Not a single person is ever excited to take their car to a mechanic. More often than not, you go to a local mechanics shop only when your car needs repair work done. Although most of us already work with a trustworthy mechanic, it can be hard for the rest of us to find a decent and reliable mechanic.
Sadly, the customers that tend to be most vulnerable to mechanic scams are women. With so much of the automotive industry being male-dominated, many female customers are not treated equally as their male counterparts.
Often times, many mechanics take advantage of a consumers lack of knowledge to charge them higher price, especially women.
If you are a woman concerned about a mechanic overcharging you or ripping you off, here are some steps you can take:
Get a Second Opinion
If you took your car to a local mechanic and get a larger than expected bill, its best to take your car into another shop for a second estimate. Almost all legitimate shops will offer you an estimate that includes the cost of parts and labor. Even if you have trusted this mechanic before with previous work, it’s smart to get a second opinion.
I thought I had a trustworthy mechanic for years until I found out recently that he did not do the work requested. Take the written estimate to another shop as well, they could offer to beat their prices by 10% or more.
Read Your Owner’s Manual
Many shops make their profits from a cars maintenance routine. If you come in for an oil change and the mechanic’s shop tells you that your car is due for service, check the owner’s manual. Your car’s manufacturer has heavily tested your car, and will outline what routine services need to be completed at what times.
Items such as fluid changes (besides oil) are not changed too often, so be sure to refer to your owners manual.
If you do not have your cars owners manual, you can simply search your car on Google with something like “1999 Honda Accord V6 Owners Manual”, and you should be able to find many copies online for free.
Keep Old Parts
If you agree to have a certain part replaced, tell your mechanic to keep the old parts. This ensures that the technician has actually replaced the part, and that the labor was actually performed. Almost all auto parts also have a distinctive part number attached to them.
If you simply Google the part number, make sure its the same part the mechanic described himself replacing.
All in all, it can be hard to find a trustworthy mechanic. If you are still worried about a mechanic ripping you off, I would recommend you bring a close friend or family member along to help ensure fairness. If you are looking to buy a new car but are in need of financing, CrediReady can help.
Our nationwide network of trusted dealers and verified lenders work with buyers in all credit situations. Take a moment to fill out our free no-obligation loan inquiry form and start shopping for your dream car today!