5 automotive knowledge tips and tricks you need to know
Don't get scammed at your next visit to the shop.
People get ripped off at auto repair shops all the time. Unnecessary work is said to be needed, more expensive parts are used, and so on. There's also ripoffs at dealerships or used car lots when you buy your next ride. There is a belief that women are more targeted than men, and I've personally experienced such judgement (it doesn't help when people think I'm 17 and not 27). Not every shop or dealership will be scummy, but it's better to always walk in armed with knowledge.
I read an article (not on DT) about tips for women to avoid being ripped off at the repair shop. It was written by a woman. And what was her last tip? "Bring a man with you." I hung my head and nearly cried. She had spent the article giving us decent, informational tips, just to end it with a defeatist conclusion. But also, that tip didn't apply to anyone, male or female, who may not have a friend available to tag along; sometimes we have to go alone.
My tips are for everyone so that you can confidently walk in to a shop, or walk out if the situation calls for it. These are the easiest resources I can think of, so I hope you will have fun in learning, especially beginners.
Youtube is your best friend when it comes to all things D.I.Y., and that includes car repairs. You can search anything from how to change a tire, to completely restoring a barn find. My highest recommendation is the channel "ChrisFix". He has everything from deep-cleaning your car, changing all the fluids, replacing brake pads, and much more. His videos are all extremely easy to follow with step-by-step instruction. It's my favorite channel to gain general knowledge of parts and service.
2. Your car's owners manual
This is something I learned from ChrisFix, but I'll pass it on as my second tip. Read your car's owners manual. It contains every piece of information you need to know about your car—the tire size, the types of fluids, and fuel. It tells you about the drive system, towing, security, and literally everything else. You should be familiar with what you're driving. If you've misplaced yours, or you bought a used car that didn't come with it, chances are you will be able to find it online through a Google search, or contact the manufacturer and ask if they can send you one.
3. Research service estimates online
Before you buy a car, do you search for the best price? Hopefully you do! So why not do the same with repairs? When you can't do the repair yourself, or if you don't want to, it will be time to go to the shop.
Websites like Repair Pal and Your Mechanic can help give you a ballpark idea of what you should be paying, based on your type of car and specific services. There are more reputable sites such as Consumer Reports, Kelley Blue Book, and AAA . Again, the trusty Google search comes in handy, and you'll find dozens of estimate websites. Use as many as you like and make a rough list of costs. With this information, you won't be an easy scam target in any shop.
4. Find a small, local mechanic or a certified shop
Another way to avoid getting scammed is to find a small, but reputable mechanic in your area. If you're new to the area, ask your neighbors or coworkers. Sometimes Google won't help in this instance, because the mechanic may be a hidden gem. Find someone you can get to know on a first name basis—one who won't swindle you for money, but who actually cares about fixing cars for people's safety.
Certified shops are another safe option. They must meet certain operational requirements, including following fair pricing business practices.
Of course! There's a wealth of knowledge to be found on here. Hopefully this article provides some. Drivetribers share a constant stream of information, from newsworthy to fun quizzes. Whether you want to read about the latest Porsche or get recommendations on the best wax products, Drivetribe has it all. There's tips on how to choose a car that fits your needs, to today's best deals.
Most of all, it's an inclusive community of people who treat each other with respect. We're all car lovers, no matter how much we know or don't know about the machines. Drivetribe is a place where you can freely ask questions and receive quality answers and feedback. It's a community willing to share information and teach one another around the world.