What Can Your Auto Glass Shop Do For You?

It has happened to most of us. You’re driving along, usually behind a truck, and a rock hits your windshield. When something happens to your car, even a minor “ding” to the windshield, it becomes abundantly clear how important glass is for visibility and a safe operational environment. All auto glass items are literally your windows to the world. So, don’t let auto glass repair or replacement problems go. What may seem minor, like that small crack in your auto windshield, or if you notice side windows that don’t go up and down smoothly anymore, can quickly escalate into much bigger problems that can cost a lot more.

What can your glass repair shop do for you? Let us count the ways!

Auto Glass Today

Today’s shop can rightly be called a “glass center” because of the full range of services, including:

  • Cracked windshield replacement
  • Chipped windshield repair
  • Power window repair
  • Side view mirrors
  • Car trim repairs
  • Glass replacements to meet industry standards
  • And even assistance with insurance claims

If you have been in an accident, call your local auto glass shop. Ask questions and find out how that shop can help with damage control and work with you to determine whether you should file an insurance claim. Your auto policy’s comprehensive section will usually cover damage and some shops will actually file the claim for you and handle all the paperwork too.

What else can your local glass replacement center do for you?

Residential Glass – The Big Bonus

Did you know the auto glass shop can actually help you with creating phenomenal customized looks for enhancing your interior and exterior home décor? This is a real glass shop bonus that many folks never even think of. There are more and more glass related products that can add comfort and beauty to your living space:

  • House window replacement
  • Insulated glass replacement
  • Single pane window repair
  • Storm windows and screens
  • Mirrors
  • Furniture/Table tops

For example, when you start looking and asking questions, you will discover many glass shop items that can be special ordered and customized to reflect your own home decorating ideas. For instance, protecting your furniture with glass tops makes sense to add to and retain the beauty of fine wood. Look for a glass shop that can create the shape, size and thickness you need and can meet your requirements for beveled edges, and seamed or polished edges. When your glass desktop or tabletop is cut to size and ready, it will present a shining surface, can be cleaned with ease, and best of all, it will be protected for the long haul.

Custom mirrors can make a dramatic impact too. Having mirrors created to your own specifications by the local glass shop you thought was only good for auto repairs is the new way to go. Now, you can create mirrored walls, size little mirrors to fit small spaces, bevel the edges, and have everything custom installed to add style and glamour to your home.

The New Glass Centers

The moral of this story is that once small local auto glass repair shops have now evolved. Replacement, repair and installation of auto or home glass now requires special training and techniques to meet challenges that have become more and more complicated with time. The little shops of the past have been transformed and radically changed with technological advances. The result is they are not just shops anymore, but could be called advanced “Glass Centers” because they offer services only offered by larger companies less than 20 years ago. They are the little shops that could – and do!

What to Look for in an Auto Body Shop

Without knowing what to look for, choosing a quality auto body shop is tough. It’s important to select the right auto shop to ensure the vehicle is fixed correctly the first time. It’s also the best way to make sure the shop is honest and reliable. There are many important features of a good shop, including an experienced staff and certifications. It can also help to read customer reviews before making a selection.

A Certified Shop

A good body shop is certified by the largest auto organization. Facilities that gain the approval of the organization have proven their abilities as certification is often a lengthy process. To become approved, an auto shop must demonstrate it has the latest equipment, qualified technicians and a proper facility. It must also show it offers above average training to its employees. Larger associations always collect feedback from prior customers as well before issuing an approval. Auto shops can also receive certification from parts manufacturers and organizations like Autobody Alliance, which requires the shop to meet certain qualifications.

Qualified and Experienced Staff

A good auto body shop has qualified staff with a number of certifications. Certification from ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) is especially important. ASE is a non-profit organization that offers certifications to automobile technicians that show proficiency in their trade. Technicians may also have certification from car manufacturers like GM, Chrysler, Toyota and Nissan, showing their knowledge and experience dealing with particular car brands. Some auto technicians also receive aftermarket training from Bendix, Moog, or NAPA. Most training requires a great deal of knowledge and experience and demonstrates a technician is a professional in their field.

