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Young automechanic with a clipboard welcoming a client at a repair shop.

How to Choose a Good Repair Shop in 5 Easy Steps

There’s nothing better than knowing you can take your vehicle to a repair shop you know and trust, but how do you determine if a repair shop is the real deal or taking you for a ride? Auto mechanics have a reputation for ripping customers off, so there’s good reason to be wary. In this blog post, we’re going to highlight exactly what you should do to ensure an auto repair shop is trustworthy and safe for you to use.

1. What’s the Word on the Street?

One of the best indicators of an auto repair shop comes from previous experience. Ask around or visit online forums to see what people are saying about the quality of work and level of service. Are customers offering praise or complaining? Are there any past customers that have taken in their vehicle for the same reasons as you? Reputation goes a long way, and you should really avoid those shops that you’ve been cautioned against.

2. Find Your Ideal Shop Before You Have an Emergency

When you move to a new place or get a new vehicle, you should always have a go-to auto repair shop in mind. Otherwise, you will be leaving yourself open to being ripped off in the case of an emergency. Scout out an auto repair shop you can trust and then take their details. If you find yourself in an unfortunate situation, you can rely on them to help you out without worrying they are taking you for a ride.

3. Ask the Right Questions

Auto repair shop workers know that you’re not an expert—that’s how they make their money! But you should brush up on some basics of auto repair and prepare some questions for when you visit them. Asking questions and knowing what answers to expect will help you decipher whether the auto repair shop is trying to rip you off and how honest they really are. You should ask about credentials, customer service policies, the overall experience of team members, and whether their work comes with a warranty. By answering these questions and getting more information on how they operate, you can rest assured that you are in safe hands.

4. Meet the Mechanic

Whether you’ve taken your vehicle in for restoration work, maintenance, or for a major repair, you should always ask to meet the mechanic that will work on your vehicle. You can ask them questions about what they will do and ask them to explain it in a way that makes sense to you. Building this bond with a mechanic is an important part of getting a great service, and an auto repair shop that won’t take the time to talk to you simply isn’t worth your custom!

5. Get Estimates Before You Hand Over Your Vehicle

Handing in your vehicle to an auto repair shop without getting estimates is a rookie mistake and leaves you open to being ripped off. Always, always, always, get yourself a few estimates from different shops. If one seems wildly higher than the others, ask them why—there may be a perfectly good reason, but it could also mean they are overcharging you. Not getting an estimate also means they can add charges to your bill that you didn’t expect, so always ask for an itemized breakdown of the bill before you say yes to any work being done.

Auto repair shops are daunting places that can be confusing for those that don’t know much about cars. However, with these five simple tips, you’ll definitely pick the best auto repair shop for your needs and avoid being ripped off by untrustworthy businesses. If you’re looking for a trusted and honest quote for any vehicle repair in Philadelphia and surrounding areas, check out our website here at JD’s Auto Repair, or give us a call today!

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