What Happens When My Car is Totaled?

When a car's damages are beyond repair, or the cost to fix the car exceeds the value of the car, it's considered a total loss. In some cases, an Auto Body Shop in Stratford, CT like Breezy Point Auto Body can help you find a solution.

A car accident is always an unfortunate event. It’s especially bad when your car ends up being undrivable. When a car’s damages are beyond repair, or the cost to fix the car exceeds the value of the car, it’s considered a total loss. In some cases, an Auto Body Shop in Stratford, CT like Breezy Point Auto Body can help you find a solution.

Repair or Replace

In most cases, the insurer determines whether a vehicle is considered a total loss. Comprehensive coverage and collision coverage help pay to replace a totaled vehicle. But, if your vehicle is totaled and you don’t have comprehensive or collision coverage, you may have to pay out of pocket to buy a replacement vehicle.

To determine your car’s worth (the “actual cash value” in insurance terms) at the time of the accident, insurers typically use a number of factors to figure your car’s actual cash value, including its age, condition, mileage and resale value, in addition to the selling price of similar vehicles in your area.

In the end, the choice to repair or replace a total loss vehicle will come down to how much value the vehicle has to you. The insurance company will give you the money to purchase a new vehicle and take ownership of your totaled vehicle. But, it’s still up to you whether you want to repair or replace the car.

In most cases, it’s a good idea to take the money and replace the car. You should go through with repairs if your insurance will cover it. You should also consider repairs if you have the means to cover them without it causing you any problems or hardships.

Resurrecting a Total Loss

Before you send your car to the junkyard, consider some options for repair. If sentimental value makes you want to keep the vehicle, a good auto body shop may be able to resurrect your car.

To keep it, the insurance company must first be convinced. Once an agreement is struck, you won’t receive a check for the car’s entire value. From the payout, the insurance company will subtract the deductible, along with deducting the estimated amount it would have received from a salvage yard. It may also deduct some other costs or fees. You can then use whatever is left to make the needed repairs, which are now your responsibility. It’s smart to know what the repairs will cost before launching efforts to keep the car.

Once a car is declared a total loss by your insurance company, its title receives a brand indicating a prior condition, such as “flood,” “salvage” or “reconstructed.” This is a red flag that might prevent you getting the car insured or create difficulty trading it in or reselling it.

Cosmetic Totals

If most of the damage is cosmetic, the car would probably be repairable and just as safe to drive as before the accident. In such a case, keeping it would be an option to consider.

Hidden damage discovered once repairs begin could run up costs well beyond the car’s value. Moreover, other damage, such as a cracked frame, might not be found at all but would still make the car unsafe to drive.

The first step is to contact a reputable auto body shop to get an accurate estimate. Breezy Point Auto Body, a certified Auto Body Shop in Stratford, CT, is a great place to start when trying to decide if you should repair your totaled vehicle. Give them a call for an accurate estimate by dialing (203) 378 4909 or use our convenient Contact form.

Express Yourself – Modern Trends In Auto Painting

Breezy Point Auto Body uses environmentally-friendly waterborne paint and an infrared paint-drying process that allows us to return your vehicle more quickly than traditional auto paint techniques. Our skilled technicians can help you find the perfect color for your vehicle.

In a 1909 meeting, Henry Ford said, “Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black.” In the century-plus since he said that, manufacturers—including Ford—have relaxed that requirement somewhat, offering vehicles painted in a rainbow of colors, up to and including actual rainbows.

When you look around while driving, though, it seems like only a few colors can actually be found on the road. That begs the question: “just what are the most popular colors for cars these days?” To get the answer we turn to the experts, in this case, Pittsburgh Plate Glass, better known as PPG. Although, as its name implies, PPG was first an auto glass company, it now is among the top producers of automotive paints.

According to Jane E. Harrington, PPG Manager, auto manufacturer’s attitudes have loosened a bit since Ford’s day. They have been forced to adjust their offerings to include the modern client’s demands. “Color and styling choices by original equipment manufacturers must be responsive to differences among potential buyers. They need to consider everyone from technology-focused millennials to family-focused baby boomers, monitoring sales data and style trends to try to predict two or three years in advance of a model year what colors and effects they will offer.”

