It is sometimes hard to see the light when your automobile breaks down. No one wants to face car repairs, whether you are handy enough to do them on your own or have to get someone to do them for you. It all costs money, and you need to keep reading to learn how you can better handle auto repairs.

When you top off your motor oil, avoid spilling oil on your engine by wadding up a couple of paper towels around the oil receptacle on the crank-case. This will absorb drips and spills. Be sure to dispose of your empty oil container and the paper towels responsibly when finished adding oil.

If you are worried about an auto body shop puffing up the amount of work that needs to be done, go and get free diagnostics from somewhere else. Since there is no guarantee you will get work done by them, they have no reason to claim there is more needed than necessary.

If your car door and hatch locks tend to become stiff, avoid breaking your key off in the lock by lubricating them periodically with a penetrating oil spray. You can use the plastic extender that comes with the spray can to deliver oil to the interior of the locking mechanism. If you have misplaced this extender, just spray your key liberally and turn it in the stiff lock several times.

Always ask about the certification and the insurance of a mechanic before letting them fix your car. If something goes wrong, the mechanic’s insurance will cover damages and usually provides you with a car you can drive until yours is fixed. A mechanic who is not certified does not have an insurance either.

Ask for parts that are classified as OEM parts. These are the manufacturer’s original parts. Although using generic parts may provide some short-term savings, it’s impossible to know whether or not they’ll hold up as well as OEM parts. Getting a good deal on generic parts means you might have to purchase the same parts again and pay a mechanic to change them within the next few years.

Find a reputable auto repair shop in your area and take your car there every time it needs service. You should attempt to have the same mechanic work on your car when you take it there. This helps the mechanic to become familiar with your vehicle so he will notice problems sooner than someone else.

Although the dealer for your car’s make may provide the highest expertise when it comes to repair service, it may not always be the most cost effective choice. Many independent car repair shops have technicians that formerly worked at dealerships and are factory trained. You may be able to save a good amount by choosing an independent shop over the dealer, without a loss of quality.

When it is time to bring your car in for work, think carefully about whether you want to go to the dealer or a local repairman. The dealer often knows the most about your particular type of vehicle, but they generally cost the most as a result. Weigh your options and go with what is right for you.

Remember, you are owed an estimate before any work occurs on your car. If you did not receive an estimate and work did begin, do not feel obligated to move forward with any sort of payment. Move onto a more reputable auto shop as soon as possible if this occurs.

Do you feel like you can make a better decision now next time your car is in need? If you have been duped in the past, then you are going to be more cautious and choose wisely. You know based on what you’ve read that you can take care of things right this next time.