Monthly Archives: September 2016

Hiring the Right Professional Auto Shop For Your Car

An auto repair shop such as auto repair Surprise AZ is designed to offer solutions for vehicles that require maintenance and repair. However, the question is how to select the right auto repair shop for you and your vehicle? Auto repair shops, also known as auto repair garages, can range in size and service. Some are operated by sole proprietors with a few essential tools. Other garages hire large teams of experienced technicians with the latest tools and equipment to repair all levels of technical issues. Still, others may offer specialized services that promise to restore your vehicle to factory specifications. With such a wide variety of auto repair shops serving your area, it may be difficult to choose the best one to repair your vehicle. That is why we offer these helpful tips to follow when choosing an auto repair shop.

Work With Those You Like:

If you like the people on the auto repair team, chances are that you’ll have a terrific customer service experience. Though professionalism, experience, and knowledge are all key points for deciding upon an auto repair shop, most people want to work with people they like and with whom they can feel a common bond. To gain quick insight, look online at any existing customer reviews or testimonials to see what they had to say about their experience. If you like what you read in the customer reviews, chances are very good that you will form a nice relationship with the staff of your selected auto repair shop.

Find Out How Long Repairs

The speed at which repair work can take may be a big factor in your auto shop selection process. If you find a terrific auto repair shop that does great work and does it quickly, that is a great experience. If, however, they take too long to fix your vehicle, the lengthy waiting time could whittle away your confidence in their repair processes. Getting an estimate to see how long their auto repair service may take can help a save a great deal of time and money.

Ask The Right Questions:

When visiting an auto repair shop, it is essential to ask questions that are specific to your vehicle. To make certain you don’t forget to ask a question, write them all down on a piece of paper and take notes. If you are visiting an auto body repair shop, for example, get an estimate based on the amount of damage and the time it will take to restore it. Ask if they offer any discounts for first-time or returning customers. You may also ask if they offer warranties or guarantees and what those cover.

Verify Their Credibility:

Find out if the auto repair shop is using the newest and most advanced tools or technology. Ask where their various vehicular parts and tools come from. Also, ask them to list their references, or if they are active members of auto industry associations. Many reputable auto repair shops are happy to provide a list of testimonials that highlight their work history. Similarly, you can verify the credibility of your auto shop by asking the opinions of other technicians and auto shop personnel that work in the same area.
Request An Estimate:

Before choosing an auto repair shop, ask for an estimate. Different auto shops can offer a wide range of estimates. Though asking each auto shop to provide you with an estimate can be time consuming, you are more likely to end up with the best price when you call several auto repair shops. When requesting an estimate, ask them to put it in writing. If any auto shop is reluctant to offer a written estimate, you should avoid hiring them. A well established auto repair shop would readily produce an estimate and a thorough explanation of how they arrived at their estimate. Requesting an estimate can help remove doubts and uncertainties about what is to be expected when they repair your vehicle.

Hiring the Right professional Auto Body Shop

It’s not uncommon for estimates from different body shops to vary wildly. One shop might give you an estimate for $500 while another wants $2,000 for the work. What’s the difference? And when is it OK to choose the cheaper shop?Here are some of his tips for choosing the right shop like collision Tucson AZ to work on your car  particularly when you’re the one paying the bills.

1) Ask the Right Questions
When choosing a body shop, “you don’t go in with your pocketbook open,” Mallette explains. “You go in smart,” and ask some key questions. Does the shop provide a written warranty? And if so, for how long? What does the warranty cover?

A one-year warranty is a minimum, Mallette says. His shop offers a two-year warranty for body work and a three-year warranty for complete paint jobs. Some shops offer lifetime warranties as a selling point, but that isn’t realistic, he says.

“Most of the stipulations and conditions those warranties require are more restrictive than the majority of people can adhere to,” he says. “So basically, the warranty becomes useless.”

Another key question is whether the shop carries fire and theft insurance. You want to be sure you’re covered if your car is destroyed, stolen or burglarized. Don’t forget to ask how long the shop has been in business. Make sure it has a business license.

You will also want to know about the materials the shop intends to use. Are new, used or aftermarket body parts going to be used? New parts are obviously the best and used parts are fine, though they don’t offer the savings people imagine. Depending on the damage to your vehicle, aftermarket parts can save a lot of money and can be just as good as the ones that come from the original manufacturer. If paint work is involved, ask how many coats of paint and clear coat the shop intends to use.

2) Follow Your Intuition
Finally, it’s important to trust your intuition about the shop you’re considering. If a shop isn’t busy, maybe that’s because customers are avoiding it because of shoddy repairs. If the place is really dirty, cluttered or disorganized, this might reflect the kind of work you could expect the shop to do with your car. Is the shop owner or manager a grouch who seems to resent answering your questions? You’ll be happier with a shop where the owner communicates well and is straightforward with customers.

3) Pay Attention to Word-of-Mouth
Any business can advertise, but you’ll do better with a shop that friends, family or acquaintances recommend. It’s a business that has proven it can satisfy customers. And it might not be the biggest or best-known shop in your area.

Mallette went to a shop years ago on such recommendations and found that the owner was a “real stand-up guy…. He doesn’t advertise on the Internet; it’s a family-owned shop,” Mallette says. “But, golly, if you take your car there, you’ll get a fair price.”

In some cases, you might get a recommendation for a small shop where the owner works on the cars himself.

4) Consider the Operation’s Location and Overhead
“Where you get screwed in our business is labor hours,” Mallette explains. His shop charges $40 per hour for labor. But in ritzy parts of West Los Angeles, the per-hour labor charge is $60-$65. In wealthy Newport Beach, California, Mallette has heard of $90-per-hour labor charges.

Large body shops with a lot of front-office workers probably have to charge higher rates to pay their staff. While service delivered by front-desk folks, managers and foremen gives some people a feeling of confidence in the business, it can result in estimates that are padded with non-essential work. When they’re charging more labor hours at a higher rate, your bill can add up quickly.

In his shop, Mallette says he does things by the book  literally. Body shops and garages use reference guides that estimate the number of hours required to perform common repairs.

By contrast, the higher-end shops might decide to charge for everything in “the gray area,” meaning those things that they might have to do to fix the problem. In Mallette’s example, high-end estimates might include a charge for time spent removing the hood and the door, while his judgment call is not to perform this additional work.

5) Get Several Estimates
Taking your car to several auto body shops for repair quotes is the best way to avoid overcharges, Mallette notes. “I’ll tell people to go get some estimates and bring ’em back to me. I’ll match estimates if I can.”

And while it’s important to protect against being overcharged, you shouldn’t simply take the lowest quote. “You might get some kind of midnight guy who will say he can do it really cheap,” he says. “Stay away from those guys, because there is something they’re not doing. You could have major problems down the road.”