Archive for the ‘service department’ Tag

How to Communicate for Better Automotive Service

Today’s cars, light trucks, and sport-utility vehicles are high-tech marvels with digital dashboards, oxygen sensors, electronic computers, unibody construction, and more. They run better, longer, and more efficiently than models of years past.

But when it comes to repairs, some things stay the same. Whatever type of repair facility you patronize–dealership, service station, independent garage, specialty shop, or a national franchise–good communication between the customer and the shop is vital.

The following tips should help you along the way:

Do your homework before taking your vehicle in for repairs or service.

– Read the owner’s manual to learn about the vehicle’s systems and components.

– Follow the recommended service schedules.

– Keep a log of all repairs and service.

When you think about it, you know your car better than anyone else. You drive it every day and know how it feels and sounds when everything is right. So don’t ignore its warning signals.

Use all of your senses to inspect your car frequently. Check for:

– Unusual sounds, odors, drips, leaks, smoke, warning lights, gauge readings.

– Changes in acceleration, engine performance, gas mileage, fluid levels.

– Worn tires, belts, hoses.

– Problems in handling, braking, steering, vibrations.

– Note when the problem occurs.

– Is it constant or periodic?

– When the vehicle is cold or after the engine has warmed up?

– At all speeds? Only under acceleration? During braking? When shifting?

– When did the problem first start?

Professionally run repair establishments have always recognized the importance of communications in automotive repairs.
Once you you are at the repair establishment, communicate your findings.

– Be prepared to describe the symptoms. (In larger shops you’ll probably speak with a service writer/service manager rather than with the technician directly.)

– Carry a written list of the symptoms that you can give to the technician or service manager.

– Resist the temptation to suggest a specific course of repair. Just as you would with your physician, tell where it hurts and how long it’s been that way, but let the technician diagnose and recommend a remedy.

Stay involved…Ask questions.

– Ask as many questions as you need. Do not be embarrassed to request lay definitions.

– Don’t rush the service writer or technician to make an on-the-spot diagnosis. Ask to be called and apprised of the problem, course of action, and costs before work begins.

– Before you leave, be sure you understand all shop policies regarding labor rates, guarantees, and acceptable methods of payment.

– Leave a telephone number where you can be called.

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Postponed Check-ups lead to Expensive Procedures

Postponed Check-ups lead to Expensive Procedures
Preventative Care is a Key Step for Healthy Vehicles

Tough economic times might tempt vehicle owners to delay seemingly minor service and repairs. But saving a few dollars today can be very costly in the long run.

“Sometimes a customer is skeptical about the urgency of a recommended repair.” Explained Jim Grove, Service Director at Dick Scott Dodge. “Yet, several affordable services are key to maintaining vehicle safety, efficiency and performance while preventing costly repairs down the road.”

Service advisors at Dick Scott Dodge in Plymouth cite a recent report by U.S. News and World Report “6 Car Repairs You Can’t Afford to Skip” as an important list for helping vehicle owners prioritize the maintenance needs of their vehicles.

The magazine identifies worn brake pads, oil changes, air filters, transmission fluid leaks, burned out lights and clogged fuel filters as the six important vehicle car items that should not be postponed.

For example, replacing a dirty air filter can cost as little as $15.00. But if a dirty air filter prevents the engine from getting enough air, spark plugs can fail. Replacing the spark plugs is a significantly more expensive repair costing up to $300, depending on the engine.

During a routine inspection, the service department at Dick Scott Dodge will check to see if the vehicle needs any factory-recommended service actions. Often, these services and repairs are performed at no cost.

Another free service for Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Car and Ram Trucks vehicles is computer software updates. Using Chrysler Group LLC’s unique wiTECH tool, service technicians can identify any software updates available and make revisions within minutes. Modern vehicles contain sophisticated computer programs that benefit from occasional updates, similar to personal computers, to keep vehicle and features operating their best.

“In addition to having your vehicle inspected by a factory-trained service technician, there are several simple steps owners can take to prepare their vehicle for fall and winter,” said Grove.

– Check tire pressure: Tire pressure can fluctuate with temperature changes. If the vehicle is not equipped with a tire-pressure monitoring system, check on or near the driver’s-side door for the correct pressure. Properly inflated tires can improve fuel economy by 3.3 percent.
– Inspect wiper blades: Streaking, limited visibility, blade tearing or noisy wiper blade operations are the telltale signs that wipers need replacing.
– Prepare for snow removal: Put snow scrapers and brushes in the vehicle before the first snow of the season.
– Pack an emergency kit: Drivers can prepare their own or purchase a safety kit from Mopar that includes a safety flashlight, fleece blanket, six-gage jumper cables, safety triangle, screwdrivers, pliers, two bungee cords and gloves.

“Drivers should always check their owner’s manual for complete information on service and maintenance schedules,” Grove added.

About Dick Scott Dodge
Dick Scott Dodge is an authorized new vehicle dealer affiliated with Chrysler Group LLC and sells new Dodge Car and Ram Truck vehicles; they also have a large selection of Pre-owned vehicles available in all makes and models. Chrysler Group LLC was formed in 2009 from a global strategic alliance with Fiat Group and produces Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge Car, Ram Truck, Mopar and Global Electric Motors (GEM) brand vehicles and products. Dick Scott Dodge provides service for all Chrysler, Jeep & Dodge Vehicles, as well as ALL other makes & models.