Positive Customer Reviews

When possible, former clients should be consulted about their experience with the shop. Some resources to find reviews are online, making it easy to decide if a body shop has good feedback from the public. Reviews should mention that the vehicle was fixed properly the first time and work was completed in a timely fashion. Positive reviews should also discuss whether a warranty was offered by the body shop and if the facility was clean and orderly. A facility that has the approval of a large automobile association has shown a history of positive feedback from customers, although it’s always a good idea to check into a shop as much as possible.

Accepts All Insurance

Another important aspect of a good body shop is its acceptance of all forms on insurance. An auto body shop that accepts all insurance providers demonstrates it has experience working with insurance companies to settle claims quickly. A shop that is hesitant to accept major insurance providers is a red flag that something may be wrong. This is also a matter of convenience and makes it easier for the vehicle owner to select a shop they feel comfortable with.

Selecting the right auto body shop requires a bit of patience and consideration. For example, choosing the first shop available can be a disaster if the employees aren’t trained properly. A good auto shop is clean and up-to-date with a friendly and knowledgeable staff. The shop should have positive reviews and a range of certifications for both the facility and technicians. It should also accept all forms of insurance, making repairs easy and convenient.

How To Find The Best Auto Body Collision Repair Center For You And What Constitutes As A Good Shop

The event of an accident can be very stressful. Finding the right Auto Body Shop can be just as excruciating, I hope to alleviate most of your worries in this article explaining what makes a good (if not great) Auto Body Shop, and how you can find the one that’s right for you.

The best auto collision shops are determined by the quality of work/materials that are applied, and the timeliness of the overall job. Quality can be separated by two different attributes (1) parts/materials and (2) labor. The quality of factory OEM parts far exceeds that of the aftermarket kind. Sure aftermarket products are cheaper, but that’s what’s also happening to your vehicle it’s being “cheapened.” Simply put the materials used are of poor quality, this problem magnifies with misshapen parts due to terrible molds. A good shop will avoid this route by any means necessary. With a factory OEM part the vehicle owner is maintaining the value of their automobile, along with its structural durability. The bondo, primer, and paint needed to repair your vehicle should be of the highest quality in order to produce the best resulting finished product. Most auto body shops have converted to water-based environmentally safe painting, and only a good body shop will offer a lifetime guarantee on these paint jobs.

The quality of labor is a significant factor in a vehicle’s finished result. Starting with properly trained technicians who should be certified in their field of automotive work (iCar, PPG, etc.). Their experience plays a bigger role as well, for example we have employees with various related backgrounds in mechanics, engineering, and custom fabrication. This helps out when rapid knowledge is needed regarding a vehicle with custom modifications. A good collision repair shop will also have knowledge in all major automobile models including old and new.

A shop’s slow repair process can sometimes be unintentional. Insurance companies are required to pay within 10 days after a claim receipt has been made, but this isn’t always the case; Insurance companies avoid payment by evading phone calls to “wear you out”. A good shop will stand up for their customer, and deal directly with the insurance. This is not to be confused with a “direct repair shop” or a “preferred provider” shop that works with the insurance to save them money and devalue your vehicle with aftermarket parts in order to secure work for themselves. A good shop will advocate for their customer against the insurance company in order to receive optimum repair coverage for your vehicle. Once the correct claim estimate is fashioned a well-established body shop will order the parts needed to repair the vehicle as soon as possible. It is important to do this right away to keep from back orders, shipping delays, or any other problems that can occur (like the wrong part showing up). The overall turnaround time is determined by the amount of work needed for the vehicle, delays caused by insurance and parts companies, and the effectiveness of the auto collision repair shop.

A great way to determine how effective an Auto Body Shop operates is to use review sites. Yelp is a great way to see how well a collision repair shop is doing. You will most likely be able to verify a business’s time or quality based off of reviews created for that specific shop. Another way to find reviews regarding a shop is to use Facebook or Google Reviews. Although these sites aren’t as reputable as yelp (due to superior algorithm functions), they can give you more perspective of how well that specific collision repair shop is doing. Try to use your best judgment, and don’t always trust every review. Remember you have the choice to choose the body shop you want! Don’t be steered by your insurance company or anyone else. Do the research and educate yourself, and I promise you will be satisfied with your newly repaired vehicle.

