15 Basic Information On Car Repairs 2020

By | May 20, 2020

The best way to avoid car repair scams is to be prepared. A good starting point is to know how your vehicle works and how to identify the most common car problems. It is also important to know how to select a good technician or mechanic, the types of questions to ask, and to know your consumer rights. Knowing this type of information about your car can help you avoid technical errors.

Repair information

How to choose a repair shop
What should I consider to choose a repair shop?

    • Ask friends, family and other trusted people for recommendations. To avoid a hasty decision, find a repair shop before the need arises.
  • Find out over the phone and compare options for the most convenient deal, and also compare the policies applicable to warranty repairs.
  • If state or local laws establish any registration or licensing requirements for repair shops, ask for them and see if they are current. You can also contact the state attorney general’s office or your local consumer protection agency to find out if they file complaints about a particular repair shop.
  • Make sure the repair shop meets the requirements of your vehicle’s warranty.

How to choose a technician

Is there a better technician than another?

15 Basic Information On Car Repairs 2020

15 Basic Information On Car Repairs 2020

Look for workshops that display multiple certifications – for example, an Automotive Service Excellence seal of excellence. Certification indicates that some or all of the repair shop technicians meet basic standards of knowledge and proficiency in specific technical areas. Make sure the certifications are current, but remember that certification alone is not a guarantee of honest and well-done work.

Ask if the technician or workshop has experience repairing vehicles of the same make or model as your car.

Repair Charges: How to Solve the Mystery

Before authorizing repair work, ask the shop how they calculate prices. Some shops charge a flat fee for car repair labor. This published rate is based on an estimate – independent or from the manufacturer – of the time it takes to make repairs. Other shops charge fees based on the actual time the technician spent making the repair.

If your vehicle needs complicated or expensive repairs, or if you have questions about the job they recommend you do, consider seeking a second opinion.

Find out if they will charge you a diagnostic fee if you decide to do the repair work at another shop. Many repair shops charge a fee for the time it takes to make the diagnosis.

Workshops that only do diagnostic work and do not sell parts or make repairs can give you an objective opinion on the necessary repairs.

If you decide to do the repair work, ask for a written estimate.

What things should a written budget include?

  • The budget should identify the problem or defect to be repaired, the necessary parts and the expected charge for labor. Ask to receive a signed copy of the estimate.
  • You should also mention that the shop will contact you for approval before beginning any work that exceeds the specified amount of money or time period. State law may establish this requirement.

What should I know about the parts to repair or replace?

The parts are classified as follows:

  • New – These parts are generally manufactured to the original manufacturer’s specifications, either by the vehicle manufacturer or by an independent company. Your state law may require that repair shops tell you if they will not use original parts to repair your car. The prices and quality of these parts are variable.
  • Remanufactured, Rebuilt and Refurbished – Generally these terms mean the same thing: they are parts that have been restored and are in good working order. Many manufacturers offer a warranty that covers replacement parts, but does not cover the cost of labor to install them.
  • Used or Second Hand – These are used parts from other vehicles that have not been tampered with. In some cases, used or second-hand parts may be the only recourse to replace a failed part, but their reliability is rarely guaranteed.

What do I have to do when the job is done?

Ask to receive a complete repair order describing the work performed. In the order it

Preventive Maintenance

What are the consequences of postponing maintenance?

There are several parts of your vehicle that are interrelated. Skipping maintenance can lead to problems: some specific parts could fail – or an entire system. Neglecting the simplest maintenance routine, such as changing the oil or checking the coolant, can lead to poor fuel economy, unreliable handling, or costly repair failures. It can also invalidate your warranty.

What guidelines should you follow to avoid costly repairs?

Follow the manufacturer’s proposed maintenance schedule based on your vehicle’s use and detailed in your car’s manual. Some repair shops have their own maintenance programs that demand more service visits than manufacturers recommend. Compare the workshop maintenance schedules with that in your manual. Ask for explanations in the workshop – and make sure you understand them – to clarify why they recommend doing more services than recommended by the car manufacturer.

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How to protect your investment in the repair of your car

What are the warranties and service contracts that apply to auto repairs?


There are no “standard warranties” for repairs. Make sure you understand what is covered by your warranty and ask that it be put in writing.