Surprisingly, with all the choices available (PPG introduced 64 new shades to the industry for the 2018-19 model years), people still prefer tried-and-true, classic monochrome colors. According to the PPG website, the most popular color for automobiles across the planet in 2015 was (drum roll, please) …white, at 35 percent. Black came in a distant second (sorry Henry), with 17 percent, followed by silver, grey, natural, red, blue, green and “other.” Looking solely at North America, the order wasn’t much different, with white at 23 percent and black at 19 percent followed by grey, silver, red and blue.

For those with more adventurous tastes, new color options allow you to transform your car into a work of art. These new colors come with some interesting names, by the way, including “Hyper HD,” “IM Perfect,” “Knight’s Watch” and “Lucid Dreams.” These unique color options allow you to show off your personality-and your car’s.

If your vehicle needs a paint touch up or a complete paint job, contact our auto body shop in Stratford, CT. Breezy Point Auto Body uses environmentally-friendly waterborne paint and an infrared paint-drying process that allows us to return your vehicle more quickly than traditional auto paint techniques. Our skilled technicians can help you find the perfect color for your vehicle. Call us at (203) 378 4909 or use our convenient Contact Form to schedule your appointment for auto body repair, auto detailing, new tires, and more.

Four Collision Repair Myths

Repairing your car after an accident shouldn’t be confusing, but there are many misconceptions when it comes to the process. Along with finding the right auto body shop in Stratford, CT, you’ll have to know the facts about the repair process. Here are four collision repair myths that may not necessarily be true.

Repairing your car after an accident shouldn’t be confusing, but there are many misconceptions when it comes to the process. Along with finding the right auto body shop in Stratford, CT, you’ll have to know the facts about the repair process. Here are four collision repair myths that may not necessarily be true.

Myth #1 – You Must Use a Shop Your Insurance Company Chooses

Many people think that they have to go to one of the auto body repair shops suggested by the insurance company. But according to Connecticut State law, you have the right to have your vehicle repaired at the licensed repair shop of your choice. This is great news because it means you can choose a well-established collision repair shop like Breezy Point Auto Body. They provide professional auto body repair in Stratford, CT. They are I-Car Certified and have experience repairing all kinds of collision damage. Breezy Point Auto Body will even handle your insurance claim for you throughout the entire process, from calling in the claim to arraigning the final payment.

Myth #2 – Only a Dealer Can Repair Your Car Properly 

While dealerships can provide quality repairs, they can be quite costly if you are no longer under warranty. Independent auto body shops can provide the same quality of repairs and a much lower price. Independent shops also offer more personalized service and better customer care. It can be easier to build a personal relationship with independent garages since you speak directly with the mechanics. Many mechanics at independent collision repair shops have worked at dealerships before, and/or can have specialized training from the vehicle manufacturers. In addition, independent mechanics answer to you; they have no loyalty to the manufacturer, as dealerships must. Look for shops that are certified for your specific type of vehicle. Breezy Point Auto Body is OEM Certified for Honda, Acura, Nissan and Infiniti models, and recognized by Hyundai, Ford and FCA (Chrysler-Fiat).

Myth #3 – A Damaged Frame Can’t Be Repaired

Your car’s frame is its structural support system. When you’ve been in a heavy collision, the frame can get bent out of its original shape. While many people think a car with frame damage is a total loss, today’s technology allows mechanics to accomplish this difficult repair. A quality auto body collision repair shop should have the proper equipment to repair your vehicle’s frame. Breezy Point Auto Body uses computerized straightening to repair vehicle frames. Depending on the original extent of damage to your vehicle, your mechanic should be able to straighten your damaged car frame.

Myth #4 – Insurance Pays for All the Repairs

Collision coverage protects you against damage from an accident. Contrary to popular belief, your insurance company doesn’t always pay for all of your repair costs in a collision, especially if you are at fault, or the other driver didn’t have insurance. In that case, you will still have to pay your deductible. Your “deductible” is the amount of money that you must pay out of pocket when you file an insurance claim. If the other driver is at fault, other driver’s insurance company can repair your car damage and you won’t have to pay a deductible. If you caused the accident and don’t have collision coverage on your car, you’ll end up having to pay out of pocket.

 

Now that you know the truth about the collision repair process, you will be better prepared in the case of an accident. If you need auto body repair in Stratford, CT, Breezy Point Auto Body can provide efficient, quality service. Give us a call today at (203) 378 4909 or use our convenient Contact form.

Is Custom Window Tinting Right for Your Car?

