DIY Auto Repair vs Professional Repair

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 26,109
    Auto Repair Expert John Neilsen discusses DIY Auto Repair vs Professional Repair.

    John Nielsen: Hi! I am John Nielsen with AAA and today, we are talking about Making Sense of Car Care. In this segment, we are going to specifically talk about what you can do yourself and what's best to take to a repair shop for service.

    There are many services that you can do yourself. We will talk about a few, but let me preface that by saying if any of this makes you uncomfortable, you are uncertain, maybe you are a little bit scared, just don't do it. Take it to a shop. We are not here to make a mechanic out of you.

    But everybody can take a look at their tires and tell, are they in good shape. Do they look right? Almost everybody can check the tire pressure on at least a monthly basis to make sure that they are properly inflated. In fact, making sure that the car is cut off and maybe not too hot, we can take a look at the battery and the battery cables. Is anything loose? Is there corrosion? Is there just anything that doesn't look right there?

    And in fact, it's great to just get used to opening the hood of your car, checking your oil, and taking a look around, so that when you see something unusual, you may not know what's actually failed, but you know that something is out of the norm, and it's time to take it to a shop and get it serviced.

    Now, there are some services that is best to take to a repair shop. Many, may take their oil changes there and AAA strongly recommends that when it comes to maintaining your car, you find one shop and take all of your maintenance there. The reason for that is that establishing that relationship over time builds a comfort level. It builds communication, and it really is the key-point to getting quality service.

    Remember, people do business with people and establishing that relationship is so important long-term, that when your car breaks, you go in and your are comfortable that they are going to take good care of you. Now a couple of things that you should do to make sure that you get quality repair are going to be, number one, be totally honest.

    When you take your car, and often, we hesitate to say what's really going on and what we've found wrong, or what we feel, because telling them so many things will increase the cost of the repair but let me assure that nothing could be further from the truth. Giving the shop as much information as possible about what's going on, allows them to accurately and quickly diagnose your vehicle.

    It would be the same as going to a doctor and not telling them about certain pains or conditions because you are afraid they would charge too much. Nobody would do that, and I'd encourage you not to short-change yourself when working with the shop. Tell them what's going on. Tell them as much as you can. Reproduce the sounds, all that's so important. It's expected that the shop will take that and use it to quickly diagnose your vehicle.

    So, when we talk about doing some repairs yourself, there is a couple of things you should remember, and that's that the parts that you use are really important to a long-lasting and quality repair. Professional technicians usually use very high quality parts because they don't get paid to do a job twice, and AAA would strongly that when you are working on your car, you seek out those same high quality parts to make sure that your repair works the first time, and that it lasts a long time.

    Remember, you get what you pay for when it comes to auto-parts, and cheap isn't always best. So, I hope this series has helped you Make Sense of Car Care, protect your vehicle, protect your investment, and keep your car running safely for a long time. Thank you very much!