Protect Your Wallet At The Repair Shop (I).
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|#Protect Your Wallet at the Repair Shop
(ARA) - Unless you're a mechanic, taking your car into the repair shop can be a scary and mysterious experience. Your car goes behind the doors and minutes later, you're presented with a list of problems, and possibly a large bill. Even if you aren't a car expert, there are things you can look out for to make sure your car repair is honest and necessary.
Brakes are a common area where repair estimates can be inflated. Calipers are the devices that push the brake pads against the disc. They can last up to 100,000 miles; so if the mechanic says they need replacing, ask if you can see how they aren't working properly or where the brake pads are wearing.
An oil change is a fairly simple task, but it can sometimes end up costing you more than you intended. This is because there can be hidden fees, such as disposal fees, extra services included, or extra parts, such as new air filters or wiper blades, added on. Make sure you know what's included in the price of your oil change. Mechanics typically recommend an oil change every 3,000 miles, but many car manufacturers recommend only twice a year or every 7,000 miles. Somewhere in the middle may work for you.
Surprisingly, if your battery is weak or dead, it may not be the battery. Instead of automatically purchasing a new battery, it may be cheaper in the long run to have a reputable mechanic run an alternator and voltage regulator test. This will tell if your car's electrical charge system is working. If there's a problem, it may cost a few hundred dollars to fix, but it will save you hundreds in constantly buying new batteries while the problem goes unchecked.
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