Auto tinting involves fitting a darkened sheet of film to a vehicle’s glass to block visibility. This can include all four side windows and the front and rear windshield. Auto tinting should always be done by a professional, and Breezy Point Auto Body provides the best auto window tinting in Stratford, CT. There are many reasons you may want to tint your car windows including comfort, health concerns, safety and privacy, and preserving the condition of your car. Some people just like the sporty look that tinting gives their vehicle.Auto tinting involves fitting a darkened sheet of film to a vehicle’s glass to block visibility. This can include all four side windows and the front and rear windshield. Auto tinting should always be done by a professional, and Breezy Point Auto Body provides the best auto window tinting in Stratford, CT. There are many reasons you may want to tint your car windows including comfort, health concerns, safety and privacy, and preserving the condition of your car. Some people just like the sporty look that tinting gives their vehicle.

One of the most common reasons people get their car tinted is to reduce the temperature of your car’s interior on hot summer days. Tinting can block heat and UV radiation from the sun to reduce the temperature inside your car. By blocking the sun, tinting your vehicle’s glass can also help protect you and your family from the harmful UV rays that can cause skin cancer.

These harmful UV rays can be damaging to the interior of your car as well. Sun and heat can cause your car’s upholstery to fade, dry out, and crack. Leather upholstery is especially vulnerable to this sun damage. Minimizing damage and protecting the interior of your car can help preserve the resale value of your vehicle.

Tinting can make your car safer to drive because it reduces the glare from sun, snow, and other car headlights, which can impede your vision and hinder your driving. Tinting can also help protect you in an auto accident, as it can help hold shattered glass together, protecting the occupants of the car.

Besides making your car safer to drive, tinting can also help protect the occupants and items in the vehicle. The added privacy is why window tinting is used commonly in limousines. By blocking the view from the outside, no one can see if there are valuable items inside the vehicle, therefore deterring burglars.

Many new cars come with tinted windows as an option, but tinting is available as an after-market option as well. You should always get your tinting done by a professional to ensure quality results. If you’re looking for the best auto window tinting in Stratford, CT, a professional auto body shop like Breezy Point Auto Body can make sure that your tinting is properly fitted. A proper tint job should be perfectly smooth with no bubbles and no peeling.

Each state has their own rules about the allowed darkness for car tinting, especially if you are planning on tinting your front or back windshields. This is because if the tint is too dark, it can be dangerous when driving at night because it may reduce visible light transmission through vehicle windows.

Now that you know the benefits of auto window tinting, you can decide if tinting is right for you. There are many methods and types of auto tints, and a professional can help you choose the right one. For the best auto window tinting in Stratford, CT, contact Breezy Point Auto Body (203) 378-4909 or use our convenient Contact form.

How To Handle Your Collision Repair

You’ve been in a car accident...Now what? The process of having your vehicle repaired after a car accident or road traffic collision can vary greatly depending on the nature of the accident and the insurance companies and policies involved. Here are a few guidelines you can follow to help make the process go more smoothly.

You’ve been in a car accident…Now what? The process of having your vehicle repaired after a car accident or road traffic collision can vary greatly depending on the nature of the accident and the insurance companies and policies involved. Here are a few guidelines you can follow to help make the process go more smoothly.

Determine Fault

The first step is to determine who is at fault. Sometimes determining fault will be easy, such as with a rear-end collision, but other road traffic accidents may be trickier. If the other driver is at fault for the accident, his or her auto insurance is responsible for covering car repair costs. Generally, when you’re at fault for the accident your collision or comprehensive coverage can cover it, or you can opt to pay for car repairs yourself to avoid filing an accident claim with your auto insurance company.

Make a Claim

Now that fault has been determined, it’s time to make the insurance claim. You will have to get your vehicle inspected by a designated insurance inspector from the insurance company or the auto body shop. After that, an inspector will estimate the cost of the repair.

Collision Repair

Once the damages have been inspected, the repair estimates have been made, it’s time to get the vehicle repaired. Your insurance company may require you to go to one of their pre-chosen auto body shops. If not, you’ll need to make a choice on where to get your car repaired.

One important factor to look for is a shop’s certifications. Certifications indicate that the shop and technicians have the most up-to-date training and knowledge to repair your vehicle. Certified auto body shops like Breezy Point Auto Body have the skills and equipment to get your vehicle back to factory standards quickly.

Back To Factory Standards

So now that you know how to handle your collision repair, you’ll be able to make a better-informed decision on how to handle the situation. A certified auto body shop like Breezy Point Auto Body will be able to help you deal with your insurance claim as well as repair your vehicle to original condition. Call the Experts at Breezy Point today at (203) 378 4909 if you need help with your next collision repair.

