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Wednesday, October 24, 2007
How to Find a Good Mechanic
Autumn is always a great time to care for your car. The fall months let vehicle owners undo the wear and tear of summer's stop-and-go conditions, and at the same time get ready for harsher weather ahead. Because of today's busy schedules and complex vehicles, most people hire professionals to do automotive repair and service rather than trying to do it themselves.
These tips, from the non-profit National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), the group that tests and certifies automotive technicians on choosing a repair facility, will help you choose the right mechanic:
• The right time to start shopping for a repair facility is before you need one.
• Solicit recommendations from your friends, associates, and local consumer groups.
• Search for a clean, well-organized shop with vehicles equal in value to your own in the parking lot, and with modern gear in the service bays.
• Locate a courteous staff that will answer all of your questions.
• Inquire about policies on repair cost estimates, diagnostic fees, guarantees and acceptable methods of payment.
• Determine whether the repair shop specializes in or frequently performs the repairs you need.
• Try to find signs of professionalism in the customer-service area such as civic, community or customer-service awards.
• Search for technicians who are qualified, with trade school diplomas, certificates of advanced coursework and ASE certification.
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