Vehicle and Collision Repair Services Are Tricky. Who Do I Use?
Getting your vehicle repaired after it has been involved in an accident or it just isnt operating correctly is important. In many instances the vehicle cant be driven until the necessary repairs have been completed. Yet many people are wary about this type of service because you dont really know the quality of the work that you are getting. If you need to get your vehicle repaired it is important to do some checking before you take your vehicle to anyone.
If the vehicle is drivable you should attempt to get at least three written estimates. Body shops and repair shops will do this for you free of charge. They will give you an itemized list of the necessary repairs and the cost of them. Make sure you ask about the length of time it will take for them to complete the work as well. Once you get home carefully review all of the estimates. You should see the same items on there in the category of materials and likely some price differences for the labor.
If you notice that one of the estimates for vehicle repairs is much more than the others you may want to ask them why. It could be that they offer better quality products and your car will look nicer or run better when they are done then if you let one of the other businesses do the work. However, it is also possible that they are attempting to scam you and the estimate contains pricing for work that really doesnt have to be done.
Find out how long a particular shop has been in business. Longevity generally means they have a good reputation for doing quality work. Ask about the experience of their employees so you can get a good idea of what their level of expertise is. You can check online with the Better Business Bureau as well to find out if the repair service has any complaints filed against them.
Most quality vehicle repair service centers will stand behind the quality of their work. You want to choose a shop that has a policy in place that they will guarantee the work for a specific amount of time. This way if you arent happy with it or the repairs dont hold up you wont have to pay for them again. Even if the cost of the initial repairs were covered by an insurance company you dont want to have to deal with poor quality work on your vehicle.
Ask your friends, family, and co-workers for recommendations as well. Chances are some of them have had to use a vehicle repair or collision service at some point. They can tell you who they went to and the quality of the work. Ask them if they would go back to that business in the future for such needs as well.
You really cant avoid having to go to a vehicle repair or collision shop if the need arises. However, you can do your part to ensure you are getting quality service at an affordable price. Most of us rely on your vehicles too much to simply trust the work to just anyone.