Benefits of a Full-Service Automotive Shop

Chances are, you’ve probably taken a vehicle or two for a quick oil change at a chain auto repair shop in between major services, or used a national chain for brake or other specific repair work.

While many of these shops may be reliable and honest, their limited service menus and low pricing may compromise overall car care. Their mechanics may not be as seasoned as those in independently owned, full service shops. They may recommend more frequent servicing than necessary for low-cost jobs like oil changes, and use a cheaper, off-brand oil that might not be the best for your car.

Primary Care for Your Car

Mechanics in a full-service auto shop are sort of like primary care physicians: they see the entire car, and not just the brakes or engine. Full-service auto mechanic shops have lower employee turnover than the corporate shops, which are notorious for high turnover. At a full-service shop, mechanics are exposed to more cars, models, and technologies and are aware of performance issues that customers bring in along with their solutions.

Independent automotive shop employees receive more training about new car specs as well as services needed by older cars. They understand the impact of a particular climate on vehicle maintenance (for example, oil changes should be more frequent in extreme hot or cold climates) and can advise customers about what they can do on their own to prolong their vehicles’ life-cycle and efficiency.

Do Full Service Shops Charge More?

In general, you will get the most reasonable charges at a full-service shop and individualized serviced. Independent full-service shops charge a flat rate for their work, which are often lower than dealership charges because of lower overhead. (They are not, after all, paying for extra space used to showcase new or used cars, which are very sensitive to greater market influences.) Mechanics and technicians at independent shops are paid by the hour or receive a salary based upon their skills and job performance, just like most businesses. This frees staff from pressure to maximize the number of repairs they do and the temptation to cut corners.

More Attention to Customer Service?

Independent shops live and die by good customer relations. A good word from a customer to friends and neighbors or placed on Google is essential for an independent shop to thrive.

As with any service-oriented business, customer service can make a huge difference. Independent shops understand that customers value trust and work to build relationships with their customers. They will, for example, be more likely to get customers in a routine to bundle repairs, such as oil changes (at proper intervals) with tire rotation and balancing, which can save time and money.

Surveys Show: Independent Shops Preferred to Dealerships

Consumer Reports asks car owners each year about how satisfied they are with repairs they had over the past 12 months. The most recent data from 2012 follows a long-term trend that shows overall preference for independent shops over dealerships. Not surprisingly, dealership customers complained about high prices more than customers of independent shops, 42% to 32%.

Who prefers independent shops the most? An even mix of owners of mid-range and high-end cars and include Chrysler, Dodge, Jaguar, Jeep, Nissan, Mercedes, and Volvo owners. Dealership fans tend to be owners of the most expensive cars including Porsche.

Source: Car repair shops buying guide. Consumer Reports, June 2014.

Car Servicing and Maintenance: Get The Best Maintenance Services From A Reputed Auto Repair Shop

Cars- A Costly Investment

Buying a car is an investment. Unfortunately, it’s going to cost you a lot of money involving loan payments, registration fee, insurance coverage, maintenance, servicing etc. Vehicle repair and maintenance expenses have now become a part and parcel of life. If you fail to take good care of your car then be prepared for an unexpected breakdown.

Maintenance Schedule- How Important It Is?

Vehicle maintenance and servicing is one of the best ways to keep your car in a flawless condition. Remember, your vehicle needs to undergo a maintenance check up every month. With the right maintenance and servicing it will last for a long time and you will also enjoy a smooth drive.

Most of the manufacturers usually offer free servicing packages to the new car owner for the first three months. So car owners don’t need to spend a single penny in the first three months for servicing. Always listen to the advice of the manufacturers because they can help you keep your car in a great shape.

If you are buying a car for the first time, you should first get some advice from your friends or family on vehicle maintenance. Moreover, you can also ask them to refer a reliable and trustworthy mechanic for repairs. You should never ever take your vehicle for granted. Just like you go for a regular health check up to your doctor your car also needs the same care and maintenance for a safe and smooth drive.

A DIY Approach For Vehicle Maintenance- Is It Right?

