Questions to Ask Auto Repair Shops in Arapahoe County CO
When hiring auto repair shops for car repairs in Arapahoe County CO, ask questions about their abilities, experience, and credentials.
Updated June 20, 2017
Questions to Ask Auto Repair Shops in Arapahoe County CO
Step 1: How To Describe Your Need
First, know the make, model and engine type of your car. Your owners' manual will have all of this information. Be consistent in the way you explain the information to each shop so that each one will have an opportunity to diagnose the same job. If you are experiencing car problems, make sure you have a good idea of what the symptoms are and when they occur (e.g. vibration when idling, metallic noise when in gear, difficulty tracking at highway speeds, etc.). Some might suggest they need to see the car first before saying anything, but if your description is specific enough, good mechanics can make an educated guess about the problem and the car repairs that might be needed.
Step 2: Ask & Answer
Take note of what questions the auto mechanics have about your car's problem. How detailed are the questions? Do they exhibit a firm grasp of the details of your problem or just seem to want to get you in and out? If possible, speak with the owner or most senior auto mechanic at the car repair shop. Ask these questions about the abilities, experience, and credentials and write down their answers: • How long have they been in business?
• How long have they been in business? (All auto repair shops in Arapahoe County CO bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had sufficient time in business verified by our research staff so you don't have to.)
• Do they charge inspection fees or diagnostic charges to assess car repair problems?
• Will they give you names and numbers of customers you can call as references? (All auto repair shops in Arapahoe County CO bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had their customer references called by our research staff so you don't have to.)
• How do they determine pricing? Do they charge a flat fee or base the price on hours worked?
• Will the put the initial estimate in writing?
• How often do they do repairs on your exact car make and model?
• Do they have OE diagnostic equipment specific to your make and model? An OBDII scanner is a generic low-cost scanner that will not return all the possible trouble codes. A make/model specific scanner, also referred to as an OE scanner (Original Equipment), is made specifically for a certain make of car and is pricier to buy, so not every shop will have it.
• Will they provide you with written documentation prior to you undertaking the repairs? Written documentation is their assessment of what work is required and it's protection for you. In case they're wrong about what the problem was, you might be able to get a refund or the necessary additional repair at no cost. A verbal recommendation on what they think you should do does not provide the same protection for you. Get it in writing.
• Have they had other instances of this type of car needing the exact service you're asking about?
• Do they specialize in the car repairs you've described?
• Do they use OEM parts (original equipment manufacturer) or instead, lower quality aftermarket parts, used auto parts or salvage auto parts? Those lower quality options might be cheaper, but a good shop should only use them when they explained it to you as an option and let you weigh the risk versus the short term cost savings. The best shops use OEM parts and cheap auto repair shops will use the low-quality substitutes without your knowledge, which is how the shop appears cheaper when it really isn't.
• Do they have garagekeeper's liability insurance to protect you in the event of damage to your car while it's in their possession or as a result of the repair work? (All car repair shops in Arapahoe County CO bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had proof of insurance verified by our research staff so you don't have to.)
• Will the work performed by the shop affect your manufacturer's warranty?
• Will they honor your car warranty?
• What kind of warranty do they give on their car repairs?
• How long should it take to complete your car repairs?
• Do they provide a loaner car while they are repairing yours?
• What action would the auto mechanic take personally if this was his car?
When you've chosen the best car repair shop in Arapahoe County CO for your needs, make sure they have a good complaint record. (All auto repair shops in Arapahoe County CO bearing the Prime Buyer's Report-TOP 10 symbol have already had a good complaint record verified by our research staff so you don't have to.)
Research on Car Repair in Arapahoe County CO
Common Auto Repair Terms and Definitions
Active suspensions / active suspension systems - Also called a computer-controlled suspension system. A computerized vehicle system able to control body roll, body pitch, brake dive, acceleration squat and ride height. Suspension systems are controlled by double-acting hydraulic cylinders or solenoids (actuators) mounted at each wheel. Actuators support the vehicle's weight, instead of conventional springs or air springs.
Axle / Front axle / Rear axle - A cross member supporting a vehicle on which one or more wheels are mounted. Can also refer to a pair of wheels on a vehicle.
