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September 24, 2012

Car Trouble? Get More Than One Opinion!

Shady-mechanicsCar trouble can strike anytime and anywhere. Whether you have an older vehicle or one that was purchased just a short time ago, you’ll find that problems crop up when you are least prepared for them. Chances are good that your first instinct is going to be to take your car to a mechanic shop to have the problem repaired or diagnosed. While that’s fine, you shouldn’t stop there. When you go to a doctor for a serious health problem, you get a second opinion. The same should be done for your car’s health. Why should you worry about getting more than one opinion?

Are They Telling You the Truth?

While it would be nice to assume that all mechanics are honest and trustworthy, that’s not the case (it’s not the case in any industry). When car trouble strikes, getting a second opinion from another expert will help ensure that you’re not being taken for a ride, so to speak. While your original mechanic might not be outright lying to you, they might be adding on extra things that don’t necessarily need to be done right away. Getting a second opinion allows you to get at the truth of the situation.

Price Considerations

One of the most important reasons to get a second opinion on your vehicle’s health has to do with price. If the mechanic thinks you’re a “captive audience”, you might find that you’re being charged more than what the same repair would cost at another shop. Pick up the phone and call a couple of other shops and find out what the same repair would cost from them.

Trust and Comfort

It’s no secret that finding a trustworthy mechanic that you feel comfortable with is one of the most important things to do. There is no reason that you need to work with a mechanic that makes you feel uncomfortable or that you don’t feel that you can trust. Shopping around for a second opinion will help ensure that you find the right mechanic for you, even if the price is the same.

Before Choosing Any Mechanic

Before you opt for any mechanic, whether for an initial diagnosis or for a second opinion, you need to do some legwork. This can help you cut down on uncertainty from the very beginning. You need to research any mechanic that you’re considering working with to ensure that they have a good reputation in the community.

One of the best resources available to you is the Better Business Bureau. You can use the BBB’s website to look for information about mechanics in your area (if they’re listed with the BBB, of course). These listings will give you quite a bit of information, including how long the company has been in business and any complaints lodged against the company. You can also find out how they have handled those complaints, and get a feel for whether they were legitimate beefs or just someone out to get something for nothing.

You also need to use the Internet to find customer reviews for the mechanics on your list of potential choices. There is nothing quite as informative as finding out what other customers have experienced in terms of service quality, price and customer service, and those who have had bad experiences are usually more than happy to share their views through online review sites.

To Sum Up

When car trouble strikes, getting your car to a mechanic to find out what’s wrong is only the first step. You need to make sure that you’re being treated fairly and that you have chosen the right mechanic for the job.

Don Elfrink is the owner and operator of AutoMatStore, an auto flooring company based out Columbia, Missouri. Before AutoMatStore, Elfrink was the operator of an automotive production site. AutoMatStore focuses on logo, carpeted, molded and all weather floor mats.

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