When Looking For A New Shop, What Questions Should I Ask?

19 11 2015

Dale BertramKeep in mind that the automotive industry doesn’t have any standards for service or repairs. The owner nor mechanic do not have to be certified. This makes it vitally important that you do your research very carefully. Remember…no matter what price you are quoted, someone else can always come in lower but make sure they are a reliable shop that doesn’t just undercut on price…you don’t want them to undercut on service or repair (low bidder is not always a good value). The internet is a great place to start! Look at reviews to help you make your decision. These are some questions that you may want to ask any shop you call for an estimate.

Question #1 Does your shop offer a Warranty?
Warranties are varied. Some range from as short as 90 days to as long as two years or more or 4,000 to 50,000 miles. A longer warranty is always better. Also ask if the warranty covers nationwide break downs, which could be very important if you travel or are on vacation.

Question #2 Does your shop have a Guarantee the repair policy?

I can’t believe the amount of calls we receive from consumers who have had a repair that cost them a lot of money and yet the car wasn’t fixed properly. If the shop did not find, explain and fix your concern, why do you pay for it? You should feel completely in control and understand the tests and repairs being performed or just say no and go somewhere you feel good about. Just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean you save money.

Question #3
Are ALL of the technicians at your shop ASE certified?

There is no certification required to work on your car. Being certified is voluntary only, so when the shop has ASE or other certifications, I believe they are a cut above a shop with non-certified employees.

Question #4 – Does the shop have insurance?
Again, believe it or not, there is no requirement for a shop to carry insurance. If the shop has an accident with your car and has no insurance, you get to pay for it. Most shops are ethical and have insurance, but it never hurts to protect yourself. Always ask when you are shopping around for a new shop.

Question #5 – What brand of parts do you use?
There are many manufacturers of parts. Take brakes for example; I can buy brake pads for as little as $10.00 or as much as $60.00 for the same car. That makes getting an estimate over the phone tricky. The brand of part, the experience or certification of the mechanic replacing the part, is it the right part for your make and model, all have to be considered. This makes prices vary a great deal. I personally would never let our customers leave with inferior parts on their car.

I hope all these points help you the next time you are calling for estimates.  Oftentimes, the great deal costs you more in long run!


Fairway Auto Repair




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