British Car Repair Shops - Are those that specialize in British car repairs for popular models such as Jaguar and Mini Cooper repair services, and also luxury british cars with Bentley and Rolls Royce repair services. Sporty models like like MG, MGB, and the Triumph are no longer in production but British car repair specialists in Arapahoe County CO are more familiar with car repairs on these British car models than average car repair shops. The same is true for Austin Healey and Aston Martin repairs in Arapahoe County CO.
Check Engine Light - A warning light, usually located on the instrument cluster. When lit, it indicates possible engine problems or system problems that require engine repair or other auto repair services.
Cylinder - The round holes inside an engine block that make space for the pistons.
Cylinder Block - The basic framework of an engine. All other parts and assemblies are installed or attached to the cylinder block.
Cylinder Head - The part of the engine that covers cylinders and pistons.
Detroit Diesel Two-Stroke Engines - A type of engine where air enters the cylinder through cylinder liner ports
Diesel Engine - A compression-ignition engine that runs on diesel fuel. Many popular German auto brands are known for their diesel engines, such as Mercedes Benz and BMW (Bavarian Motor Works). The popularity of diesel engines for German cars and European cars generally has several reasons. A diesel engine is cheaper to run than a gasoline engine, since diesel fuel is less expensive. Next, diesel fuel has 20% more energy per gallon than gas, and almost double that of ethanol. Diesel engine repair shops in Arapahoe County including Mercedes & BMW repair shops in Arapahoe County CO will repair diesel cars, but may also repair diesel trucks and buses, bulldozers, tractors and other large vehicles.
Engine - The device within cars and trucks that burns fuel to produce mechanical power. It converts heat energy into mechanical energy.
Engine Overhaul - To perform engine repairs on an auto that are more than simple repairs but not as extensive as an engine rebuild.
Engine Rebuild - To perform an extensive engine repair including machining, reboring, and honing to factory-stock specifications. This is a much more extensive process than an engine overhaul.
Flooding the Engine - When too much gasoline is metered into an engine for combustion.
Front Suspension - The system that supports the weight of the front of the vehicle. Most cars have an independent front suspension.
Front-Wheel Drive - A drive system that transmits power from the engine through the front wheels. The rear wheels do not power the vehicle.
Gasoline Engine - An engine that runs on gasoline, a liquid blend of hydrocarbons used as automotive fuel and processed from crude oil.
German Car Repair Shops - German auto repair shops in Arapahoe County CO are those that specialize in repairs of German cars such that they have special expertise in repairs for BMW, Mercedes Benz, Audi, Porsche, BMW Mini and others. Being an expert in German car repair often means expertise in diesel car repair services, as well as the greater precision that is often required of German car brands known for being high performance cars. Since the best German auto repair usually means greater experience or even foreign factory training, hourly labor rates for German auto repair are understandably often a little higher than for domestic car repairs. Since parts usually come from Germany, often made with greater precision, part costs can be a little higher too.
Hot Rod Repair Shops - Car repair shops that specialize in hot rod repair in Arapahoe County CO are servicing typically American cars with big engines modified for high speed. These are often older models like Ford, Mercury, Chevy models from the 1920's to 1960's. These can include heavily modified hot rod models like the Ford Model T, Ford Model A, Ford Coupe, Chevy Master Deluxe, Hudson Hornet but also more modern and foreign makes like Volkswagen Beetles or Fiat. Hot rod repair shops in Arapahoe County are familiar with highly modified, large, high performance engines.
Italian Auto Repair Shops - These are Italian car repair services Arapahoe County CO that specialize in Italian cars like Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Lamborghini, Maserati, Lancia, Fiat, Bugatti, DeTomaso, and others.
