how to independently maintain your carhow to independently maintain your car

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how to independently maintain your car

One of the most difficult adjustments I had to make after my divorce was learning how to maintain and repair my own vehicle. That was one thing that my husband had always taken care of for me. Since the divorce, I have learned quite a bit about maintaining a car myself. I have picked up a few tidbits of information that has helped me avoid being overcharged for simple things that I can quickly do myself - like jump-starting my dead battery and changing a flat tire. If you need to learn how to independently maintain your vehicle for the first time, take a moment and visit my site.

3 Easily Overlooked Questions To Ask Your Body Shop

Choosing a body shop after an accident can sometimes be confusing. Your insurance company may often try to direct you to their partners or their own in-house repair facility. While you never need to follow your insurance company's recommendations, choosing a body shop on your own requires a little more care.

Unfortunately, the typical advice to ask for estimates may be outdated since many body shops will work directly with the insurance company and revise their estimates as they go. Instead, consider asking these three easy-to-overlook questions if you're trying to make an informed decision about the best shop to repair your car.

1. When Can You Start Work?

There are never any guarantees when starting work on a car after an accident. Many shops can provide a rough estimate of how long it will take them to fix the damage, but they may uncover more problems as they remove body panels or make mechanical repairs. These issues are why it's essential for body shops and insurance companies to stay in touch during the process.

While a body shop may not be able to provide a definitive timetable, they can usually tell you when they can start working. It's not uncommon for collision shops to have work backlogs, and others may expect parts delays or other issues. Asking this question can help you understand how long you may need to be without your car more accurately than asking how long it will take to fix it.

2. Do You Have Any Manufacturer Certifications?

Most reputable body shops will have industry certifications for mechanical work and cosmetic repairs. These certifications cover a wide range of skills and provide assurance that the shop uses qualified technicians who are up-to-date with the latest tools and techniques. However, if you're repairing a higher-end car, you may also want to ask about manufacturer certifications.

Many manufacturers offer specific certifications for their vehicles. These credentials cover unique issues or challenges associated with repairing these cars, so they're a "nice to have" feature for any auto shop. If your manufacturer doesn't offer certifications, don't be afraid to ask if the shop has experience working on your particular make and model.

3. Do You Have Any Parts Preferences?

Auto body shops typically use the parts your insurance company will cover, including anything from genuine dealership parts to used or aftermarket parts. However, most shops will still have some preferences. You can ask whether a shop prefers to use genuine parts or if they have aftermarket brands or used parts suppliers that they trust.

Asking about parts preferences can provide a bit more insight into the shop's auto body repair process and allow you to discuss your preferences with the shop. For example, most collision shops will be happy to accommodate you if you'd prefer to use only genuine or used parts, although you may have to spend some money out of pocket above your insurance settlement.