If you want to learn how to take care of your car, sometimes the best solution is to talk to a professional. Rather than damaging your car through fixing it yourself, learn how to call upon a reliable mechanic. Read this article for tips on how to do just that.
If your vehicle begins making a louder noise than usual, you should suspect the muffler needs replacing. This is a job best done at a shop because it is difficult to work under a car without a lift. You can get a warning or even a ticket if your muffler sounds too loud.
Thoroughly review your car manual. During auto repair visits, your mechanic will probably need to gather some information from you, about your vehicle. You may even find, when you read the manual, that what you think is an issue is easily fixed.
Protect your car from water damage. Take the time to make sure all windows and doors are properly closed. Keep your car on higher ground if you live in an area that’s easily flooded. If you have sandbags, build a wall around your car. Don’t drive in areas with high water levels. Don’t start your car if it’s been exposed to flood waters.
When you top off your motor oil, avoid spilling oil on your engine by wadding up a couple of paper towels around the oil receptacle on the crank-case. This will absorb drips and spills. Be sure to dispose of your empty oil container and the paper towels responsibly when finished adding oil.
Do not hover over the technician while they are trying to do work on your car. It is important that you spend time with them to explain what the problem is with your vehicle, but once you have done that, leave them alone so they can do their job without any interruptions.
Always have a repair kit located in your car; you can put one together yourself. The tools you need include tire changing equipment, which usually come with a car. A lug wrench and a jack are essential. You may ask want to get a variety of screwdrivers, ratchets, socket wrenches and the like. Avoid cheap tools. Buy quality, reliable tools that are not going to break.
Make sure you know where your owner’s manual is and use it! If there is a problem with your car, you will be lost without it. Sometimes, an issue is simply a result of a lack of understanding. Pick it up, read through it, and see if you can figure out what is going on.
Stick with Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) components. If your car needs parts, choose OEM parts over generic ones. For optimum performance, you should have the OEM parts that are up to the manufacturer’s standards. While generic parts are cheaper, they’re generally a lower quality than the original ones. This means that you may pay more later for replacements.
Consider how well kept an auto repair shop is when making your decisions. A sloppy shop can be a sign that the workmanship you’re about to receive will be pretty sloppy as well. Opt for the auto repair shop that keeps its floors and space clean of tools and rubble. It’s not a guarantee of great workmanship, but it’s a sure sign that your chances are better that you’ll receive the service levels you’d like.
You should always pay attention to the way your car smells. An unpleasant smell is usually caused by a leak or an electrical short. It is best not to drive your car and find a mechanic who can come inspect it to determine what is causing the strong smell.
Know what your manufacturer recommends for your car. If you take your vehicle in to get fixed, and you receive contradictory information, go somewhere else. You can also call the technician on the discrepancy. Ask them why they are saying something different than the manufacturer. There could be a good reason, or they could be simply trying to talk around you.
If your key “sticks” when you put it in the ignition, you will most likely need a new ignition switch as soon as possible. Having your key stick usually indicates that the switch is failing. If that switch is not fixed in a timely fashion, you could get stranded somewhere.
Always ask for an estimate in writing before you agree to have any work done. This way, if the shop tries to charge you more later you will have the estimate to prove what you had agreed on. Some shops do this on a regular basis, so be sure to protect yourself by getting it in writing.
If you need to have your car towed, look for more details in the user’s manual. Some cares should always be toward backwards while other absolutely need to be mounted onto a flat bed. Let the tow truck driver know in advance to make sure he has the proper equipment.
When you want to interview potential auto repair shops, the best time to visit is between nine in the morning and lunch time. After nine, just about all of the repair work for the day has been dropped off and started. Techs will be working during the morning hours, but after lunch they will begin calling vehicle owners to discuss repairs and costs. For this reason, 9 – 12 is the least busy time to talk with auto repair shop staff.
Before giving your business to any auto repair service, you should inquire about how much the labor rate is and how much for parts. This will help give you an idea of what your bill is likely to be so there won’t be any unexpected surprises. It also allows you to compare them with other services.
A mechanic can be your best friend if your car is acting up and you are not sure how to fix it yourself. The tips in this article should have given you some guidance on this matter. Remember them the next time you find yourself in need of auto repair!