Never ever take a DIY approach for vehicle maintenance unless it is a very small problem and you know how to fix it. If you don’t have any knowledge about car problems it’s always advisable to visit a reputed servicing station. Have a look at some of the great tips to keep in mind to take care of your cars in the best way:-

· Regular Car Servicing And Maintenance

It is very important for an owner to follow the servicing schedule properly according to the distance/miles. Mostly, it’s the company who set the schedule for the owners.

· Oil change

Every vehicle owner should go for an oil change once a year. Oil change also depends on the distance travelled/miles. Always listen to your mechanic. With timely oil change you can enjoy a smooth drive.

· Check Fluid Level Of Your Car

Of course, you can check the fluid level of your car on your own. In case, you don’t know how to do it ask your mechanic to help you. Check coolant fluid, brake fluid and transmission fluids which are some of the most important fluids.

Conclusion

Educate yourself about automobile repairs and maintenance. It is a fact that there are good mechanics out there to help you with repairs but there are also bad ones who only want to cheat you. Take some time from your busy schedule to find the best repair shop.

Happy driving!

7 Tips for Better Auto Repair Shop Advertising to Increase Car Counts

Most auto repair shops do the same advertising over and over and still expect different results. Maybe it’s the sales person that talks them up and they get ‘visions of dollars dancing in their heads’. Well, from the responses I hear about, the only visions of dollars are in the sales person’s head.

When you’re promoting your auto repair shop to increase car counts, use the following 7 Auto Repair Shop Advertising Tips as a guideline so that you get a better response.

1) Your ad shouldn’t be about YOU: Most of the auto shop ads I see talk about everything THEY do; but they forget about the customer. The customer (like everyone else) is only looking for ‘What’s In It For Them’. What is their benefit? It’s not the fact that you’re family owned; It’s not the fact you’ve been in business for 25 years. You have to advertise the benefits that the customer is going to get.

2) Do you provide a solution to a problem? Why else would anyone look for an auto service shop if they didn’t have a problem? Does your ad speak to that problem? Do you provide a solution? Sorry, but being family owned is not a solution to any auto service problem that I’ve heard of.

3) How many ways to you have to contact you? Remember, there’s the internet and websites; e-mail; the Mobile Internet (for those accessing online searches from their phone); some people still use fax machines too! What about your phone numbers? How many do you have? Do you have a 24 hour help line? Do you use QR Codes to direct visitors to a Mobile Website?; Do you have a mobile website?; What about a 24 hour message line so I can get information about you before I visit? Make it easy for your customer to get in touch and give them as many ways as possible to connect.

4) Always include a non-threatening way for prospects to contact you: In some cases, people just want to get more information. Remember, they only purchase from those they know, trust and like. Do you have methods to deliver that information? What about a FREE Report that I can download from your website. What about a FREE Trial offer? Remove the risk and give people a non-threatening way to find out more about you.

5) Quit trying to sell from your ad: How many of those fancy 10% discount coupons have you ever received back? Yeah, I figured. Your ad isn’t about getting your customer to buy when YOU want them to. Your ad is about getting them to buy SOMETHING so that you have a customer; then continue to market to them with ongoing offers, discounts, promotions and specials.

6) Make your ad a way to collect leads; not to sell: This is really important as it’s the perfect way to build your ‘Sales Funnel’. Yes, people may be interested in your auto shop services, but typically they don’t purchase from those they don’t know, trust or like. Make your ad a ‘Lead Generation’ ad so that those interested will get to know you better.

7) Most Important – Create a Strong Call To Action: Nothing is going to happen unless the prospect takes an action. Buying something from you just because you placed and ad in a newspaper typically doesn’t work, right? (I am sure you can attest to that!) But taking an action can be as simple as getting them to download your report; Texting to get an offer or special; Listening to a 24 hour recorded message. There’s a lot of ways, but the important thing is that they take action.

Following these 7 tips will help improve your auto service shop advertising and let you build your business and increase your car counts!

Selecting an Auto Body Repair Shop

Due to the amount of time we spend on the road the chances of us needed to find a great auto body shop may come up more than once. Most of us get a little flustered at the thought of searching for the right place that can work in your price range. No one ever knows where to start though. Here are a few tips on choosing the perfect auto body shop for you.

