Anchorage, Alaska — August 8, 2017 In the past year, Better Business Bureau Serving the Northwest has received more than 34,000 inquiries and 340 complaints against auto repair and service companies. To combat industry complaints BBB Serving the Northwest advises customers on the best ways to find an auto repair shop.
According to a AAA survey, consumers are spending nearly $800 per year in auto repairs. To make matters worse, more than a quarter of American drivers either skipped or delayed recommended auto service driving up costs even higher.
“One of the best things you can do to ensure all of your auto repair needs are dealt with fairly and accurately is to hire someone you can trust,” Tyler Andrew, BBB Northwest CEO, said. “We are proud to work alongside the Office of Consumer Protection in urging car owners to shop smart and safely.”
Since BBB Serving Alaska has received over 5,000 auto repair and service inquiries in the past year, BBB recommends the following for a smooth ride:
- Follow the vehicle manual: Maintenance costs vary depending on the make and model of the vehicle, so consumers should follow the recommended guidelines in the owner’s manual. Pay close attention to any lit dashboard signals, unusual noises or odors.
- Start with trust: Make sure the shop has proper licenses and complies with local laws. Check business profiles at bbb.org/northwest to see if a business is accredited, in good standing and read reviews and complaints. Consumers may also click here to see if the Office of Consumer Protection has had any complaints about specific Montana businesses.
- Ask for a written estimate: Before authorizing any work, have the mechanic do a walkthrough and write down the exact repairs and the costs for each. Ask to be notified first of any additional repairs on the vehicle. Before leaving the shop, consumers should understand all of the labor rates, guarantees and shop policies.
- Pay attention at pick up: Ask for a summary of all work completed and get all guarantees in writing when picking up the vehicle. Also, don’t be afraid to follow up with any problems with the car after the work is complete.
If consumers are unable to reach a satisfactory repair, they can leave a BBB review.