Tuesday, January 26, 2016

When to DIY or When to See a Mechanic

When you have problems with your car, it’s important to know what’s wrong with it to make sure it’s safe to drive. You also have to keep the car in good shape by servicing it. It can be hard to know when you should take your car to a mechanic or do it yourself.  First and foremost, if you don’t know what you are doing, don’t attempt to try it, you could cause serious damage to your car. Enlist a loved one who knows how to work on cars or go to a mechanic.

Here’s a guide when you are thinking about if you should go to a mechanic-

Oil changes- You can definitely do your own oil change if you know how or you can go to an oil change place to get it done.

Changing a tire- You can change your own tire however make sure you have the correct size to fit your car. Having a jack would make it easier. If you take it to a mechanic, they will also rotate your tires for you.  Stay away from retreaded tires.

Replacing Brakes is something best left to someone who really knows what they are doing.  Problems with your brakes can be very dangerous so make sure you don’t put it off.

Electrical Problems are usually detected by a special computer, so you should pay your mechanic a visit, just to be sure you know what is really going on.

Check engine lights can be either something serious or something needs reset. A car part store should be able to tell you what the problem is.

Changing Windshield Wipers is really easy. You can definitely do this yourself. Just follow the directions on the package. It’s a good idea to replace them when you are having trouble seeing while it’s raining.

Engine troubles are definitely for someone who really knows what they are doing.  Not just someone who thinks they know what to do. The engine is the heart of your car.

Transmission problems again call your mechanic.

Headlights burnt out, you can replace these fairly easily yourself.

Replacing fluids are an easy to do, just make sure you know what goes where.  Don’t forget to top off your wiper fluid too. It’s the most forgotten fluid after all.

Here’s a few more tips:

When you are taking your car in to be serviced or fixed make sure you have a reputable shop working on your vehicle.  Check out online reviews, talk to friends, and be an informed consumer.

If you are working on your own car, order your car parts from a company with a good reputation. You don’t want the wrong parts or used ones.  

Don’t be afraid to get a second opinion or a third one. You need to be sure the right problem is diagnosed.

Ask for an invoice and price of what it will cost upfront.

If you are in an accident, take your car in to be examined and make sure there’s no damage under the hood.

Know your car’s actual value, don’t waste time paying more than your car is worth in repairs. If your insurance is covering the repairs, they will cap you at what the car is worth.  When that happens it’s time to get a new car.

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