How Do I Estimate Car Repairs?

You may need to estimate car repairs, whether you’ve been in an accident, or your car simply needs routine work done as parts wear out. 

This task can seem daunting, leaving you wondering where to begin. Below are some guidelines for getting an estimate on car repairs.

Gather Information

If you’ve got an idea what the issue is with your car, you can start there, such as the alignment being off. Your car’s manual also gives guidelines for when routine maintenance should occur. For straightforward repairs like these, you can do some research online to get an idea of costs. There are plenty of online tools on reliable sites like Kelley Blue Book that can give you a ballpark estimate of repair costs. The estimate will give a range for costs in your location, broken down by parts and labor, giving you a baseline for what costs you can expect. 

Find a Reliable Auto Shop

It’s easy enough to research repairs on your own if you know what they are, but many times your car experiences symptoms of a problem, and you need a diagnosis. This is when it is time to ask a mechanic. It always helps to have a referral from a trusted friend or family member, but if not, it’s even more important to do a little research and check out the reviews for any potential auto shops. Online reviews can be telling, but you should also take into account whether the business is backed by the Better Business Bureau (BBB). It also is helpful to find an auto shop that specializes in your make of car, as they will have more expertise. A good rule of thumb is to get estimates from three separate shops.

Estimate Car Repairs from the Auto Shops

Once you’ve narrowed your options, call ahead and schedule appointments with the auto shops for an in-person estimate. The technician will walk with you to look at the car, so that you can point out issues and damage. They may take photos to help with the assessment, and will take down the VIN and odometer as well. From there, the estimator will provide you with a written assessment of repairs needed and the estimated cost of parts and labor. 

The entire process should take about a half-hour, so that you can be on your way. Having the estimate in writing should provide a detailed breakdown showing which repairs are needed, along with the cost of parts and labor for each. This allows you to check line-by-line that you are getting a fair estimate from each auto shop. The cheapest option isn’t always the best option; you’ll want to choose a mechanic that can not only diagnose the problem, but explain it in a way that is easy for you to understand. 

Schneider Auto Karosserie Body & Paint Can Help

If you are in the Salt Lake City, Utah, area and need to estimate car repairs, Schneider Auto Karosserie is a trusted destination. While we specialize in European models, our expert automotive technicians provide quality service for all makes and models, foreign and domestic. With an A+ BBB rating, you’ll know you can trust our exceptional work, whether you need frame or structural repair, or a cosmetic touch-up. Call and schedule an appointment at (801) 484-9400, or contact us online for a free repair estimate within 2 business days.