The first step is finding an auto body shop that will fix your car to look like the collision never happened. Some good auto body shops will only have the ability to fix your car to a point called pre-loss condition. Pre-loss condition is when the mechanic fixes your cars appearance, body structure, and keeps your cars mechanical reliability.

Next comes customer service, our favorites. Everyone has horror stories about bad customer service in numerous places of business. However, if you are calling an auto body shop that means that lives were once in danger so they should immediately ask if anyone was injured. Their chance at making money should never overshadow your needs or concerns. Many body shops are only in the business because they know that everyone will need to have their car repaired at some point. Most of those businesses do not have a skilled and knowledgeable staff. That is why it is so vital to find the right body shop so you and your insurance company are getting what you have paid for.

When dealing with your insurance company, make sure that you fight for the right to pick your own repair shop. Most insurance companies and repair shops have a deal worked out to lower the shops cost in exchange for giving them business. The shop then cuts corners and leave out steps to keep the cost down. This in turn means you are paying the insurance company the inflated premiums and your deductible but are only receiving second rate repair. The insurance company may respond saying that they can not guarantee the work of other shops but in reality all good shops guarantee their work for as long as you own that car. If a shop says that they do not have that standard, it is a sign to keep looking.

Always ask the person who is estimating your damage questions. If you are working with a smaller shop the person you are speaking with will probably be the one working directly on your car. In larger chain shops they have sales people who do the estimates and have no direct connection or knowledge about your car. The techs working on your car may not want to rewrite you an estimate to make it the correct amount. Never be afraid to ask questions if you are confused. Larger shops may have fancy equipment and tools to make people believe that they are much more advanced then other shops but in reality, those fancy tools are rarely even used in fixing your car.

Always ask the body shop about their insurance programs or DRP (direct repair programs) because this may mean they can not create their own business and need the help of a deal. Not all shops that have these programs are bad shops but it can defiantly be a red flag.

The very best way to find a good body shop is by word of mouth, so ask around. Most people would never send you to a place where they were not satisfied with the work they were given.

Now when you are stuck in a bind after a collision you will have the right information and questions to ask before selection the body shop for you. The last and the most important thing to remember is, if you ever feel uncomfortable or pressured by a body shop, move on because they may be desperate for business because they are not known for their good service.

Choose a Good Auto Repair Shop to Keep Your Car Working Properly

Have you ever been out driving on the road without a care in the world and suddenly your car starts to make a funny noise? While you turn down the radio so you can hear the sound clearly, do you start to think about all of the things that could be wrong with your vehicle? Maybe you start thinking about the last time you took your vehicle in for repairs. No matter what you start to think about during that time, one thing you can’t ignore is the fact that your car needs to go to an auto repair facility.

Instead of taking any chances on the problem getting worse, you need to contact your local auto repair shop and find out when is a good time for you to bring your vehicle in for service. The longer you drive around ignoring the issue, the larger your repair bill will be. If you don’t have a good auto repair facility that you can take your car in too, it is time for you to start looking for one.

Any auto shop that you decide to take your vehicle to needs to be run and managed by state certified mechanics. You do have the option of choosing to have your vehicle serviced at the dealership or at an independent shop. You may want to check around and get some recommendations on where you should go so you don’t end up wasting a ton of time. Some places are pretty fast when it comes to repairing your vehicle and others may be a bit slower. Some places require that you leave your car with them and others will fix it while you wait.

Keep in mind that all auto repair shops aren’t the same. While many of their workers may hold the same credentials, the rate charge for service can differ greatly. Don’t be so quick to go with a facility that charges rock bottom prices, because you may not be happy with the end result. You need to make sure that any parts they are using on your vehicle are new unless you have specified otherwise.

Pay attention to how you are treated when you visit different auto repair facilities. No matter what type of vehicle you have or what type of work needs to be done on your car, you should be treated as if you are the best customer in the world. That means that any questions or concerns you have should be addressed promptly. You should be treated as if your time and patronage are very valuable. If there are going to be any delays or unexpected issues concerning your vehicle’s repairs you should be notified as soon as possible. A good shop is one that communicates with its customers every step of the way and charges them fair and competitive prices. The work they perform should be exceptional quality and they may even offer warranties with their work. The bottom line is you should end up a happy and satisfied customer after having your car worked on.

