Getting car repairs is a lot like going to the dentist: they’re both painful yet unavoidable. What can you do to lessen the pain? Here are three tips.
Don’t assume that you’ll have to pay big money for car repairs. Go to your local auto supply store. Why? Most of the major auto supply store chains offer a free diagnostic device to help you dissect what’s going on with your car. That way you’ll know if it’s something simple that you could fix, or if you have a more major car repair on your hands.
You can also test your battery and starter for no charge. If you’re a real do-it-yourselfer, you could buy your car’s factory repair manual, which gives step-by-step directions for doing the repairs properly. You can even borrow tools from some of the auto supply stores for a small fee.
Another tip is to get an estimate for labor and parts for the car repairs you need. Based on that estimate, you can see if you can beat the price for the parts by going online and ordering them yourself. Many times you will find the parts much cheaper online – either for used or new parts. And if you think the labor is high, you can always get a second opinion from another repair shop.
The last tip is to avoid car dealerships if you can. Your dealership charges an average of thirty percent more than an independent shop would for the same car repairs. This represents a huge savings. To be sure that you’re working with a quality repair shop, check to make sure that their mechanics are ASE-certified.
You don’t have to be married to a mechanic to save on car repairs. With these simple tips, your budget will stretch much further.