Be aware that warranties may be subject to limitations, including factors such as time, mileage or mileage, deductibles, merchants authorized to perform work under warranty, or special procedures required to collect refunds.

To find out what your warranty rights are, read Warranties or ask your local consumer protection agency.

Service contracts

Many vehicle dealers and other dealers sell optional contracts – service contracts – operated by vehicle manufacturers or independent companies. Not all service contracts are the same; prices vary and are usually negotiable. To decide whether or not you should buy a service contract, consider the following:

Service contracts
Many vehicle dealers and other dealers sell optional contracts – service contracts – operated by vehicle manufacturers or independent companies. Not all service contracts are the same; prices vary and are usually negotiable. To decide whether or not you should buy a service contract, consider the following:

  • Its cost.
  • Covered repairs.
  • If the coverage of the contract overlaps with the coverage offered by another guarantee.
    The deductible.
  • Where the repairs will be made.
  • The procedures required to file a claim, for example, prior authorization for specific repairs or compliance with vehicle maintenance programs.
    If the company pays the repair costs directly to the workshop or if you must pay first and then process a refund.
  • The reputation of the company offering the service contract. Find out at the state attorney general’s office or your local consumer protection agency.

How can I solve a problem related to billing, the quality of repairs, or guarantees?

Document all transactions as well as all of your experiences by noting the dates, times, expenses, and names of the people you dealt with.

Talk to the repair shop manager, manager, or owner first. If you can’t solve your problem, contact your state Attorney General’s office or your local consumer protection agency for help. These offices may have information on alternative dispute resolution programs available in your community. Another option is to file a lawsuit in a lesser court. For these types of lawsuits, it is not necessary to hire an attorney.

How to prevent problems

The more you know about your vehicle, the more likely you are to prevent repair problems. You can detect many of the most common problems using your senses: observing the area around your vehicle, listening to strange noises, feeling a change when driving your vehicle, or even noticing unusual odors.

Looks like a problem

The appearance of small spots or an occasional dripping of fluids under your vehicle may not mean much. But more widespread fluid or fluid stains deserve attention; Check the composition of the drip immediately.

You can identify fluids by their color and consistency.

  • Yellowish green, light blue, or phosphorescent orange spots indicate engine overheating or antifreeze fluid leaking from a faulty hose, water pump, or radiator leak.
  • A dark brown or black oily fluid stain means the engine is leaking oil. The loss may be due to a defect in a gasket or sealant.
  • A red, oily stain indicates a transmission fluid leak from power steering or power steering.
  • A clear puddle of water generally does not indicate a problem. It may be due to normal condensation from your vehicle’s air conditioning.

It smells like a problem

  • You can discover some problems with your nose by detecting them by their smell:
  • The smell of burnt toast – a mild but pungent odor – often indicates an electrical short and a burnt insulating material. For added safety, try not to drive the vehicle until you are diagnosed with the problem.
  • The rotten egg smell – a lingering smell of burned sulfide – generally indicates a problem with the catalytic converter or transformer or other emission control devices. Don’t delay in diagnosing and repairing.
  • A dense acidic odor usually means burned oil. Look for signs of oil loss.
    The smell of gasoline after a failed start may mean that the engine is “choked” with fuel. Wait one minute before trying to boot again. If the odor persists, there may be a leak in the fuel system – a potentially dangerous problem that needs immediate attention.
  • A burning resin odor or an acidic chemical odor may be indicating overheating of the brakes or clutch. Check the parking brake. Stop. Wait for the brakes to cool before repeating hard braking on mountainous roads. If a little smoke comes out of the wheels it means the brake is stuck. In that case, the vehicle must be towed to repair it.
  • A sweet odor indicates a loss of coolant. If the temperature marker or warning light does not indicate overheating, drive carefully to the nearest service station by checking your temperature markers. If another metallic odor is added to this odor and there is some smoke or steam under the hood

Sounds like a problem

Squeaks, screeches, rattles, roars, and other kinds of sound provide good clues to identify problems and maintenance needs. These are the most common noises and their meanings.

Screech – A high pitched sound or hum, usually related to engine speed, may indicate:

  • Loose or worn steering, ventilation or air conditioning belt.

Clicking – A slight high-pitched noise related to engine or vehicle speed may indicate:

  • Loose wheel cup or rim.
  • Fan blade loose or bent inward.
  • Blocked start valve or low oil level in the engine.

