We’ve all been there.
Something goes wrong with your car. You bring it into your dealership who tells you it will cost thousands of dollars to fix. You don’t have thousands of dollars to spend and, even if you do, you don’t want to spend it unless you have to… But you feel stuck.
Before you hand a boatload of cash to a dealership, you should probably get a second opinion. It doesn’t occur to most people to do this but it’s a great idea, especially for expensive repairs. Here’s why:
First and foremost, you want to be sure you’re fixing the right problem. Some mechanics — even at dealerships — are not as skilled as others, and may recommend repairs that aren’t needed; others may intentionally take advantage of your lack of knowledge to upsell you extra services. It takes a trained mechanic, with some advanced diagnostic equipment and high ethical standards, to accurately (and honestly) diagnose problems with your car.
By getting a second opinion, you can be sure you’re getting the problem fixed the first time– so you won’t end up back in the shop next week.
Getting a second opinion will also help you avoid unnecessary repairs. For example, your dealer may tell you that you need an entirely new part when the problem might simply be a bad sensor, which can be fixed for a fraction of the cost. Or they may recommend the most expensive fix for a collision repair… when there’s actually a much more affordable option that provides similar quality. It can also help you spot upselling or suggestive selling, like when a mechanic suggests a premature oil change or an unneeded coolant flush but your second opinion says otherwise.
Getting a second opinion from a trusted, experienced mechanic can help you to avoid expensive or unnecessary repairs like these– which means more money in your pocket at the end of the day.
Good old peace of mind is probably the most underrated benefit of getting a second opinion.
Investing in a costly repair can be daunting, especially If you don’t know a lot about cars or aren’t comfortable with the scope or cost of the proposed repairs. If you have any doubts about the diagnosis or cost of the job, you can always take your car to get a second opinion.
This will usually help you better understand the problem with your car — even if the second opinion validates the first opinion– and makes the whole situation much less stressful.
At V&F, we understand the hassle of getting a repair. That’s why work hard to make sure you have a complete picture of the health of your car, and all the information you need to make a repair decision. If you need a second opinion about your car, call us at (413)314-2280 to discuss your maintenance schedule, or schedule an appointment online.