The Importance of Choosing a Certified Auto Body Shop

So The Importance of Choosing a Certified Auto Body Shop like Breezy Point Auto Body is much more important than you might think. There's a lot to a quality repair. Call the Experts at Breezy Point today at (203) 378 4909 or use our convenient Contact Form and we'll reach out to you quickly.
Even if it’s a simple fender bender, a car accident is always a stressful situation. After you make sure there are no injuries and file the police report, it’s time to sort out the repairs for your vehicle. It’s important to choose a body shop that specializes in collision repair or dent repair. Not all shops have the equipment and skills to properly do auto body work. While it may seem convenient to take it to the closest local body shop, you may want to do some further research to ensure your repair is done properly.

One important factor to look for is a shop’s certifications. Check for logos on the shop’s door or windows, or on the shop’s website that indicates specific certifications. A certified body shop will require their technicians to receive special training that makes them knowledgeable about specifications and components for certain vehicle makes and how to safely repair them. Certifications can also indicate that the technicians have had specialized training in certain repairs or techniques or that the shop has been inspected for quality. Certified shops are held up to industry standards by independent organizations.

Each car manufacturer has systems and components that are specific to the models they build. Having a factory-certified body shop and technician repair your vehicle will ensure that the repair is done properly for your specific model. Collision repair shops like Breezy Point Auto Body are certified in many different vehicle makes. They are certified to service Honda, Nissan, Infinity, Acura, Chrysler, Ford, GM, and Hyundai.

Cars, SUVs, and trucks are becoming more complex, which can make it harder for a non-certified technician to properly service your vehicle. Sometimes, an improper repair can lead to more issues and costs down the road.

Aside from certifications in different vehicle makes, a body shop can be certified by different auto organizations. An organization such as I-Car will train technicians in different specialties for auto body repair. An I-Car certification lets you know that the technicians that will be servicing your vehicle have the most up to date training and qualifications in the industry.

Auto repair businesses can also work to become a certified I-CAR Gold Class business by having at least one I-CAR Platinum Individual-certified employee in each of four certification areas. An I-CAR Gold Class certification assures customers that the body shop has the highest level of expertise in collision repair. Along with their certifications in different makes of vehicles, Breezy Point Auto Body also carries the I-Car Gold certification. This assures you that your vehicle will get the right service for your specific make and model, as well as top quality collision repair.

Choosing an I-Car Gold certified shop with factory certification for your car’s specific make will ensure that your vehicle is repaired to the highest quality and safety standards. Whether you need paint matching and repainting service, frame straightening, or dent repair, choosing a body shop that is certified will give you the peace of mind that your repair will be done to factory standards and with the highest level of professionalism.

So The Importance of Choosing a Certified Auto Body Shop like Breezy Point Auto Body is much more important than you might think. There’s a lot to a quality repair. Call the Experts at Breezy Point today at (203) 378 4909 or use our convenient Contact Form and we’ll reach out to you quickly.

Avoid needing Breezy Point Auto Body Repairs this holiday season

Avoid needing Auto Body Repair this holiday season
1. Prepare your vehicle for the winter
During the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be difficult to find time to check off all the items on your to-do list, but automotive maintenance should be a priority. Winter’s cold, snow, and ice are conditions that everyone should prepare for as early as possible. Start with a check of your tires. Bald tires are a common cause of winter accidents because they are ineffective at gripping the road, and when those roads are covered in ice, braking, turning, accelerating, and backing up all become more difficult. So, visit your automotive specialist to check your tires, brakes, windshield wipers, defrost system, battery, and fluids. Keeping up with automotive service, maintenance, and repair is always the first step to avoid an accident.

2. Monitor the weather
Let the shopping begin; it’s the holiday season. This is the time of year when everyone takes to the road in search of the perfect gifts for their loved ones, but before you do, always check the weather. Aside from bundling up in your holiday best, you want to plan ahead for winter’s road conditions. If the forecast predicts fog, rain, snow, or worse, you want to be prepared to take all the necessary precautions to avoid an accident, or even consider postponing your trip. Pay attention to all travel warnings, and if you feel safe making the journey, remember to leave early, drive more slowly, and leave a little extra room between you and other vehicles.

