Cupertino Auto Repair

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Are you price shopping or wasting your time?

Written by maryp posted on Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

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The maze of multiple mechanics….or the haze of multiple mechanics. Which is good? That one is bad….

What happens when you travel around town looking for one shop to cancel out what the other one said or showed you on your BMW or MINI?

Here is some reality; an experienced tech specialist sees leakage on a part. There are signs of liquid residue on the part. He or she tells you about it, but you don’t believe that it means anything. (why- is another topic for another time). Then…

You take it to another shop and another mechanic thinks,”It’s not broken, so don’t worry about it”.

Here is the rub – the second mechanic has never even seen one with the residue or seepage because he only sees the part once it is blown apart and the car is towed in!

So it looks like the specialist who tried to advise you accurately (and help you avoid a breakdown) now looks like the bad guy! Hey. Better yet, go on-line and tell the world …..(not!).

An experienced mechanic/service adviser who can make you aware of what is coming up can help you manage your repairs just like you budget for your home repairs. Your BMW may be your second or third most expensive investment, besides your home, right?

Price shopping is another attempt at comparison that can easily be misconstrued. Let’s say a shop quotes a very low price and he is lookin’ great because the price is much lower than the other guy. But, the cheap shop only gives a 3 month warranty on the part and zero on the labor. If the part fails within 3 months you still have to pay for the labor install.

But, the shop that offers a substantially longer warranty that includes labor, looks like a bad guy only because he quoted a higher price! But, he is giving you a lot more. A part along with labor that is guaranteed to last for 25K miles and 25 months shows that a shop is willing to stand behind their practices. It does give you peace of mind that if something goes wrong, it will be taken care of.

The point is; in either situation one is not bad and the other good! It depends on what is the most important to you. Only you can answer that question. A good service person can help you, but only YOU know what you value.

Here is another idea. Find someone who has the experience and knowledge IF that is what you value. If not, then just find the cheapest shop and stick with them. Otherwise, you and the shops both end up wasting a lot of time and effort…

That usually does not help anyone.

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