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The majority of people that are in need of auto repairs don’t have a clue what’s wrong with the vehicle. Most of the time it’s difficult to know what’s wrong with a vehicle until the auto technician has a chance to diagnose the problem.

There are two steps to be taken to get the best prices for auto repairs. The first step is done before the vehicle is taken to the auto repair shop. The second step is performed after the diagnosis is made to the vehicle.

Step One – Before the Vehicle’s Taken to the Auto Repair Shop

When taking a car to an auto repair shop, the service advisor will usually advise the customer that there will be a diagnosis charge. The diagnosis charge can very widely from one auto repair shop to another. Call a few local shops and find out what they charge to diagnose the problem. Here are a few things to ask an auto repair shop to help find the best bargain.

  • How much will it cost to diagnose the problem (state problem)?
  • What is the shops hourly labor rate?
  • Are there any other miscellaneous charges like shop supplies or hazardous waste?
  • Are the technicians ASE Certified?
  • What is the warranty on the repairs and is parts and labor covered?

After a few local shops have been contacted, compare notes and pick the best value. Don’t just look at price alone. Going to the auto repair shop with the lowest prices that doesn’t stand behind their work, could end up costing more in the long run.

Step Two – After the Vehicle’s Been Diagnosed by the Auto Repair Shop

Once the cars been diagnosed, the service advisor will let the customer know what the repairs will cost. Ask the service advisor for a break down of what the repair entails. Ask for an itemized list of each part along with the price for each part that needs to be replaced. Find out how much the labor will cost to replace each part on the itemized list.

After the repair costs are itemized, call a few local auto repair shops. Ask if they can do any better on the price to repair the vehicle. If better pricing is found at another repair shop, go back to the shop that diagnosed the vehicle and see if they’ll match the prices. If they can’t at least match the prices, let them know that the vehicle will be taken out of their shop and repaired elsewhere. Chances are good that the original auto repair shop will at least meet the prices.

If inexpensive routine vehicle maintenance is needed, shop around at some local auto repair shops before hand. Following these simple procedures before and after the vehicle is taken to the repair shop can help to save some substantial money.