***communicating with your mechanic***
Once you have found a trusted auto repair shop, the key is communicating with your mechanic and explaining any issues you are having with your vehicle. As the owner, pay attention to the changes and irregularities you see, hear, feel, or smell with your vehicle. These signs, when explained in detail to your mechanic, can make the repair aspect of vehicle ownership easier and more affordable. Some owners think if they tell all of their cars maladies or symptoms, the repair shop will be encouraged to run up the bill, but it tends to be quite the opposite.
Shops usually charge for diagnostic time, and you can save money if you are explicit and descriptive.
It is always important to pay attention to when and how often a problem occurs. The conditions when the problems occur can also help your mechanic pinpoint the issue quicker and more efficiently.
• Before taking the vehicle to a repair facility, write down the symptoms and any performance issues so important information is not overlooked or forgotten.
• Describe the symptoms to the technician. Explain what has been seen, smelled, heard and felt while driving the vehicle. For example, does it vibrate or pull to the left? Explain under what type of driving conditions the problem takes place and how long ago it started.
• When describing symptoms, refer to the driver side and passenger side of the vehicle rather than the right or left side.
• If the vehicle has been serviced recently, bring copies of the previous repair orders rather than trying to explain what work was done.