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When you need your car fixed, you usually need it done as soon as you can. That’s why it’s important for you to not only know what needs to be done, but how you will get it repaired. Whether you will do the repairs or plan to take it to a mechanic, here are some smart auto repair tips.

Be sure your mechanic has an A.S.E. certification prior to letting them fix your car. An ASE certification means your mechanic has a minimum of two years’ experience in auto repairs. This certification also requires that he or she passes a written test. This is a good way of finding a qualified mechanic who will care about doing a good job so they can keep their certification.

It is not legal for a mechanic to start working on your car before you officially authorize them to do so, usually by signing a contract. Be careful what you authorize the mechanic to do. You should only sign documents that include a detailed list of the needed repairs and their prices.

If you’re performing your own repairs underneath a car and have it raised in the air, ensure that the lifting device you use is secure. Never lift a car that is not on level ground or on a firm surface. Always use jackstands in the proper position and never solely rely on a jack to keep a car raised off the ground.

It is not legal for a mechanic to start working on your car before you officially authorize them to do so, usually by signing a contract. Be careful what you authorize the mechanic to do. You should only sign documents that include a detailed list of the needed repairs and their prices.

Don’t get sucked into to the lure of aftermarket parts for new cars. You want your baby to run as well as possible for as long as possible, and that means spending the extra to get parts that match the ones already in your car. Trying to get that clunker to run just a few more miles? Save the money and take the aftermarket versions.

Have records for your car on hand. It’s a good idea to place them in the vehicle you drive just in case you’re in need of repairs while you’re out and about. Any mechanic who works on your car is going to want to see them. It will aid them in figuring out any issues.

If your car needs body work, make sure you know what color paint you have on your vehicle. This information is important for the technician that works on your car. Also, your vehicle identification number is always something good to have on hand. In many cases, you will have to have it just to set up an appointment.

Prior to leaving your car for a diagnosis, ask the repair shop about any fees associated with it. The auto repair shop absolutely has the right to charge a diagnosis fee, in fact it’s pretty standard. Though, if it seems out of line with other prices in your area, you may want to go to another shop.

Replacing a charcoal canister is very expensive, but you can easily replace this part yourself. Take off the wheel located under your fuel tank and disconnect the vacuum lines connected to the old canister. The part should then come right off. Install the new one and connect the lines very carefully before installing the wheel again.

Your car owners manual is actually a valuable guide to the workings of your car. That means that you should not trash it as soon as you leave the dealer. It can tell you everything from what that light on your dash means, to how to perform basic maintenance on your particular model.

Before allowing anyone to do work on your vehicle, have them checked out by the Better Business Bureau. If you find out that a lot of people have been complaining about the mechanic that you have in mind, that is definitely a sign that you should look somewhere else to get the work done.

Keep your auto repair shops business card in your car at all times. You never know when something could go wrong with your vehicle. You’ll want your favorite auto shop’s phone number handy, though, when it does. Another option is to program all of their contact information in your phone.

Make sure your car is ready for winter. The cold can be very hard on the vehicle’s system so you should properly maintain it. Some things you should do are check the tires, check the antifreeze, replace old wipers, and inspect windshield washer fluid. Driving is hard enough in the winter, so make things easier by making sure your vehicle can handle the harsher weather conditions.

If you need to get your vehicle fixed, choose a garage or a dealership that hires certified technicians. The person who runs the place might have a certification but this does not mean that certified people will work on your car. Choosing certified technicians is a good way of making sure qualified people are fixing your car.

Invest in a detailed repair manual for your vehicle. Even if you are not comfortable enough to fix your car yourself, you will at least get a better idea of how your car runs and perhaps diagnose a few problems yourself. Being knowledgeable will help you recognize an honest mechanic too.

Remember, you are owed an estimate before any work occurs on your car. If you did not receive an estimate and work did begin, do not feel obligated to move forward with any sort of payment. Move onto a more reputable auto shop as soon as possible if this occurs.

You will have many options as to where you want your car fixed. Dealerships are more expensive, but they often know more about your type of vehicle. Independent garages are cheaper, but you could hire a company that’s dishonest.

Hopefully, you have learned a lot on how to fix your car problems and how to choose the right professional. Now that you are armed with this advice, you should be able to resolve any problems you are having now and any future ones you may have. Utilize this advice, and enjoy a better car.