3. Be rested and alert
The holiday parties are underway, and that can often mean staying out late. Enjoy the festivities this season, but don’t forget to get the rest you need to remain alert while out on winter roads. Driving drowsy can be deadly! In fact, the National Highway Administration reports that drowsy drivers cause over 72,000 accidents nationwide. Don’t add to the statistics this season, rest up after those holiday shindigs so you can be aware of your surroundings while driving through the worst road conditions of the year. Now’s the time to look out for other cars, roaming animals, playing children, and more. So, stay alert!

4. Take parking lot precautions during holiday shopping
Traffic is at an all-time high, especially in mall and shopping center parking lots. Aside from stray shopping carts that could damage your vehicle, it’s also important to be on the look for holiday thefts. Most shoppers tend to visit more than one store in an outing, so the later it gets, the more gifts end up in your vehicle. Consider storing all gifts in the trunk of your car to keep them from being visible, or make a couple extra stops to unload at home, so potential thieves will have less reason to target your vehicle.

Breezy Point Auto Body wants you to avoid the need for auto body repairs throughout the holidays, and we hope these tips help. We know your time is valuable, and it should be spent enjoying the magic of the season. Should you suffer an accident or any kind of auto body damage, remember that Breezy Point Auto Body is a friendly, knowledgeable, and reliable full-service auto collision repair shop that has been serving Fairfield and New Haven Counties since 1960. Call Breezy Point Auto Body at (203)378-4909 or use our contact form any time you may need our services.

Trust us to exceed your expectations. And have a very Safe and Happy Holiday Season.

Breezy Point Auto Body: A Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop

Breezy Point Auto Body is a Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop, meaning they employ top-quality technicians who have extensive knowledge about collision repair and are trained to use the best equipment and tools to make sure the job gets done right. Your Nissan is in good hands when you leave it with Breezy Point Auto Body.

Breezy Point Auto Body-A Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop

There are many advantages to having your vehicle repaired by our Nissan Certified shop and technicians, such as our I-CAR Gold certified collision repair techniques that help maintain future crashworthiness priority use of quality Genuine Nissan Replacement Parts, state-of-the-art tools and equipment specially made for Nissan collision repairs to aid in the preservation of your vehicle’s value, a limited lifetime warranty on complete collision repair, and more. Having your Nissan repaired by us provides you with the certainty that your repair will be perfect by industry standards from the moment you bring your vehicle to our shop to the moment you come back to pick it up.

Breezy Point consistently delivers fantastic technical expertise and customer support thanks to their training by an association with Nissan as a Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop. Being certified with Nissan lets customers of Breezy Point Auto Body know that they don’t have to worry because they are leaving their vehicle with highly trained and competent professionals who truly care about the state of your vehicle and how well it is performing for the sake of your safety and peace of mind.

Here at Breezy Point Auto Body, we are proud to be selected to represent and work closely with Nissan to give you the best possible collision repairs available in this industry. Achieving the Nissan Auto Collision Repair Shop certification excites us not only because we’ve worked hard to be a respected and reputable collision repair shop recognized by automakers but because the resources we’ve gained by our Nissan association, such as higher-quality equipment and tools, benefits our customers most. Your car repairs are what matter most, and the better tools and equipment we have to work on your car, the better our repairs on your vehicle will be.

If your Nissan has suffered damage from a car accident, call Breezy Point Auto Body today at (203) 378-4909. Our Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop technicians will be more than happy to help get your vehicle back in shape and up and running in no time, so you can get back to your day-to-day safely. Why take your Nissan to a regular shop when you can take it to Nissan-Certified Breezy Point Auto Body? Choose us because you can trust us. Visit us online at https://breezypointautobody.com or call (203) 378-4909 to schedule your evaluation today.

Breezy Point Auto Body is a Nissan Certified Auto Collision Repair Shop, meaning they employ top-quality technicians who have extensive knowledge about collision repair and are trained to use the best equipment and tools to make sure the job gets done right. Your Nissan is in good hands when you leave it with Breezy Point Auto Body.

The Repair Process

The Repair Process - We Make Collision Repair A Breeze. Serving Connecticut's Fairfield and New Haven counties since 1960.

What is a deductible and who do I pay?

Car accidents are exactly that; accidents. The process of becoming whole again can be difficult especially if there are injuries and mental trauma. For most people, their car is the sole access to their livelihood, and thus fixing it becomes primary to health and recovery. Getting the right fixes, dealing with insurance companies and repair shops; let’s just say it can be frustrating and time-consuming. Being informed and understanding the process can help ease the frustration.

