When it comes to used vehicles, they often (not always) tend to have more difficulties and malfunctions that need fixing than a new car. New cars are under warranty as well, making bringing them back to dealerships for maintenance easy and inexpensive. However, used cars may be costly in repairs and it is important to find a repair shop that a customer knows he/she can trust for honesty and accuracy for repairs.
According to a recent survey from AAA, fifty-four percent of United States drivers keep their vehicles past warranties, rather than investing in a new vehicle. Once a car is out of warranty, the owner is responsible for all repairs and maintenance on the car. When keeping a used vehicle, owners also usually upkeep the maintenance on the car to avoid more costly issues in the future.
AAA Automotive experts have made a list to share how to select a repair facility; one that can be hopefully trusted to do right by the customer. AAA believes that customers should take their time and do the research necessary to find a high-quality, full-service repair shop and allow a trusting relationship to be formed. AAA believes that this will ultimately save customers money over the long run on their vehicles.
AAA shares that the best time to look for a trustworthy repair shop is before the car owner needs one. That way the owner can take his/her time in finding the right shop and not be pressured into using any shop out of desperation. Two quick ideas on how to do this are to get recommendations from family and friends or visit AAA.com/repair to find nearby AAA Approved Auto Repair (AAR) shops.
AAA Automotive experts recommend that drivers consider these ten areas when selecting a repair shop. These are three different kinds of repair facilities that drivers can use for repair and maintenance on their cars and each have pros and cons. Facilities that offers car owners service can be dealerships (knowledgeable and qualified, but usually most expensive), independents (qualified, less expensive, easier to develop relationships) and specialists (can focus on specific vehicles, efficient and effective service providers).
AAA says to look for the (1) shop types that fit your needs best, (2) clean, well-organized, professional appearing shops, (3) shops that have comfortable waiting areas and clean rest rooms with amenities such as pick up and drop off for customer convenience, (4) shops that have qualified and skilled technicians who receive ongoing training in the latest technology and have certifications from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) or from the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) posted on the walls, (5) shops with up-to-date service equipment and repair data, Internet access to repair information or an on-site service information library of CD/DVD ROMs, (6) shops with a good reputation with the Better Business Bureau and state department of consumer affairs or Attorney General's office, (7) shops that offers discounts on needed mainentance (8) shops that offer at least a 12-month/12,000-mile parts and labor national warranties on their work. (9) shops with visible AAA Approved Auto Repair (AAR) signs and (10) shops that allow test-drives once your they fix or maintain your vehicle.
In a press release, John Nielsen, AAA Director of Automotive Repair made this statement: "Drivers can take comfort in the knowledge that their vehicle will be serviced by trained professionals who can identify any potential problems. This helps prevent breakdowns, and often saves money by allowing drivers to make a small repair now rather than a much bigger one later. As a repair shop's technicians get to know a vehicle and its owner, they can also give valuable advice on any upcoming work that will be needed.”