Watch Out For Unnecessary Auto Repair Costs
If you are not knowledgeable about auto service, you might think you have no way of knowing whether your mechanic is burdening you with unnecessary costs or not.
However, if you know what to watch out for, meaning if you keep in mind the most common ways in which sketchy auto shops try to make extra money, you can get better at avoiding the pitfalls.
Unnecessary Part Replacement Unethical mechanics will sometimes try to tell you that a certain part of the car needs replacing, when in fact it does not.
If an unexpected part replacement is suggested, ask the mechanic to show you the exact part, and mark it in some way so you can check back on it.
Request that he give you the old part back, to make sure that it was indeed even replaced.
You can then, if you want, take it to a third party so they can check if the part was even broken.
Unauthorized Work Telling your mechanic to "do whatever is necessary" is like giving him blank check to charge you as much as he wants.
Granted, most mechanics will be honest with you, but the point is to not take the risk.
Always ask for a repair estimate, or work order, that lists every repair that you have authorized.
Double check the itemized list before signing, so that you know exactly how much you are being charged for what.
If it ends up being more that the original estimate, you'll know to ask about it.
Too-Low-Priced Deals Auto service shops that advertise incredibly low-priced services are called "loss leaders".
Meaning that they know they will lose money on the low-priced service, but they do so in hopes that when customers come in for said deal, they [the mechanics] can sell the customers on additional repair that the customer did not know were needed.
Always ask the mechanic to explain why a repair is needed.
If you're not convinced, go to another shop and ask for a second opinion.
Misdiagnosis Misdiagnoses are not always intentional.
Mechanics make honest mistakes just like everyone else.
So when you get a diagnosis, make sure that it matches up with the symptoms you've been seeing in your car, and never be afraid to ask questions to make sure that you understand everything that is being said and done by the auto service shop.