Dealership and Local Mechanics Foley AL
Professional Collision Foley
(251) 943-8102, 001-2004
14899 Highway 59
Blue Seal Certified
National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE)
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P O Box 958
3910 Linton Ln
Discount Auto Sales LLC
1901 S McKenzie St
Cockrells Body Shop of Foley I
21473 US Highway 98
Franks RV Sales
14809 State Highway 59
RV and Camper Repair
Anthony Allen Automotive, Inc.
320 N McKenzie St
R and S Paving and Grading Inc
21899 Doc McDuffie Road
Phantom Paint and Custom
10210 Willis Road
Fabrication and Restoration,Motorcycle Fabrication
Wilsons Automotive Tire & Exha
301 N McKenzie St
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Dealer vs. Local Mechanic
Where Should You Take In Your Car, The Dealer or The Local Mechanic? By Zach Bowman, DriverSide Contributor
Taking care of your vehicle can save you serious money in fuel and resale value, but you may have found yourself wondering if you can save even more by taking you car into to the local mechanic rather than the dealer.
Maybe the ghost stories about cars coming back from local guys with more things broken than fixed have kept you away, or you're perhaps you are just worried about voiding your warranty . Either way, the truth is there are benefits and drawbacks to both the big boys and the local guys.
Paul Yotka, Service Manager at Steven Toyota, Kia and Scion in Harrisonburg, Va., will tell you that there's no question about whether or not you should bring your car home for regular checkups and maintenance.
"We have factory trained technicians who will diagnose the problem right the first time," he said. "A lot of little shops don't have the tools to do so."
According to Yotka, one of the dangers of going to a smaller garage is that diagnosis is a guess and check situation, meaning that you may end up paying to replace perfectly good parts. That doesn't mean misdiagnosis can't happen under factory care, but the service manager says his one-two combo of experienced personnel and high-tech tools limits that likelihood.
Randy Faul, the owner of a two-bay family shop in the same town, represents the flip side of the coin. Faul says his biggest expense is keeping up with changes in technology and the tools necessary to repair today's increasingly computerized cars.
"We've got all the scanners to test pretty much anything," he said, "but the dealers don't let all of the information out on newer cars, so we can't do everything."
Training and experience can make the difference between going on your way after repair work and limping back through the garage doors a week later. Factory service shops tend to have the resources to keep their worker bees up to date on training and new vehicle systems, where as smaller outfits may not.
Yotka was proud to point out that one of his Kia service techs was ranked third in the world among technicians after a competition in Korea. "It's easy to fix cars when you've got guys like that," he said.
Faul says dealers are constantly searching for new auto technicians, meaning there's a significant turnover rate and a good chance a greenhorn is going to be wrenching on your ride. The Local Joe says that his son, the only other worker in the shop, has over four years of technician school behind him.
Faul also claims a level of personal service that many large dealer shops can't offer. While that warm fuzzy feeling is hard to quantify, it means a lot to be comfortable letting a stranger poke around under your hood.
"I'm able to help people," Faul said. "It's not all about the bottom line at the end of the week for me."
Click here to read the rest of the article from DriverSide