Before you pay a mechanic, be sure to ask them how legitimate the shop is. A shop that specializes in diagnostics may offer an objective opinion about the repairs you need. It is also a good idea to ask for an estimate. A written estimate should state the condition your vehicle is in, the parts and labor charges, and any time or money limits. Some states even require this kind of estimate. It is important to understand your rights and your limits before agreeing to a repair.
You don’t want to make a rash decision based on appearance. Whether the shop is legitimate depends on its level of training and the tools they have. It isn’t enough to judge a book by its cover; you need to check if they’re certified. Check whether the shop honors warranties, and if there are any. Certified shops are required to keep their certifications, but this doesn’t mean the work they perform is excellent.
Another way to determine if a shop is legitimate is to ask to see the vehicle that’s being repaired. If the shop won’t let you see the car, then they’re probably not legitimate. And if they refuse, then you can be sure that they’re lying to you about the repairs. And secrecy is never a good sign, especially in the auto repair industry. And if you’re considering paying someone else to fix your car, ask for a written estimate.