* Start shopping for a repair facility before you need one.
* Ask your friends and associates for their recommendations, and consult local consumer groups.
* Arrange for alternate transportation in advance so you will not feel forced to choose a shop based solely on location.
* Look for a neat, well-organized facility, with vehicles in the parking lot equal in value to your own and modern equipment in the service bays.
* Look for a courteous staff, with a service consultant or technicians willing to answer your questions.
* Look for policies regarding estimated repair costs, diagnostic fees, guarantees and acceptable methods of payment.
* Ask if the repair facility specializes or if it usually handles your type of repair work.
* Look for signs of professionalism in the customer service area such as civic, community, or customer service awards.
* Look for evidence of qualified technicians: trade school diplomas, certificates of advanced course work, and certification by ASE indicate the presence of professional, trained technicians.
* Look for the ASE sign. ASE was founded in 1972 to improve the quality of automotive service and repair through the voluntary testing and certification of automotive professionals. ASE-certified technicians wear blue and white ASE shoulder insignia and carry credentials listing their exact area(s) of certification, while their employers display the blue and white ASE sign.
* Be ready to describe any changes in your vehicle's handling or performance or other issues. Do not be embarrassed to ask for simple definitions for any technical terms you find unfamiliar.
* Reward good service with repeat business and customer loyalty.
Visit www.ase.com for more information, including seasonal car-care tips.