When it comes to finding a good service center or a good mechanic, can be a tricky task. That said, here are some questions you should ask a service center or a mechanic when bringing in your vehicle for a repair. These questions will help you understand the problems with your vehicle, the cost of these repairs, the guarantees and warranties behind these repairs, as well as help you build a trusting relationship with the person who will be fixing your car.
How much will a diagnosis of my vehicle cost and how long will it take?
As cars have become more tech-dependent over the years, diagnosing a problem has become even harder. Mechanics will need to run a diagnostic on your vehicle to check what’s wrong with your vehicle and these may take time. In this case, make sure to always ask how much the diagnosis will cost, if it will cost anything, and how long it will take so you can better manage your time.
What other parts need to be replaced or repaired?
During the initial diagnosis process of your vehicle, your mechanic or service center might spot other underlying problems that your vehicle might have. These problems may not cause any issues now, however, you may need to deal with them in the future. Knowing what to expect will give you guidance as to potential repair costs later on and will give you time to budget for them. Ask for their advice on which issues to tackle first so you can get your car back on the road as soon as possible but in a safe condition.
Can I get a quote or invoice for the repair?
Once a mechanic or service center has inspected your vehicle, you can ask them for a quote or invoice for the repair. This gives you a general idea of what to expect for the job and what associated fees there are for it. In this manner, you can also protect yourself from hidden fees or expensive extra additions that you may not actually need for your vehicle. If the repair job is found to be more serious than the initial diagnosis you can talk to the service center or mechanic to come to an agreement so that your vehicle can return to the road.
Word of advice, when the time comes and you have to pay for your service, make sure that you’re ready with cash in hand or money in the bank. If you bring cash, bring a little extra just in case there are some extra items that were needed to complete the service.
Ask the mechanic or service advisor for a list of parts
When bringing in your vehicle to get fixed or serviced, always make sure to ask the mechanic or service advisor for the list of parts that will be needed. The parts used for any repair will have an impact on the final price. Original parts will cost more but come with the manufacturer’s guarantee that they will last long. However, these items will lean more on the expensive side. Replacement or refurbished parts on the other hand are more affordable but are subject to their respective warranties and condition. Make sure to ask for options so that you can get the best deal out of your repair or service.
How long can I drive before my issue becomes a real problem?
In the event that a mechanic has spotted an issue with your vehicle but you don’t have the budget for an immediate repair, you can ask him how much time you have before you need to fix the problem. This will give you a good time frame in order to save for the repair or to source parts for it. However, it is highly recommended that you deal with the issue as soon as possible before it ends up becoming more costly later on.
Can you show me the issue with the car?
You can also ask the mechanic to show you the problem with your vehicle before you send it out for repair. In doing this you can see for yourself what is going on with your vehicle and what needs to be done in order to fix it. A good mechanic will be able to explain the problem to you in detail and in a way that you will be able to understand. This also includes how they can fix the problem and how they diagnosed it.
How long will it take to complete the repair?
Another good and sensible question to ask your mechanic is when the repair will be completed. If you use or car often, this will give you a good estimate of how much downtime you need to allot for your vehicle. It will also give you time to arrange an alternative means of transportation if necessary. The mechanic should be able to give you a date as to when your vehicle will be ready as they will be the ones conducting the work on your car.
What are the warranties that come with the repair?
Before work starts on the repair of your vehicle, make sure to ask about any warranties on the parts or guarantees that the mechanic or service center can provide. Make sure to find out how long the warranty on the replacement parts put onto your vehicle as well as for the job done as well. In the event that something does go wrong within the warranty period, you can have the service center or the mechanic repair your vehicle again for free. Knowing if there is a warranty can also help with your consumer rights in case anything goes wrong—which assume they won’t.
Ask to see the parts that were replaced
Seeing the parts that have been replaced will help give you visual confirmation that the job has been completed. It will also help you understand your car better and see how your driving style can affect certain parts of your vehicle.
How was the test drive?
If your car’s repair needs a test drive to be conducted, make sure to ask your mechanic about it. You can ask the mechanic about how the car’s performance improved and if there are any other lingering problems still present that may need to be addressed. This can also come in handy when dealing with the alignment of your vehicle. After the test drive, you can ask the mechanic to readjust a few components if their initial fix isn’t up to your standards or if you feel that the vehicle is still unable to drive straight.