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Auto mechanics of Reddit. How can I be sure you’re not ripping me off?(r/AskReddit)
Find a local independent mechanic. Do not go to a quick lube chain. They are NOT mechanics, they’re monkeys trained to “upsell” overpriced shit your car does not need. Especially avoid the DEALER.
Search for a locally owned garage, meet the owner. You want the person(s) working on your car to take pride in their work. Not some grease monkey kid who gets paid shit.
It also helps to know your way around your car. Pick up a code reader for when the check engine light comes on. www.amazon.com/Autel-MaxiScan-MS300-Diagnostic-Veh…
>I had a check engine light on my Toyota Camry 2001. I did a little research and found out that a computer scanner called an OBD II can be used as a diagnostic tool for most cars on the road today (1996 and newer with some exceptions). I decided to buy this affordable scanner rather than pay a mechanic $70 to $100 (plus sales tax, shop fees, and all their other nickle and dime fees) to read the code. When I got the Autel MaxiScan delivered, I read the instructions a couple of times. Then, I went out to the car and looked for the place to plug it in, which was right under the steering wheel. I plugged it in, turned the ignition key half way, pressed a few buttons on the scanner, and presto! It read P0401, which means egr flow insufficient. As it turns out, that is a common problem with 2001 Toyota Camrys. I cleared the engine light with the scanner, and unfortunately the engine light came back about 125 miles later. The P0401 code also came back. I still have to resolve the problem, but at least I am not at the mercy of a mechanical telling me what is wrong with my car, or charging me a nice chunk of change for that information. If you get a check engine light on your car, I recommend you get this scanner and read the code before you go to an auto mechanic.