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The best places to go for a car problem diagnosis

Uh-oh, somethings gone wrong but you’re not sure what. You know the drill; it’s time to book your car into…where? There are several places you can take a faulty car, but which one is right for you and your motor? Here’s the low-down.

1. Dealerships

If you bought your car from a dealership, they may be your best first port of call. The mechanics here will be trained to deal with your brand and their specific knowledge will likely be unrivalled. They will be able to spot problems with ease, as they are likely to come across the same issues time and time again.

Additionally, if any new parts are required, your dealership is more likely to have them to hand. At a general mechanics they may have to order them in, which can slow down the repair process.

Dealerships are often considered the best option for providing high-quality work. Of course, this will come at a cost unless you have a new vehicle which is still under warranty, in which case you may receive the repairs free of charge.

2. General mechanics

This covers independently owned mechanics which may be part of a national chain, franchise or completely independent. If you didn’t buy your car from a dealership, or are after slightly cheaper rates, then this is usually the best place to go for general repairs or enquiries.

This is thanks to a 2003 EU ruling which allows car owners to choose where they get their car services. Motorists are no longer obliged to use the main dealer, provided the garage they pick uses appropriate ‘Matching Quality’ parts in any repairs they carry out.

They best way to find a reputable garage or mechanic is to ask around local friends and families for a recommendation.

3. Speciality garage

This type of mechanic will focus on either a specific type of repair or vehicle. For example, a garage that focuses only on brake services, or just Japanese cars. There are fewer types of these garages about, but if getting tailored advice is important to you, it could be worth seeking one out.

They often have in-depth knowledge of whichever types of repairs or vehicles they see. So if you have a luxury car, it would be worth your while finding a speciality garage. Equally, if you have a common repair such as a tyre puncture, the streamlined approach of such garages could mean a quicker, cheaper service.

4. Body repair garage

If it’s appearance of your car which is causing you grief, you might want to contact your local body repair garage. They are trained to make your car look as good as new, or at least, a bit tidier! Paintwork, scratches, scuffs and dents can all be smoothed out and improved. Any significant damage caused by an accident can also be addressed here.

5. Online repair shop

Online repair shops provide both doorstep repairs and delivery of new and used parts, often of late model or classic cars. These parts are otherwise hard to come by. These sorts of shops are widely used in the US and are becoming more popular in the UK too.


Car Care Tips  01/06/2015 09:52:14

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