Muscle Cars / Muscle Car Repair Shops - American made rear wheel drive cars of the late 1960's to mid 1970's that were 'small' cars (compared to their engines) which came with large powerful V8 engines and sold as everyday cars for regular street use. Common examples still being serviced by muscle car specialists in Arapahoe County are the Plymouth Road Runner, Pontiac GTO, Chevy Chevelle, Dodge Charger, Ford Gran Torino, Oldsmobile 442, Mercury Montego, AMC AMX, Plymouth GTX, AMC Rebel, Chevy Nova, Chevy Malibu, Dodge Demon, Ford Cobra, Plymouth Duster, Oldsmobile Cutlass. These muscle cars were mass-marketed, but the automakers understood that they would attract customers interested in what was essentially a turn-key racing machine. Although sales were modest, they were considered prestige cars for the automakers. Muscle car repair shops in Arapahoe County CO will be very familiar repairing & restoring the Hemi engines and other large V8 engines found in American muscle cars. A sub-set of the muscle cars are known as "pony cars" and include smaller-sized large-engine cars like the Ford Mustang, Chevy Camaro and Plymouth Barracuda. There are muscle car repair experts in Arapahoe County CO who specialize in Ford Mustang repair, and repair of other pony cars.
Radiator - A heat exchanger that removes heat from the cooling system coolant, containing a vertical-finned or horizontal-finned tubing section connected between two tanks.
Rear-Wheel Drive - Autos powered by the engine through the rear wheels
Turbo Charger Repair (Turbocharger Repair) - A turbochargers purpose is to boost horsepower. A turbo charger should last as long as the engine but it's possible for debris to get into the turbine or compressor. Turbo charger repairs may also be needed if the lubricant is dirty or too low, or if the exhaust gas temperatures from the injection system are too high. There are some turbocharger repair shops and turbo charger repair experts in Arapahoe County who can perform a turbo charger inspection. If turbo charger repair services in Arapahoe County CO cannot repair the turbo, then they can install a new or refurbished turbocharger. While you might attempt turbocharger repairs yourself, you're best off finding an expert in turbo charger repair in Arapahoe County CO.
Winding the Engine - Running the engine at top RPM (Revolutions Per Minute).
Resources About Auto Repair in Arapahoe County CO
Licensing & Trade Associations Related to Car Repair in Arapahoe County CO
AAA Colorado www.colorado.aaa.com
AAAM Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine www.carcrash.org
AAIA Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association www.aftermarket.org
AASP Alliance Of Automotive Service Providers www.autoserviceproviders.com
AASP-MO Alliance of Automotive Service Providers of Colorado www.aasp-co.org
ACA Automotive Composites Alliance www.autocomposites.org
ADS Association of Diesel Specialists www.diesel.org
AERA Engine Builders Association www.aera.org
AIAG Automotive Industry Action Group www.aiag.org
ASA Automotive Service Association www.asashop.org
Automotive Service Association - Colorado www.asacolorado.org
ASE National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence www.asecert.org
BBB The Better Business Bureau www.bbb.com
COEVTA Colorado Emergency Vehicle Technicians Association www.coevta.org
Colorado Attorney General www.stopfraudcolorado.gov
NARSA National Automotive Radiator Service Association www.narsa.org
NATEF National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation www.natef.org
SAE Society of Automotive Engineers automobile.sae.org
SEMA Specialty Equipment Market Association www.sema.org
Magazines/Media Related to Auto Repair in Arapahoe County CO
Car and Driver
Road & Track
Sport Compact Car
Turbo And High Performance Magazine
Turbo And High Tech Performance
US Auto News
The Prime Buyer's Report provides information for the TOP 10 Auto Repair in Arapahoe County CO within the following zip codes:
80246-2, 80112, 80017, 80163-2, 80124, 80044, 80010, 80137, 80111, 80016, 80162, 80123-2, 80042, 80136-2, 80110, 80015, 80161, 80122, 80041, 80128, 80105, 80014, 80160, 80121, 80040, 80127, 80103, 80013, 80155, 80120, 80019, 80126, 80046, 80012, 80151, 80113, 80018, 80125, 80045, 80011 and 80150
The Prime Buyer's Report provides information for the TOP 10 Car Repair in Arapahoe County CO within the following cities:
Aetna Estates, Aurora, Bow Mar, Byers, Centennial, Cherry Creek, Cherry Hills Village, Columbine Valley, Dove Valley, Englewood, Foxfield, Glendale, Greenwood Village, Holly Hills, Inverness, Littleton, Sheridan, Strasburg, Watkins, Castlewood and Southglenn