Is your bumper falling off, do you drive around with a gallon of water in your trunk in case your car overheats? For whatever reason, many of us have been in the situation of having a car that should probably make its next and final stop at the junkyard.

If you are thinking the time may be approaching to trade in your old clunker for a more reliable car, check out these signs it’s time to start looking. Perhaps you need a no credit check auto loan fast!

  1. Your dog won’t even get into the car.
  2. Your significant other suggests the bus might be a better option than driving your car.
  3. You leave your keys in the ignition and the doors unlocked in hopes it will get stolen.
  4. You wake up to find your car is missing, after excitedly calling the police to report it stolen, they inform you it was accidentally towed as it was mistaken for an abandoned car.
  5. When someone is following you in their own vehicle, there is absolutely no chance they’ll lose you because of the trail of oil and transmission fluid leaking onto the road.
  6. You spend more each week on oil, radiator stop leak and high-mileage engine additives than you do on gas.
  7. You try to talk anyone else into driving whenever possible to avoid being seen in your own car.
  8. You don’t have to worry about getting caught throwing trash out the window because you can drop in straight through the floorboards onto the road.
  9. You pull over to offer a ride to a hitchhiker and he turns you down, saying he will just wait for someone else.

If any of these signs describe you and your car, it is probably time to go car shopping.

Finding the Best Mechanic: Don’t Get Ripped Off!

When your personal vehicle breaks down, trying to get it fixed can be a harrowing experience.  Without a consistent way to get to work, many people feel forced into accepting the closest mechanic to their homes, often without shopping around to get a good idea for rates.  The auto repair industry is filled with scam artists and con men, and there is no better way to lose a fortune in hard earned money than by going to a less-than-honest mechanic.  These tips from Complete Auto Loans will help you find an honest mechanic that can fix your car at a fair rate.

Learn the Lingo: Do your Research

After something happens to your car, the first thing that you should do is some good old-fashioned research.  You don’t need to be a car wizard to find out a few possible causes for your car’s trouble – a quick Google of the symptoms will turn up dozens of possibilities in forums and car websites.  Don’t feel like you have to get to the bottom of your car’s malady (that’s the mechanic’s job) but learn some of the possible malfunctions and get a rough idea what it takes to fix them.  An uninformed customer is a mechanic’s dream because they can use fear to sell all types of unnecessary services.

Shop Around

Cars differ in complexity and price, and so it can be impossible to get a firm price from mechanics without bringing your car in for service.  Nevertheless, you should be able to get an oral estimate from most mechanics based on the problems that you discovered in the aforementioned research, and this should give you a rough idea of the gradient of mechanic prices out there.

Read Customer Reviews

Google reviews, Yelp, and Angie’s list are invaluable at finding out if particular mechanics are known for their good (or not-so-good) service.  Just remember – only a small minority of customers take to the internet to post about their experiences, usually, customers who are extremely angry or extremely happy, so it is difficult to find average reviews.

Get a Price in Writing

Once you have selected a reputable mechanic and you have taken your car in, do not leave the mechanic’s office without an estimate in writing.  You want a document that states the expected charges and explicitly instructs the mechanic to contact you if anything changes that might necessitate a change to the estimate terms.  If the mechanic tries to add on a bunch of fees after the work has started (fees that are not tied to real problems that are uncovered) you can always have another mechanic complete the work.  Don’t let your mechanic hold your car hostage for ever-increasing amounts of money.