When it comes to car repair or maintenance, taking it to a car mechanic is the best solution. However, walking into a car repair centre can be intimidating if you don't know much about vehicles. In your haste to drive again, you may bump into deceitful mechanics who may use your lack of knowledge to rip you off.
To ensure you don’t fall into such traps, here are six questions to ask your mechanic that could save your vehicle and your money.
Six Good Questions To Ask Your Mechanic
As a trusted car service in Melbourne, BCS Workshop understands your vehicle's importance to you. Hence, you must always choose a reliable and efficient mechanic that not just gets you the best service but helps you save money.
Before you choose a mechanic to hand over your valuable asset, ask them a set of questions to ensure you are trusting the right one.
1. Are You Accredited?
The first and easiest way to filter out-licensed and reliable mechanics from the ordinary is accreditation. A good car repair company will have accreditation from the major motor industry associations based on their region. For example, in Victoria and Melbourne, the Victorian Automotive Chamber of Commerce (VACC) licenses motor repair and service professionals.
A good mechanic will not just have the needed accreditation but will be happy to prove their credentials.
2. Can I Have A One-to-One Conversation With The Mechanic?
One mistake often car owners make is to hand over their vehicle at the service centre and leave. This increases your risk of fraud as you don’t know who will inspect your vehicle and whether or not they will work it properly.
As such, you should always meet the mechanic at the auto repair service. It allows you to identify the person responsible for servicing your car. You can build a relationship with them to show that you care about your vehicle and the work being done on it. Also, you can put your queries before them about your car maintenance or post-service to ensure everything is working properly. Talking to them is also a great way to get simple explanations if you don’t know much about your car and related problems.
And if you like their work, you can rely on them for vehicle repair and maintenance whenever you need it.
3. Is Auto Repair or Just a Recommendation Required?
When you don’t have much knowledge of your car, even a small issue may seem like a major one. This may cost you high if you get your car repaired by an inexperienced mechanic. They will suggest a costly repair, and you will agree without knowing whether or not it is actually required.
To avoid such situations, ask the mechanic whether a repair is required or just a recommendation will be enough. Sometimes, an immediate repair isn’t necessary and can be postponed for later. Asking the mechanic will give you a better understanding of the situation and help you make a more informed decision.
4. Will You Give A Free Estimate In Writing?
A mechanic shop can say a lot, but do they keep up with their words/. Do they follow what they say? You should ask your mechanic for a free estimate in writing for every service. Ask them to write what they intend to provide. This would allow you to make a budget and avoid surprises later in the bill.
5. Do You Offer A Warranty On Repairs?
Repair shops that offer a warranty on their repairs are likely confident about completing repairs to a high standard. However, you should know what type of warranty your mechanic offers. This is because warranties often vary between mechanics.
While some offer warranties based on kilometres (how many kilometres your vehicle does), others consider time (for example, one or two years). Also, ask your mechanic if the warranty covers the replacement cost or includes the labour cost.
6. Do You Provide A Maintenance Plan?
A reputed mechanic will want to give your vehicle back in good condition. They also want to ensure your car is roadworthy and maintains great condition. Ask them for a maintenance plan to help you anticipate future repairs if any.
Compare this to the manufacturer's recommendations in the car shop manual. If you find items in your maintenance plan that aren't in the manual, there's a chance your car mechanic is trying to sell you services you don't need.
Bonus: Supply Car Parts and Ask Your Mechanic To Install Them
Do you have spare parts, like spare tyres, at your home that can be used for car repair? If yes, ask the auto repair company if you can supply the car parts while the company install them.
However, one must remember that the quality of the repaired part in this situation is your sole responsibility.
This way, you can save quite a large amount of money. You can also ask them to use aftermarket parts. But be sure to ask your mechanic to supply and install parts only if they are compatible with your vehicle.
Another way to save money on car repairs is by asking the car repair company to supply and install the parts yourself. But again, you should be careful enough with the parts' quality and the actual installation job.
Knowing what questions to ask your mechanic can be significant when it comes to money, vehicle maintenance and safety. If they provide appropriate answers to all the above questions, they are likely a trustworthy mechanic who will take care of your vehicle and charge you a fair price. Plus, you will be able to ensure your and your family's peace of mind and safety.
And if you are in Melbourne (or nearby regions), and want commercial car maintenance or repair services, call BCS Workshop on (03) 9501 0011. We are a VACC-licensed commercial car repair provider with years of experience in the same. Bring us your car repair questions, and we will happily answer them.
For more details, get in touch with us today or book your service right away!