Taking your car in for a repair can be daunting. Make sure you don't get stung with our top tips to choosing the right garage.
- Shop around -Tell the mechanic you just want a quote. You'll be able to compare prices and also, the garage is less likely to overcharge you if they think they could lose your business to a rival firm.
- Check the garage's registration - There are two main trade bodies, the Motor Vehicle Repairers Association (MVRA) and the Vehicle Builders and Repairers Association (VBRA). Cowboys aren't likely to be members of either.
- Get a recommendation - Ask your family and friends if they know of a good garage. Agree the work up front - Ask the garage to contact you for permission if they want to carry out work you didn't agree to beforehand. It's a good idea to agree a cost too or at least a maximum amount.
- Agree the work up front - Ask the garage to contact you for permission if they want to carry out work you didn't agree to beforehand. It's a good idea to agree a cost too or at least a maximum amount.
- Check if they'll give you a guarantee - Some garages will provide a warranty on their work so you can come back if anything goes wrong.
- Read the small print - Especially when the garage offers perks like a courtesy car. Check if they'll charge extra for these.
- Ask for a detailed invoice - This will make it easier to spot and discuss anything you didn't agree to.
A good garage should have no problem with you asking questions. If they’re hostile towards you, or you're unhappy with the cost, don't be afraid to go somewhere else.
If you find a good garage, stick with it. And spread the word to friends and family.