Today's cars, light trucks, and sport-utility vehicles are high-tech marvels with digital dashboards, oxygen sensors, electronic computers, unibody construction, and more. They run better, longer, and more efficiently than models of years past.
But when it comes to repairs, some things stay the same. The following tips should help you along the way:
Do your homework before taking your vehicle in for repairs or service.
- Read the owner's manual to learn about the vehicle's systems and components.
- Follow the recommended service schedules.
- Keep a log of all repairs and service.
When you think about it, you know your car better than anyone else. You drive it every day and know how it feels and sounds when everything is right. So don't ignore its warning signals.
Use all of your senses to inspect your car frequently. Check for:
- Unusual sounds, odors, drips, leaks, smoke, warning lights, gauge readings.
- Changes in acceleration, engine performance, gas mileage, fluid levels.
- Worn tires, belts, hoses.
- Problems in handling, braking, steering, vibrations.
- Note when the problem occurs.
- Is it constant or periodic?
- When the vehicle is cold or after the engine has warmed up?
- At all speeds? Only under acceleration? During braking? When shifting?
- When did the problem first start?
Once you are at our location, communicate your findings.
- Be prepared to describe the symptoms.
- Carry a written list of the symptoms that you can give us.
- Resist the temptation to suggest a specific course of repair. Just as you would with your physician, tell us where it hurts and how long it's been that way, but let the technician diagnose and recommend a remedy.
Stay involved. . . Ask questions.
- Ask as many questions as needed to fully understand your repair. Ask for laymen terms if needed.
- Don't rush the technician to make an on-the-spot diagnosis. You may ask to be called and apprised of the problem, course of action, and costs before work begins.
- Before you leave, be sure you understand all shop policies regarding labor rates, guarantees, and acceptable methods of payment.
- Leave a telephone number where you can be called.
Great experience. Scott was upfront about needed repairs and maintenance, and didn't try to do anything without my authorization. Also, there was no high pressure to do anything immediately like some shops will try. There is a nice, clean, comfortable waiting area with free wi-fi, and he also has loaner cars available if you don't want to or are unable wait around. I have to drive 20 miles to get to this shop, but it's worth it for an honest mechanic.
I had a great experience at Hitchcock Automotive. They were able to get me in right before the Holidays when everywhere else was busy or was not able to do the service that my car needed. I would highly recommend them to anybody looking for a good place to have work done on their car. Friendly staff and quick service.
Traveling to Sarasota for vacation and brakes were making unusual noise and felt that it should be checked out. Read reviews prior to selection and called and spoke with owner , Scott , who directed me to come in anytime. Upon arrival I was greeted by a very courteous and welcoming owner that listened to my issues and had a tech on it and out for a test ride and on a lift and checked out quickly. Results were nothing to worry about and normal for some vehicles from north with little rusting that can cause some noise or rubbing that will go away and does not harm brakes and that mine were in excellent condition. When I offered my credit card for payment Scott informed me there was no charge as they had done no work!! I have already offered his name to some friends that spend winters here for their auto servicing needs.