I've taken my car to the mechanic what seems like an unreasonable number of times to fix an issue. Mostly, the car keeps overheating. First, they replaced the entire radiator. The next time it broke down, it was the water pump, which also necessitated a new timing belt. It's been overheating again, and came close to breaking down. I talked with a guy who knows cars, but is not a mechanic. He says if it's still having problems, it's likely the thermostat. Am I overreacting to not want this same shop to fix it? [more inside]
My mother lives in Olympia, WA, drives a Honda Fit, and says she needs to get her brakes checked (among whatever else). She also thinks every mechanic is out to scam her. Please give me some recommendations that I can pass on to her. [more inside]
Car Talkers of MeFi, help me solve a mystery! My 2001 Subaru Forester had a cylinder misfiring: car shook, check engine light flashed. Then it healed itself and the mechanic couldn't tell what was wrong, or that anything was wrong at all, so I brought it home. Then it started misfiring again tonight. Then it healed itself partway, but the check engine light is still on. What should I think and what should I do? Details below the fold. [more inside]
As a result of a series of events, it looks like I will be driving my boyfriend's older Bronco as a daily vehicle for a while. Before I start doing this, the Bronco should be tuned up and given a once-over and determined to be mechanically sound. I don't have an existing relationship with an auto mechanic. Can you recommend one in Portland, Oregon? [more inside]
We started having trouble with our car almost a year ago. We paid $1500 for a repair that failed, and the mechanic tried twice more without additional charges. Now, it’s failed again, but the mechanic had heart surgery and closed down the shop, and I haven’t been able to reach him. Is there anything left to do, or do we just have to accept that we’re out the money without a fix, and start over with someone new? [more inside]
I've been going to a repair shop here in LA for a while that I found through the Car Talk fora, but have been increasingly unhappy with them. I took my girlfriend's 2002 Ford Focus in to get an estimate on replacing the mirror, and got back a quote of $175ish, $100 for the part and $75 for the labor (meaning, an hour and a quarter for them at $60 per hour). The thing is, there are third-party mirrors for about $30, and from doing the same thing on a car years ago, I remember it taking about 20 minutes with the right tools. Are they trying to rip me off? Is this a reasonable ballpark for what seems like pretty minor work (the whole assembly pops on and off)? I don't have the tools to do this now (I'd need a deeper socket), so should I buy the part and take it to them? Are dealer mirrors really that superior? (It's out of warranty by now, obviously.) Should I take it to someone else? [more inside]
There is a 1989 Chinook for sale in Sacramento, CA. I live a few hours away, cannot make the drive up unless I'm going to purchase, and do not have the knowledge necessary to actually understand whether the vehicle bits or the RV bits are in acceptable condition. [more inside]
I'm looking for a good mechanic around Mount Pleasant or East Vancouver. I have a 1999 toyota corolla and honestly, it's getting to the point where I know something important is going to go. [more inside]
Having idle/loss of power problems with a 1994 Nissan Sentra. Whats your diagnosis? [more inside]
Should I be responsible for auto mechanic snapping my wheel studs? [more inside]
How does a person become a mechanic, ideally, and is this line of work compatible with social anxiety? [more inside]
I just had to replace my car's entire powertrain. What could've happened? How do I prevent it from happening AGAIN? [more inside]
If oil was vodka, my '05 Pontiac Vibe would be F. Scott Fitzgerald. Should we have the engine rebuilt or replaced? Automotive snowflakiness inside! [more inside]
What factors do you consider when thinking about getting rid of your old car and buying a new one? [more inside]
Anyone know a good mechanic in or around Gurnee Illinois for a used car pre-sale checkup? [more inside]
I'm looking for a new car mechanic in Melbourne, Australia and/or tips for finding a reliable one in general... [more inside]
Should I replace the transmission or replace the car? [more inside]
Did I get ripped off by my mechanic? [more inside]
Can anyone recommend a mechanic in Vancouver, BC, preferably in the westside? [more inside]
Can you recommend a Volkswagen mechanic in Portland or Eugene, Oregon? [more inside]
My front headlight on my 99 Jeep Cherokee has just blown and I'm driving to WV tomorrow after dark. What are my chances of finding a walk-in auto repair place in Catonsville Maryland (suburban Baltimore)? [more inside]
I think my power steering fluid is leaking. What's this going to cost me? I've got a 2K Nissan Xterra. I think I overfilled it a few weeks ago and notice oil dripping a few days ago.
Are there any schools that have something like a week-long auto repair course? Preferably BMW-focused, and preferably in the DC Metro area, but even without those two, would still be useful. [more inside]
Anyone know a good BMW mechanic in the Fort Lee, NJ (Near the George Washington Bridge) area? I have a 1988 325ix and need someone trustworthy and competent to take care of it. Service at the BMW dealer is outrageously expensive. I've tried various BMW message boards and come up empty. Something in a 30 minute radius would be nice, but I'll take what you got!
Where in Northern VA should I take my '03 VW Passat to get the thermostat replaced? [more inside]
Are there any reasons why a Porsche engine could not be put into a '74 Volkwagen Beetle? [more inside]
NJFilter: Coworker living in Jersey City wants to find a reputable auto mechanic. Any JC/Hoboken resident recommendations?
Know a good Chicago auto mechanic? [more inside]
Did this mechanic try to "trick" me into a repair that costs more than the car is worth? [more inside]
Any good online references for finding an auto repair shop? Reports, reviews, horror stories? [more inside]
I have a 1991 Honda Civic DX hatchback with ~125k miles on it. It runs like a champ, except when it doesn't start.... [more inside]
Does anyone know of a good mechanic in Chicago? [more inside]
How can I figure out what's leaking from my car? (And other maladies...) Does anyone know of a site -- like WebMD, but for cars -- where I can type in symptoms and narrow down what might be wrong with a car? I know that I can go to a mechanic, but sometimes the first question is whether it's even safe to drive the car to the mechanic. [more inside]
I'm looking for schools that offer courses in Automotive Repair in the New York City area (or even better, Brooklyn), does anyone know of a comprehensive list?
AutoFilter: In a moment of terrible mental absence this morning, I drove about half a block in second gear with the hand brake engaged. While the right rear wheel smoked and the brake glowed visibly red, there seem to be no other consequences an hour after the fact. Does this merit a call to the mechanic to check it out if other malfunctions haven't arisen?