Asking These Questions Will Help You Avoid Costly Mistakes Before Purchasing Any Auto Repair or Maintenance Automotive Service
Question #1: Do they have the most up to date training and diagnostic equipment for your particular make of car?
All their technicians should be ASE Certified, not just the owner or the lead technician. You’ll want to make sure the technician doing your oil change or tire rotation knows what he or she is doing. Most shops hire only entry level technicians to do their oil change service. This can be a disaster if the “Oil Change Tech.” is not trained properly or lazy. All it takes is a little carelessness to double gasket an oil filter or over tighten an oil plug to set you up for a breakdown down the road.
Question #2: Is the service center AAA Auto Repair Approved?
AAA Approved Auto Repair facilities lead the industry by adhering to the most stringent ethical, technical and customer service guidelines in the industry. You can be assured that you’re getting the best possible service with a AAA Approved facility.
Question #3: Do they perform on your vehicle complete maintenance inspections (i.e. at least a 50+ point inspection) when you do a routine service to uncover any other potential problems?
This should be done at no additional cost to you.
Question #4: Are their technicians ASE Certified?
ASE Certification is the standard of excellence in the auto repair industry. Ask how many technicians are certified (i.e. all their technicians should be) and ask the service advisor to show the certificates to you. All the better shops I know of prominently display with pride their technicians ASE certifications. Ask to see their “wall of honor”.
Question #5: Will they offer you a shuttle ride to and from work or home the day your care is being serviced?
All the best shops will offer you shuttle service to and back from your home or business. The worst thing for you is to have to wait many hours in a repair facility for a major repair or maintenance service. Be aware anything beyond a basic oil change service will always take more than an hour. The last thing you want… is to rush your service technician so you can get out the door quick. Quick service can mean sloppy service… so be considerate when setting your schedule. All the best shops are considerate of their customers and consider it part of their “Customer Experience” to shuttle them to home or work with pick up later that same day for most routine services.
Question #6: Will they get your vehicle fixed right the first time and complete the work on the same day for most routine services? And if not… what is their guarantee?
Be careful here… many shops will promise you the sky when it comes to fast service. If a shop manages it work flow properly… they should be able to get you in and out same day better than 95% of the time for most routine services. Typically the only exceptions should be for major engine or suspension work or when parts availability is an issue. Sometimes… things just happen in the work day which may prevent same day delivery of your vehicle. But, this should not be the rule and instead be clearly the exception to the rule!
Question #7: Do they guarantee all their work with “Nationwide Warranty” with at least a 3 year / 36,000 mile warranty?
A nationwide warranty is critical as most break downs occur more than 50 miles from home. It’s absolutely critical that your service work be covered (parts & labor) nationwide. Ask in detail what their guarantee means. Do they guarantee that they will not surprise you with extra charges at the end of the day? Do they guarantee that they will not exceed their estimate for repairs without your expressed approval? What happens if you’re not happy with the repairs? Will they redo the work if you’re not happy? At the end of the day… it they can’t meet your expectations for the repairs or maintenance services… will they refund 100% your money? This is important… if not then I would suggest you find someone that will stand 100% behind their work.