Screech – A sharp, pounding metallic sound that generally occurs when the vehicle is in motion:

  • It may be caused by brake wear indicators that let you know it’s time to do a maintenance service.
    Roar – A low rhythmic sound may indicate:

Defective exhaust pipe, transformer or damper.

  • Wear on the cardan joint or other component of the transmission or steering line.
  • Metallic sound – A sharp metallic tapping sound related to engine speed:It is generally caused by using a gasoline with a lower octane rating than recommended. Consult your car manual for the correct octane rating. If the problem persists, the engine ignition timing may be failing.

Strong hammering – A rhythmic hammering sound may be due to:

  • Worn crankshaft or displacement of tie rod or connecting rod.
    Transmission torque converter loose or detached.
  • Knock-off – An occasional knock or hammer may indicate:

Loose shock absorber or other loose suspension component.

  • Muffler or exhaust pipe loose.

It feels like a problem

You may notice some symptoms while driving your car, you may notice uneven ride, vibration and poor performance. These symptoms almost always indicate a problem.


  • Misaligned front wheels and / or wear of the steering components, for example the transmission gear or wheel or the joint articulation can cause steering deviation or a difficulty in keeping the vehicle in a straight line.
  • Deflection – the vehicle’s tendency to drift to the right or to the left – can be caused by something as routine as flat tires or wheels, or something as serious as a front axle failure or misalignment.

Running and driving

  • Wear of shock absorbers or other suspension components – or improper inflation of rims or tires – can lead to poor turning capacity.
  • While there is no fixed formula for shock absorber replacement, try the following: Bounce the vehicle up and down hard on each wheel, then let it bounce alone. Check how many times the vehicle bounces. If the shock absorbers are worn the vehicle will bounce only once or twice.
  • Generally, the elastics or springs of a vehicle do not wear out and there is no need to replace them unless one of the angles of the vehicle is lower than the rest. Overloading your vehicle can damage the suspension.
  • Correctly balance the rims or tires. An improperly balanced or unbalanced tire causes vehicle vibration and can prematurely wear the steering and suspension components.



Brake problems have several symptoms. Schedule a diagnosis and repair if:

  • When the brake is applied, the vehicle veers to one side.
  • The brake pedal locks up against the floor when you keep pressure on the pedal.
  • You hear or feel a rubbing or grinding noise during braking.
  • The “brake” indicator light on the instrument panel illuminates.


The following symptoms indicate an engine problem. Diagnose your vehicle and schedule the repair,

Engine starting or ignition problems.

  • The “check engine” indicator light on the instrument panel illuminates.
  • It jams abruptly or turns off.
  • Poor or insufficient acceleration.
  • Low fuel efficiency.
  • Excessive oil consumption (more than a quart of oil between two changes).
  • The engine continues to run after removing the ignition key.


If your car’s transmission malfunctions it may be due to a component failure or simply due to a disconnected hose or a clogged filter. Make sure the technician checks the simplest first; Transmission repairs are generally expensive. Some of the most common symptoms of transmission problems are:

  • Abrupt or hard gears between gear changes or speeds.
  • Delay or lack of response when changing from “neutral” to “direct” or “reverse”.
  • Shift failure during normal acceleration.

How to correct problems.

  • When your car has a problem it doesn’t always mean that you will have to do a major repair. Let’s look at some of the most common causes of problems and techniques to help you and your technician detect and repair them:
  • Alternator – If your alternator cables are loose or detached it may appear that your car’s alternator is broken. Before replacing the alternator the technician should check the loose connections and perform a test.
  • Battery – If your battery terminals or terminals are corroded or loose, your car battery may appear to be dead or faulty. Before replacing the battery, the technician should clean the terminals and perform a test run.
  • Starting – What appears to be a faulty start or ignition may actually be due to a dead or poorly connected battery. Before repairing the starter, ask the technician to check all connections and test the battery.
    Muffler – A loud roaring noise under your vehicle indicates that a new muffler or exhaust pipe needs to be installed.
  • Tuning – The old, familiar “tuning” is probably not relevant to your vehicle. Newer vehicles have few parts that need replacement, except for belts, spark plugs, hoses, and filters. Follow the recommendations outlined in your car’s manual.


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