What is it going to cost to repair my car?
That has always been the million dollar question. But it is not as easily explained as one might think. Some consumers are just concerned about price and not service and quality. I do understand, after all I am a consumer myself and am always concerned about price. If I am buying a TV and looking at the same make and model, price would be the determining factor. The service industry is a little more complicated than that and there are some important questions we should ask prior to asking price. Here are some examples;
- How long has the shop been in business, in the same location, with the same owner(s)
- Are the Technicians ASE Certified
- What is the parts and labor warranty
- Is the shop a member of ASCCA, or any trade organization
- Is the shop a AAA approved shop
- Does the shop have customer testimonials
When making a decision on your repair needs these are all important to know. As an example, did you know that the person cutting your hair needs to be licensed by the state, but the person doing brakes on your car doesn’t. Pretty scary when you think about it. Quite often I get potential customers telling me that they were quoted as much as 40% less for the “same job” that I quoted them. Bottom line, it’s impossible to have that much difference without something being different such as parts quality or Technician quality. I read this quote in a popular magazine that I think sums it up
“it’s unwise to pay too much, but it is worse to pay to little. When you pay too much you lose a little money. When you pay too little you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing
it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying too little and getting a lot. It can’t be done. If you use a lower bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that, you will have enough to pay for something better.”
My goal is not to offend by this letter but to inform. One of the problems with this industry ( my industry) is that there are people in this industry out to make a quick buck and do not take into consideration the customer’s needs. Doing a job with inferior parts and unqualified technicians does not save money and actually will cost more money in the long run. Be aware of what you are getting for your money by asking the right questions. If the shop doesn’t want to take the time to explain things or is 30 to 40% less then the next closest quote then maybe it’s time to move on, no matter what the price.
Look for other auto repair articles to come.
[schema type=”person” name=”Tom Bender” orgname=”Bender’s Automotive” jobtitle=”Owner” url=”www.bendersauto.com” description=”Tom Bender is the owner of Bender’s Automotive, a Top AAA Approved Auto Repair Shop in Covina CA. He also teaches automotive service at Citrus College” street=”747 E. San Bernardino Road” city=”Covina” state=”CA” postalcode=”91723″ country=”US” email=”firstname.lastname@example.org” phone=”(626) 332-3022″ ]