When you are looking for an affordable car mechanic it is important to understand the difference between price and cost. Usually consumers will get several prices from four or five repair facilities before they decide where to bring their vehicle. When all other things are considered equal, the winner is usually the one with the most reasonable price. This is where even the most honest auto tech can get themselves into a pickle with the customers.
A price that is given to the customer over the phone is a “sight unseen” estimate. They don’t know until the vehicle arrives what kind of previous maintenance the vehicle has had or if the problem given over the phone is even the right problem. Sometimes it might be the right problem, but they might have a better solution once they see it with their own eyes.
An affordable automotive technician is not always the cheapest. They are looking at each situation individually for what is the most economical and cost effective approach. For example: I call two auto mechanic shops near me to get a price to fix my leaking radiator. I get one price for $250 and another for $375. So after I drop my ride off at the place that gave me the cheaper price, I get a call from them an hour later saying that the radiator hoses are bad, I should flush out the engine block and replace the old engine coolant. So the actual COST is $400. When I ask them about the PRICE they gave me for $250 the service advisor tells me that was just for the radiator.
And to top it off, I find out that the place that gave me the price of $375 included a lifetime warranty on the radiator, new radiator hoses and the engine flush with new coolant. Because the hoses had to come off to replace the radiator anyway, they were actually saving me money in the long haul by putting new ones on with the new radiator. They gave me the COST of $375 for the most economical and cost effective solution right up front. So much for trying to match PRICES!
At 3A Automotive we offer free basic inspections and free estimates. We have found that the best way to avoid upsets is to get a full picture of the problem and only then move forward with a solution that is best for the customer. We recommend that you find a repair facility that uses a similar approach if you want to avoid upsets and save money in the long run.