Your Auto Mechanic Wants You to Know - Really!

There are many articles that talk about what your mechanic doesn't want you to know. This write up is about what your mechanic DOES want you to know. Over the years there have been investigative reports catching bad mechanics in the act of outright dishonest practices and sometimes blatantly stealing. Just as in life there are more good people than bad, there are also more good, hardworking mechanics than dishonest ones. Many of the technicians I know make more money than college graduates, although they seem to garner less respect. This is because of perception, culture has trained our minds to think more of a person if they are well dressed. I've experienced this myself, people look at me differently when I'm in work clothes compared to when I'm in a suit. With this being said, your mechanic wants you to know the following.  

If he gets the job done fast, it doesn't mean that the repair fee wasn't earned. On the flip side, if the car takes longer to repair, a flat rate technician doesn't charge more. Experience necessary to become an auto technician is gained by on the job training, becoming an apprentice, or from attending a tech school. Technical schools can provide a good foundation, but In the end there is no substitute for learning on the job. A good mechanic absorbs knowledge from his years of experience working on cars and from the automotive technicians he has worked with over the years. When it comes to car repair, knowledge is money and just because your mechanic can repair your car quickly in many cases, it doesn't mean his fee was not earned or that you were overcharged. There truly is no substitute for experience.

Automotive technicians have huge investments in their tools, just a quality tool box adequate to store his equipment typically runs several thousand dollars. If you don't believe it just ask your mechanic the next time you visit his shop. Also as time goes on, there are more tools needed to work on the newer vehicles with their evolving systems. Software updates for scan tools are updated every year or two to keep them current. Specialty tools are developed that may sometimes only be used for one specific job. In many cases, your mechanic will have ten times the investment in his tools compared to the value of the car he drives.

Diagnosing cars with intermittent problems is like chasing a ghost. If your car isn't acting up, a correct diagnosis is difficult. The experience of your mechanic  may enable him to make an educated guess, but keep in mind the more information you can provide the better. The last thing he wants is to have you back with the same complaint. Be very descriptive, if the car makes a particular noise it's important to know when it occurs, what sound it makes and the duration. Ask him if he would like to go for a ride; if you can duplicate the problem on a test drive, the chances are much better of a correct diagnosis in a timely manner. 

He also wants you to know that your loyalty does count for something.