According to research, mechanics are the least trusted profession in Britain. A few bad eggs are to blame, but it makes sense to be vigilant. Here are 10 ways you’re being taken for a ride at garages…
Drawing Out Repair Time
Some garages will charge by the hour. If they do, make sure they’re reputable. Dragging out repair times is a simple way of them securing extra fees. Ask them for the average amount of time required, fact check it, and make your decision based on that. If they say it’ll take two hours and call you after five, they’re definitely up to no good.
Exaggerating Light Warnings
An engine light can mean many things. It’s true, it could be indicative of a serious flaw; but it could also be a minor electrical or technical fault. Some dodgy mechanics like to prey upon the unsuspecting by exaggerating the meaning of the warning light. Make sure they carefully explain the problem. If they can’t, it’s a red flag.
A good mechanic explains things clearly and politely. Why? Because this means his or her customers are fully aware of what’s wrong with their vehicle and what’s going to be done about it. Besides, why would they assume their customers have a technical understanding of motor vehicles? Quite simply, they don’t; unless they’re trying to confuse and intimidate.
Concealing The Cost Of Parts
There’s no good reason for a mechanic not to be forthcoming with the costs of replacement parts. If he or she isn’t, it’s because they’re charging you unfairly for them. At the start of the process, they should explain what parts they’ll be replacing and how much they all cost.
No Upfront Quote
After inspecting your vehicle, a decent mechanic will be able to quote you for the necessary works and repairs. If they can’t, it’s due to inexperience or because (worse still) they want to overcharge you later down the line; when you’re more likely to just accept the fee and avoid argument.
Ok, so this in of itself doesn’t make a mechanic a dodgy mechanic. Garages, after all, are businesses and they need to make money. But excessive upselling is definitely poor practice. If your mechanic always tries to throw in an extra feature, product or check, he’s more concerned about getting money out of you than making sure your car is safe.
Allegedly ‘Free’ Services
Many garages will offer ‘free’ services simply so they can ‘find’ faults with your car. Think about it, what would they gain by carrying out car servicing for nothing? That’s precious labour time. In essence, these schemes are just an opportunity to tell you things are wrong with your vehicle and that they need addressing; thereby getting money out of you.
Some dodgy mechanics like charging their customers for…Nothing. They’ll claim to have carried out checks and work which they’ve made up on the spot. After all, how many drivers would be able to tell or have the initiative to properly enquire?
Repairs Without Your Permission
When you go to a garage, mechanics should inspect your car and inform you of any necessary repair work. They’ll explain what it consists of and then provide you with a thorough quote. Dodgy mechanics, however, will conduct repairs on a whim (without consulting you) and then land you with the bill. In simple terms, you should only be paying for repairs you’ve agreed to.
Pretending To Replacing Parts
This is a favourite of dodgy mechanics. They’ll claim to have replaced parts and will charge you for the replacements and labour. The twist is, you guessed it, they haven’t replaced anything. If in any doubt, ask the mechanic to provide proof that the original part is faulty and that they leave any old parts in the boot of your car.
Motoring Costs: A Few Simple Ways You Can Save Money – https://autoserveclub.co.uk/blog/motoring-costs-a-few-simple-ways-you-can-save-money__trashed/
Drivers Have Collectively Spent £25 Million On Motorway Recoveries – https://autoserve.co.uk/motoring-news/drivers-have-collectively-spent-25-million-on-motorway-recoveries/