Tip & How-To about Buick Skylark

How to talk to your mechanic or repairnam and save money.

This is a tip that anyone can learn from no matter what profession your in. In order to get the best service understand what you are paying for and be able to clearly identify unusual sounds noises smells vibrations and any thing that your equipment is doing that should not be doing. This will help the technician to go to the problem quickly locate the problem and fix it fast and correct the first time. You can report these issues to them write them down or print out all of the things I have mentioned this will save you MONEY!

Here are things to mention to a mechanic as a car has more moving parts I will use it as an example, the general rules can be used for troubleshooting home appliances, stereos computers and any tool made that is power electric or air. So here goes.

1. If it's a car and it has a smell try to describe the smell using your 5 senses will hep the mechanic look for the problem using his, with bout of you in tune with smells, vibrations colors of oils or fluids it will lead him to a much faster diagnostic time this is the most costly item on cars especially on newer computerized cars.

2. if it's a leak place a piece of cardboard down between the wheels mark on the card board front driver side and passenger side. What this will do is allow you to drive onto the cardboard and see where the leak is and the color the leak is. this will for example tell the mechanic if it's transmission fluid power steering fluid brake fluid or gear oil from the differential or transfer case. or the steering wheel gear box.

3. If you have a vibration write down when it does it, what speed oe does it do it all the time, is your steering wheel straight? did you bump into a curb? knocking off wheel weights for balance or a bent rim. or a bent steering linkage. With this information it will directly lead the mechanic to the problem much faster and finding the problem is sometimes the most difficult problem.

4. Ask that they give you a written estimate do not go by just your word, By law they must have written permission to do a repair and it must have your signature on the work order so do not sign the work order till you have the estimate it will cost and how long it will be, you can have them write on the repair order that they can go over a certain amount without calling you but if they find more issues they may need to do more repairs or replace parts that wore out because of failure of other parts.

5. Once a price is given and you have agreed to the price ask about how long the warranty for the work is for, if they use new parts the warranty should be 1 year if it's rebuilt parts that is used it should be 6 months if it's from a recycle place it may be only 30 days. Depending on the price you may want to replace the car rather than fixing it, now is the time to save money, when they give you the estimate if you don't plan on keeping the car for more than a year it may be better to turn it in as a trade in. At this time if you do not decide to do the work the mechanic will charge you a minimum shop charge depending on how much work he had to do to find out what it was going to cost.

6. Understanding the costs involved in making repairs on cars today will help you understand better that the mechanic is not trying to take advantage of you he is out to make a living and has overhead to pay for and a list follows so you get an understanding of why things cost as much and why they do some things you may think is not necessary.

First Cars Starting from 1987 have had computers added on to them these have to be checked first thing, the reason as time goes on all compotes in the car have been replaced with electronic controls, fuel injectors, cam position sensors coil packs coil pack triggering diodes and as many as five 02 sensors with ambient air temperature and mass air flow sensors, Fuel pressure regulators electric fuel pumps and many other components that can be adjusted or updated as needed for adjusting driving conditions. So They will probely or scan the computer for trouble codes that the check engine light might not see, these are soft codes that only a $2500.00 Scanner can read as well the scanner captures live data so the mechanic may have to drive the car to see live fault or codes in order to correct the problem. this takes time and money some cars have as many as 20 on board computers on a single wire so the mechanic must spend a considerable amount of time educating himself and or his employees to test that they have the expertise to fix your unit in a timely and cost effective solution.

Last points to make is once you find someone you can work with they will be able to tell you who are good sores of repairs for other items in your house as they have things that go bad too. Treat them with respect and be open ad honest most mechanics are not out to hurt you just make a living.
The Nature of auto repairs requires a mechanic to spend a vast amount of time using scanners to pinpoint a parts defect to save money on just throwing parts on the car till they get it fixed. In general use a mechanic who has a shop and has been in business for at least 5 years be sure that the shop is neat and clean if the shop looks trashy it is a sign that you may not be satisfied with their quality of work. For instance they may change your radio stations rest your mirrors get oil on you carpet or seats or do things in a sloppy manner that would make you angry if you kid did the damage to your carpet or paint. Understanding this before going to a shop will help you and the mechanic you work with have a much better relationship and will save you money over the long haul. I hope this is informative to you the coustmer as your life and billfold will stay happy and comfortable.

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