In a perfect world, all drivers would know a thing or two about engine maintenance and repairs. Along with our high school math, science and English classes, students would learn the basics of car mechanics, and be able to perform the vital tasks of vehicle maintenance before they ever stepped foot in the DMV.
However, most people know very little about what’s going on under the hood. Additionally, the basics of auto maintenance are getting far more complicated as our engines get more efficient, compact and technologically advanced. That’s why it’s so important for drivers to do the research and legwork it takes to find a good mechanic.
Where do we start?
Talk to your friends, your family, your neighbors and everyone in between.
Peruse the reviews on Yelp, Google, Angie’s List and other websites. You can find some really great, honest advice here. However, it’s best to take any online advice with a grain of salt. Many trashy, unwarranted comments make their way onto the internet. At the same time, many fake reviews are written to improve a business’s online reputation. Most of the time, the intentions are easy to spot and the truly good advice shines through.
There are many car clubs devoted to specific makes and models. Look up the local car club listings for your car’s make, model and year number. The fine folks in these passionate car owner clubs will usually steer you in the right direction.
Visit your local mechanics for a sneak peak into their garage. If you see clean, classic cars with rebuilt engines, you’ve probably stumbled into a passionate, dedicated mechanic. If you see a mess of rusty clunkers and disorganized chaos in a poorly lit garage, you might be dealing with poor management and unhappy workers.
Talk to the people working on your car. You’re paying good money to be able to drive. You’ve invested in a vehicle, insurance, registration and more. You will be paying for maintenance and repairs. You will want someone you can trust, as well as someone who knows how to work on your specific car. Many old timers don’t know much about newer engines and all their electronic quirks, while many younger mechanics lack the experience it takes to keep up an old, classic Chrysler.
Finding a good mechanic is like embarking on a quest for the Holy Grail. It may seem like an impossible feat, but if Monty Python could do it then so can you.