Things to Look for When Choosing an Auto Body Repair Shop
Need to choose an auto body repair shop?
It’s never fun when it’s something you’re forced to do, though it’s not always right after you have a car accident. Remember that you should also take your car in for a regular service just to ensure that everything is in working condition, this keeps your car in good condition and keeps you and the drivers around you safe on the road.
Most people just type “auto repair” into their search engine and choose the place that’s closest to them, or one of the top three options in their search engine. Unfortunately, this is a common trick that many repair shops use just to get business, so it doesn’t mean that you’re using a good auto repair shop at all. Just one search isn’t enough to tell you which company to choose; responsible car owners should research a little deeper than this.
A bad auto repair shop can put you at risk, get in the way of your insurance, or even cost you thousands of dollars in the long run—sometimes it can even cost you the use of your vehicle.
Here’s what you should look for when it’s your time to choose an auto body repair shop.
Reputation and Reviews
You should type the auto repair shop that you want to choose into your search engine, even if it’s just to make sure that they really exist. You should also check out some of the reviews online to find out what the experiences of other customers have been with that auto repair shop: Were they happy, and were their cars returned to them in excellent condition? Or are there a bunch of bad reviews?
A company’s reputation often precedes it, and you should take note. Remember that you’re looking for honest reviews; there are many companies that will simply pay their employees to write their reviews for them, and this can be a nasty surprise for customers who didn’t do proper research.
When you’re looking for an auto repair shop, location often matters. You’ll want to choose one in your area, or you’ll have to take the risk of towing your car all the way to the repair shop’s location. It’s simply really impractical if the shop happens to be halfway across the state.
Having said this, don’t limit yourself to one too close to you just because of distance, either; sometimes it’s better to pay the extra costs of transporting the vehicle to the better auto shop a few miles down the road.
Your auto repair shop should be registered as such, and sometimes your insurer will be happy to recommend a list of approved auto repair shops in your area—just ask. Also ask the repair shop if they are willing to provide their registration details; if they’re unwilling to provide this information to you or your insurance company in the event of an accident, then you should find another auto repair shop.
Don’t be afraid to ask your auto repair shop any questions; when we say that, we really mean any questions. If your auto repair shop doesn’t want to answer these questions or makes you feel like a fool for asking, then you should almost certainly find another company immediately, and find one who is completely transparent when it comes to answering your questions.
Excellent companies provide excellent customer service, and if the company doesn’t match your standards, then you should know that there’s something up. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire—and you don’t want that smoke coming from underneath the hood.
You should always examine the conduct of the people whom you are dealing with, especially when it comes to an auto repair shop. This includes asking previous customers how they felt dealing with the company, and it includes asking the right questions about what repairs will be done. Remember that you have the right to ask pretty much any questions that you want to when someone is working on your car: It’s your money and your car, after all, so you have the right to ask whether or not it’s being done properly.
If you have to take your car back to the repair shop a few days or weeks after the repairs have been done, then you also have good reason to locate another auto repair shop.