Nuts and Bolts #3

So now you’ve dropped off your car and a couple of hours later the phone rings and it’s the mechanic. Of course you’re nervous because the possibility of bad news looms large, but know this, no matter how they act on the other end of the line, they’re nervous too. Let’s say you’ve told them the car was making a noise in the right front wheel when you dropped it off, at this point the mechanic has spent some time disassembling the front of the vehicle and the last thing they want to hear is that you don’t want it fixed and they’ve wasted their time. Of course we’re assuming they’re honest and not just fabricating a repair after they fixed something minor in 3 minutes (another reason to pre-check the noise, you might actually see what it is). The mechanic tells you that you need this and that and this and it’s going to cost the same price as that front loading washer/dryer, or Louboutins, or Ipad you’ve had your eye on (you each know who you are). 

 The best response you can have at this point is to go into question mode. Here are some of the questions you’ll want answered: how did this happen?,- can we just change a few of those parts instead of all?, -can  we do part of the job today and wait on some of it?, -is there a way to do it cheaper? (we’ll get into that discussion later) and of course, CAN YOU GIVE ME A BETTER PRICE? Now the most important thing you could do at this time, you might not actually be able to, but if you can, the next words that come out of your mouth should be “OK, I’LL BE RIGHT OVER SO YOU CAN SHOW ME”! If you can’t get there then say “PLEASE SAVE ALL THE PARTS SO I CAN SEE THEM”.

Another good thing to do at this time is go online and Google the parts they’ve told you they’re changing so you can be familiar with what they look like (I’ll explain why in the next edition).

ZING! Now you have really taken control of the situation.



About dontgetwrenched

Elayne Kling, was the owner of a downtown Manhattan auto repair shop for 25 years and recently in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Elayne knows the particular ins and outs of the auto repair world and keeps up her blog because people will always need help navigating the potential pitfalls of that world. Due to the crazy NYC real estate market she has since closed down her shop and started a new business called Projects Unlimited Inc., helping other small businesses.
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