As a result of the tough economic times we are going through today many Americans are choosing to hold on to their cars longer…much longer than they ever have before. The average age of the American car jumped from 10.2 years in 2007 to 12.6 years in 2010. In fact, over 70% of the vehicles on the road today are no longer covered by the manufacturer warranty. This means that cost of auto repair and service come directly out of your pocket.
This is where taking your car to an Independent Repair Shop instead of the Dealership pays off in 3 big ways”
The most noticeable advantage that independent repair shops have is in the price you pay for the repair. While dealerships give out coupons and spend lots of money advertising their service department, a survey by CarTalk revealed that Independent repair shops charge 15% less for auto repairs than dealers do. This means that you would save $30 off the average repair bill of $200. It’s nice to have a little extra money in your pocket, but price isn’t the only advantage independent repair shops offer.
When it comes to customer service independent repair shops beat dealerships in this area as well. According to Consumer Reports, customers were significantly happier with the service they received from the independent repair shop. This isn’t surprising when you consider the fact that independent repair shops are focused entirely on keeping your car running. Additionally, many of these repair shops are locally operated so a bad reputation in the local area could quickly cost them their business and their personal standing in the community.
The independent repair shops relationship with the community is another great reason to take your car there if you want the money you spend to stay local. With over 90% of auto repair shops being family owned and operated more of your money will go back into the local economy. These small businesses usually employ a handful of local mechanics and office staff. Also, they spend a significant amount of time and money supporting civic organizations that benefit the local community.
So, the next time your car is in need of auto repair check out your local independent repair shop. Not only do they offer the best prices and customer service, but you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that more of your money is being invested in the local community.