How Do I Avoid Getting Ripped Off?

 It’s easy once you understand how it can happen in the first place.

The first and most common way is not planning down time for your car. Usually you end up going where it is the quickest and closest or you have a coupon for a cheap oil change. Remember quality service and materials are essential in maintaining your car in top mechanical condition.

Not all, but most coupons are just like the hooks used when anglers go fishing, that worm looks really good until the fish is in the boat and then it is all over. Usually in those environments there is a lot of pressure for up selling and at times making a mountain out of a molehill.

It’s usually an atmosphere where the relationship between the car owner and the proprietor is friendly, yet impersonal, and a relationship between the car owner and the mechanic is non-existent. In such an environment if you are dealing with a dishonest shop it could be very hard to detect any insincerity when you are being sold a bill of goods. Some of the more shrewd victims will at least call around to make sure their not paying too much, but lets face it if you don’t need it, it’s too much at any price.

Another way, is to find yourself out of town, rolling down the highway without a care when suddenly you notice there is something going on with your car. A light, a smell, vibration or a sound that inspires you to quickly get off at the next exit and find help. Being in an unfamiliar place, far from home and motivated to be somewhere else, can put you in a vulnerable position. You might even hear yourself uttering the words “just fix it” even before you hear the grand total, after all at this point what choice do you have.

There is another way to find yourself paying too much to keep your car safe and on the road. It can however be far worse. Its not malicious as if dealing with a crook, it can even be innocent. That’s dealing with a shop manned by inexperienced or poorly trained individuals, or a shop that has not invested in the tools and or information systems necessary these days to provide your car with proper service and repairs. This type of shop can create unnecessary expense because they do a lot of guessing. The reason I say they are worse is because they add the element of danger. If you are dealing with a place that thinks a pad slap is a proper brake repair, “if it’s tight it’s good enough”, or they have the inability to spot a problem, you can find yourself on the road with a false sense of security. Ignorance may be bliss, but an avoidable breakdown will take care of that pretty quick.

I’ve always liked Sy Sim’s “An educated consumer is our best customer”. Take the time to get know your car. Start with the owner’s manual and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Take what you find online generally with a grain of salt; your doctor would give you the same advice. At Alliance Service Center we can help you with all of the above.

At Alliance Service Center we seldom even think about coupons. We have a no-nonsense approach, honest service at a fair price. Our loyal customers save more money over time because of our honesty, than those who hop from place to place hunting a cheap price. We won’t try to sell you anything you don’t need to insure the longevity of your car or it’s safe operation. Personally I despise the practice. We believe that it’s not just about cars, it’s about people, we care about our customers. We feel your best interest is not served with a phone quote. We provide trip checks that insure you vehicle is safe and road worthy against all but the unforeseeable.

I’d like to point out that our loyal customers that bring their vehicles to us for all their needs, up to and especially oil changes, seldom if ever get a long list of must do’s before they leave and virtually never have a problem on the road. How would you like to join that club?

At Alliance Service Center we have invested in tools, equipment and information. That, coupled with decades of experience and ASE certification, makes us a great choice. We can’t imagine anyone wakes up with a smile on their face and a spring in their step at the thought of taking their car to the shop…. but at Alliance Service Center, we understand the value of quality.

You can be sure we will care for you and your car like family.

Lance Campbell