Once liability of the accident is established, you will know which insurance company you should be dealing with. That will vary if you or the other driver is at fault. The next step of the collision repair process is the deductible.

 

What is a deductible?

A deductible is the difference or amount you have to pay out of pocket for your repairs. I use the term difference because it is the difference of what the insurance company will not cover. Deductibles are usually set and established at the time your car insurance was purchased. Hint: check your fine print. For example, let us say you were involved in an accident and the total damage or repair costs amounted to $2,000 and your insurance policy has a deductible if $500. Then, you are required to pay only that $500 out of pocket. The insurance company covers the other costs.

 

Who do I pay the deductible to?

At Breezy Point Auto Body, Inc. we understand you may not have $500 lying around. For this reason, your deductible will be paid directly to us after the repairs are complete at the time of pick-up, not before so repair work can begin.

 

Betterment charges:

This is the cost to replace parts that are worn and need to be replaced when your car is getting repaired. Your insurance company decides on such charges, and they are typically decided by the mileage of your vehicle.

 

Repair process:

At Breezy Point Auto Body, Inc. our customers are our primary concern. Getting your car the repairs it needs often means haggling with insurance companies and not cutting corners. Rest easy knowing that we will always put your safety first.

We never lose sight of our goals of 5-star customer care accompanied with high-quality service at the most affordable price. Since 1960, we have worked endlessly to master the craft of auto body collision work on any vehicle, foreign and domestic.

We serve both Fairfield and New Haven counties with reliable full-service auto collision repairs. We do repair work on most size vehicles as well as mobile motorhomes and commercial vehicles. Before “going green” became popular, we installed energy efficient systems like intelligent air compressors and electronic spray booths.

Call the friendly and knowledgeable staff of Breezy Point Auto Body, Inc. at (203) 378-4909 or visit our website at https://breezypointautobody.com/ to save time and make an appointment. Remember, when you want the job done right the first time, you come to Breezy Point Auto Body, Inc.

Importance of Choosing the Right Repair Shop

Importance of choosing the right repair shop - Breezy Point Auto Body

Everything about car repairs is an inconvenience. The cost of getting your vehicle from point A to shop B, the cost of repairs; the cost of rentals. Many of us make sacrifices that lessen the burdens of repairs.

In the short-term, such choices might appear a relief. In fact, they do long-term damage to both your vehicle and pocketbook.

According to Polk research, the average age of all cars on the road is more than 11 years. Compared to cars on the road in 1995, that number is up roughly eight years. Informed consumers are holding on to their vehicles for as long as 200,000 miles. This means keeping up with scheduled maintenance. It also means choosing the right shop for your accident repairs.

Most of us are guilty of favoring cost-cutting or sham repair jobs. They are repairs that get our cars back on the road and driving. Taking the time to do research can seem bothersome. More bothersome when faced with repair costs.

However, reaching the rarely uncharted territory of 200,000 miles means thinking of your car as a long-term investment. In other words, choosing the repair shop nearest to you over the right shop could cost you thousands down the line.

Drivers who maintain their cars for 200,000 miles can save upwards of $30,000. You might save several dollars on an Uber picking up your car but cost yourself much more in the long-term.

The last thing to consider when looking for the right repair shop is how close it may or may not be to your location. A quick search for mechanic or body shop reviews can tell you if a shop is or isn’t right for your repairs. Mechanics and body repair shops have taken to advertising a specialty. For example, one shop may specialize in foreign cars another in domestic cars another in Japanese made cars. A shop may specialize in fuel systems or engine rebuilds. If a specialty isn’t clearly stated, call and ask.

You’ve heard stories of recurring car problems. Stories of bags of money flushed down the drain trying to right the same issue time and again. When it comes to your car, lazy thinking comes with a price tag. Only the right shop will solve your problem.

By no means does this mean over-maintenance; that is an absolute waste of money. Rather, take the time to clear your head and vent. Don’t fear second opinions. Don’t fear shopping around. Don’t fear diagnostics. The power to make the right choice is in your hands.

Last, but not least, know your vehicle. Pop your hood and look for cracks in your belts, evidence of leaks, bulges in your hoses. Know the location of the right mechanic and body shop for your vehicle before you need repairs done. This is paramount when buying a used car or any car for that matter. Don’t wait until a problem arises to go to the nearest shop. Be prepared ahead of time.