Okay, this sounds like something out of the tabloid press but it is very serious. You trust your mechanic to do a thorough job with any auto repair and do so at a reasonable price. Not every person who works on your car is ethical or honest. You do not have to interrogate a mechanic to find out if this person is being honest. You simply have to be like Sherlock Holmes and knows the clues.
First of all, if the mechanic says something is broken you should insist on seeing the part. Your mechanic should also be able to explain the damage and why a new part is important. In the event of a new part you ought to ask whether or not the mechanic uses after-market parts. These are cheaper than the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), and may not be as effective. Furthermore, your warranty might not cover aftermarket parts. The mechanic should only be repairing or working on what has been approved by you. There is no reason for this automotive professional to work on anything without first of all seeking your permission. Failure to do so is a bona fide cheat on the part of the mechanic.
An unethical mechanic will tell you a certain recommended repair is too difficult to easily explain. Should that be the case, then why bother with the repair? Your auto mechanic should be able to explain to you why a certain service has to be done. Do not authorize any work until you are satisfied with the explanation.
It is understandable that a mechanics want as much business as possible from you in a given visit. However, that does not give license to do what is unnecessary. A classic example is what might happen when it comes to muffler repair. The mechanic might not only suggest the muffler be replaced, but the exhaust pipes as well. The reality may be that the exhaust pipes do not need attention for months. When a mechanic says multiple services is quite possible this person is hoping you will give a blanket approval. Always ask why each separate suggested service has to be performed immediately.
Time is a thief and so is a mechanic who spends too much time doing a simple repair. You have a right to ask how much the hourly rate is for a service to be rendered, and approximately how long it takes to do the work. If the mechanic says it takes usually in hour, but then spends three hours doing the work, there may be an ethical problem. Some of the added expenses may be almost too small to notice, but you need to keep your eyes sharp and your hearing focused. If you are going in for an oil change and the mechanic suggests the transmission flush and some other fluids worked on, you stand your ground with the oil change or request proof the additional work is important.
You should not be made to feel coercion or bullying from any auto mechanic. After all, it is your car and your money. If you do not believe a given service is necessary the auto mechanic must respect your wishes. Any further discussion or attempt to persuade you is a possible sign of someone trying to take advantage of your ignorance. You are a consumer who does not need to be pressured unnecessarily by anyone. A bullying auto mechanic is a sure sign you do not need to work with this individual.
Should you feel that you are being cheated by the auto mechanic it should be reported to the Better Business Bureau. You can go one step further courtesy of the Internet. Consumer review boards are available and you can express your dissatisfaction with the service rendered. As a matter fact, you should check these boards before seeking auto repair to weed out the unethical mechanics. Take the opportunity to spread the word about any mechanic who is trying to cheat you. Other consumers appreciate that consideration.
Please don’t feel that all auto mechanics are dishonest. The large majority are ethical and want to be of service to you. They have no problem at all explaining the services they are going to render and wait your approval before starting. If you establish a good relationship with one auto mechanic the trust engendered will make seeking service a lot easier.