re replacing expensive components – such as differentials, transmissions or engines – and they receive permission from you do to so. Then they pass the savings on to you. This is the practice we employ here at Scott’s.
What’s your repair estimate process?
You can expect to receive a diagnosis of what’s wrong and an estimate of how much it will cost to repair or replace individual parts. Ask how the mechanic reaches an estimate. In other words, how much of the repair cost is for parts and how much is for labor? Find out these details so there aren’t any nasty surprises.
How long will it take to repair my car?
Before you leave your vehicle with the mechanic, receive an estimate regarding how long the repair will take. Depending on the extent of the repair, the need to order in parts and the resources available, the repair could take anywhere from a few hours to a week or more.
Can I receive a written record of the repairs you make?
This is critical when it comes to holding the mechanic accountable for their work and making warranty claims. A written record of repairs is also handy if you ever decide to sell your car. Scott’s also includes a written receipt with all the details you need to know.
To work with a reliable mechanic here in town, please schedule an appointment with Scott’s Fort Collins Auto & Repair or call us at (970) 682-4202.