TIP! Before allowing an auto shop to do repairs to your vehicle, ensure you are aware of the total cost. If something is unclear, have the mechanic or service counter rep clarify it for you before any work is done on the car.

If you are like many people, then you probably are not an expert in auto repair. Since this is the case, you should properly educate yourself on this subject so you can do some of the minor maintenance that your car may need. This article can help you navigate the confusing world of auto repair.

TIP! Make sure that you wash your car frequently to reduce rust and corrosion. Rust is an inevitability, but you can stave it off for a good while.

Invest in a quality battery charger and always keep it in your car. This is a common cause of breakdowns, and carrying a charger helps other drivers as well as yourself. Take a few minutes to learn how to use it properly before you get in a situation where you need to use it.

TIP! It is a good idea to use referrals to find a decent mechanic. Get recommendations from family and friends.

Check the radiator regularly. Let the car run briefly, shut the engine, then open the hood. Don’t open your radiator cap if your car is on. With a dipstick, check your radiator fluid. Before adding more coolant remember to mix it with water.

TIP! Have records for your car on hand. These should be kept in the glove compartment of your vehicle for easy access out on the road.

It is important that you fully understand what all the charges will be upfront, before handing the mechanic your car keys. Should you need clarification about the repairs, speak with the service manager or your mechanic before work begins. You don’t want to get the car back, only to be shocked at how much the repairs cost you.

TIP! Test drive your vehicle after repairs before paying the auto repair shop. Skipping this step is a common error that causes folks to end up with the same issue they have paid to have fixed.

You don’t always need a mechanic when your car is having problems. There are many things you can fix easily. If you are game, then check online to research the problem. If the job is not complicated, make the repairs yourself to save money.

Unnecessary Repairs

TIP! A spare tire and a jack are valuable items to have in case of an emergency. Most of the new cars of today have them in the trunk.

Be wary of unscrupulous mechanics who make unnecessary repairs to your vehicle. Good mechanics will inform you of parts wearing down that need replaced soon, but they won’t replace them without getting your approval first. Do not take your care twice to a mechanic who performed some unnecessary repairs.

TIP! Is a work-at-home mechanic a viable option? Mechanics who work from home are often able to charge less because they don’t have the overhead that shops do. This savings in labor costs can add up to hundreds.

Ask for parts that are classified as OEM parts. These parts are original and from the manufacturer. Although generic parts are more affordable, OEM parts are better quality and will last longer. Generic parts could end up costing you more in the long run.

TIP! Look at flashing lights on your dashboard and learn what each one signifies. They were put there for your assistance, so use them for that.

Watch out for blatant signs that your mechanic is not to be trusted. If they tend to talk in circles or ignore your questions, then they might not be all that you want them to be. It is important to have full confidence in the competence of your mechanic. If you don’t, then move on to a better choice.

TIP! Check the air pressure in your tires when you fill your gas tank. Make sure that your tires are not punctured in any way.

A burned out headlight or taillight is a common repair. This can usually be done yourself. This process is easier in specific vehicles and harder in others; however, doing this yourself is much more affordable than visiting a mechanic. Ask someone you know if they can instruct you on how to do it.

TIP! Warranties are vital when your car gets fixed, particularly if your parts are expensive. Ask the mechanic about the parts’ warranty.

Think about using a mechanic who works from home. For basic repairs they can charge far less and you both can be happy. You could save a lot of money this way.

TIP! If money is especially tight and you are desperate to get your car repaired, consider contacting the auto repair department of your local vocational school. This gives you the option of paying less for a repair while students get the opportunity to practice under a licensed mechanic’s supervision.

There is no real benefit to getting repairs done at the dealer. There are great techs everywhere whether there’s a great shop 10 minutes from your house or whether you decide to go to the dealer further away. If you feel comfortable with someone, use them.

TIP! There’s no reason why simple maintenance, such as topping off engine oil or adding windshield wiper fluid, can’t be done on your own. You can do these routine maintenance jobs yourself.

Now that you’ve read this, you should know more about auto repair. You should now feel more confident in finding a good mechanic or tackling the problem yourself. Your car will run well for many years to come!