How to Select an Auto Repair Shop

Selecting an auto body repair shop can be a bewildering and confusing experience. There are hundreds of shops to choose from in any city and they all claim to offer the best prices, the fastest service, and the highest quality. Can they all be trusted? Or should you be on the lookout for scam artists and individuals trying to take advantage of unsuspecting customers?

Choose Value for Auto Body Repair

Low prices are an attractive promotion, but it is not always best to just go with the body shop that is offering the lowest priced repair. Though most body shops do honest work, there are some that cut corners or install used parts with informing customers just so they can lure people in with rock-bottom pricing. Getting value for car repairs is paramount – value is the combination of reasonable pricing and high quality work completed in a fair amount of time.

Protecting Yourself and Getting the Most out of an Auto Repair Shop

Before deciding on the low bid, or any price quote, find out more about the body shop. Do some research on the Internet and ask around for any reviews and testimonials. There are great online review sites on which people give unsolicited opinions about their experiences with local businesses. Any auto body shop you are considering should have mostly positive reviews – don’t let a few negative ones scare you away as almost all businesses will have a few dissatisfied customers from time to time.

A recent trend in the industry are the use of auto accident consultants. These individuals or companies have established relationships with a network of auto repair specialists and can offer understanding and insight into the workings of the industry. Car crash consultants are often able to offer connections to legitimate repair specialists and may even be able to save you money on a car repair.

The other way to protect yourself is to ask your insurance agent or carrier. Though you are not required to use a body shop they recommend, they do work with a variety of different legitimate repair shops. Using a recommendation from your insurance company may not mean you will get the lowest price, but it will ensure that your insurance company will not balk at paying the balance due.

Finding the right auto body shop can be frustrating, but the frustration level can be reduced with a little research and effort. Spend some time on the Internet, and talk to family, friends, neighbors, and peers. One last piece of advice – get at least three quotes before you select a shop. Shopping around may take a little extra time, but it is often worth the effort.

What to Consider When Picking an Auto Repair Shop

Picking an auto repair shop for your vehicle’s needs is essential. For most who have a car, the convenience of mobility is simply non-negotiable. When something happens to your car, having the right pair of hands to get your car running again is important.

When picking a shop, it is important to have one that is near your place of residence.

That way, anytime your car is having issues, repairs are easy to come by; not to mention if you are in a car accident the proximity to your house makes it easier to get your car back home. Further, with a shop that is near your garage, you are more likely to have your car checked for regular preventive maintenance. You can have your oil changed and your car checked more often. Also, if your shop is near you, you are more likely to have access to promos; such as free brake service and free general car checkups. With preventive car maintenance within reach, you are likely to spend less on major car repairs.

When it comes to cars, most only want skilled maintenance workers to fix their car. For your peace of mind, look for auto repair shops that have ASE-certified mechanics on board. This certification will let you know if the mechanic is qualified to do specific car services such as oil changes, tune-ups for manual cars, brake repairs and everything else under the hood. The certification they have will put you at ease knowing that the repairs that are being carried out are being done correctly and efficiently. You may also want to check the Better Business Bureau and see the number of filed complaints for that particular shop. This data can lend insight on the nature of work that you can expect from the auto repair shop you want to work with.

When choosing an auto shop for services, it is important to check that your car warranty will not be voided in the process. Some maintenance repair shops are not certified to do repairs, thus voiding your manufactures warranty. There are shops that are duly recognized by your car manufacturer, and it is important to go to an auto repair shop that is authorized to do car repairs within the clauses of your warranty. Ask your car manufacturer for authorized repair shops that are near your area.

Further, consider the labor costs that the auto repair shop offers. Doing price comparisons between 2 or 3 shops can help you narrow down your decision and will also help you keep on budget for your car. Aside from choosing the best labor cost, choose an auto shop that offer guaranteed services and warranties. Knowing that an auto repair shop guarantees their work also removes a lot of stress when it comes to ensuring your vehicle is in the best hands possible.

Finding the best shop can be a daunting challenge, however if you ensure the items above are covered, you will be successful in your quest for a reliable repair shop.