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Avoiding being ripped off: How to choose a good mechanic

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Whether you’re a new driver or have been driving for more years than you can even remember and whatever the state of your car I am sure you will agree that nothing is worse the breaking down or discovering your vehicle has a serious problem. From those who drive daily to those who casually drive only on the weekends; your car is important and can simply make life a whole lot easier but when something goes wrong and we realise that a visit to the mechanic is on the card we will immediately be filled with dread.

Both bad experiences and rumours have contributed to a serious fall in the reputation of mechanics. A car is a complex machine and unless qualified ourselves it can be impossible to know everything but with so many stories of having been ripped off or finding that your car is in worse condition then it was in when you first arrived; there are too many horror situations that make us fear our mechanics.

Unfortunately, as with many things in life, a small percentage has caused a great problem for the rest of us. Not all mechanics are crooks and not all mechanics are out to rip you off, in fact here at Central Audi VW nothing gives us more pride then providing a flawless service and having every customer leave with a smile.

With that in mind however we do understand that for many reasons customers can be sceptical. If you are looking for a new mechanic and want to ensure that you entrust your vehicle in the right hands then consider the following…

  • Recommendations- If you are struggling to find a reliable mechanic then speak to friends and family. Many of your nearest and dearest will no doubt drive and as a result will have had to have visited a mechanic at some point or another so why not ask them who they trust?
  • Reviews- In today’s internet obsessed age you can discover anything at the click of a button so why not use it to your advantage? Almost every mechanic/garage will have some form of online presence whether a website or social media. Keep an eye on these to find out what people are saying. Are there some positive reviews on the website? Are angry customers being ignore on social media? Do some digging to put your mind at ease.
  • Accreditations- Professionalism and experience are often a great indicator of a good mechanic. From the Motor Industry Code of Practice to the Retail Motor Industry Federation; good mechanics will have a range of professional accreditations that can put your mind your mind at ease and prove that they are from back door salesmen!

We understand that having to visit a mechanic is never easy but it doesn’t always have to be a rip off. Do some digging and know what to look for and there is no reason why you can’t choose a reliable and trusted mechanic.

Thomas Robson is the development Manager at Central Audi VW; Birmingham’s leading Audi, VW, SEAT and Skoda specialists. From MOT to car servicing, the specialist mechanics can provide everything you need.

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Jeremiah can change your oil, fix your computer and quote every line from the Star Wars films, like the Renaissance Man that he is. He's the proud parent of two Great Danes and one daughter.