Auto Repair Ethics in BirminghamJul 17th, 2017
We're going to be talking about the ethics of automotive repair. Unfortunately, every profession has some bad actors that hurt the reputation of everyone else. In the automotive world, including our local Hoover automotive community, industry associations, professional licensing organizations and Car Care Inc. are very committed to high ethical standards.
Yet some Birmingham drivers are uncomfortable with automotive service and repair. If we understand what's recommended and the benefits of taking care of the work – and the pitfalls of putting it off – we'll have more trust in the recommendation. So communication is key. It's like going to your Birmingham doctor. If she's using medical jargon and takes a lot of basic medical knowledge for granted, we have a hard time following her train of thought. It can be like that with your Birmingham service advisor, too. He's so familiar with all things automotive, he may forget you don't know a PCV from an EGT.
If you don't understand what your doctor's talking about: ask some questions. If you don't understand what your Hoover automotive advisor's talking about: ask some questions.
Let's go back to those ethical standards. When we hear a repair recommendation, we always ask ourselves, “Is this really necessary?” Well, here's the industry standard:
If your Birmingham service advisor tells you that a repair or replacement is required, it must meet one of the following criteria:
(1) The part no longer performs its intended purpose
(2) The part does not meet a design specification
(3) The part is missing
For example, it you take your vehicle in for a grinding noise when you step on the brakes, you may just think you need new brake pads. After the inspection, the technician says that you have a cracked rotor and need to replace it. If you tried to get him to just put new pads on, he would say that if you didn't want to replace the rotor, he would ethically have to refuse the repair. To just put pads on a cracked rotor would have been very wrong. The brakes could've failed at anytime: they needed to be repaired – not just have a band-aid slapped on them. Now, looking at something not so serious, the service advisor may suggest repair or replacement:
(1) If the part is close to the end of its useful life – just above discard specifications or likely to fail soon
(2) To address a customer need or request – like for better ride or increased performance
(3) To comply with maintenance recommended by the vehicle manufacturer
(4) Based on the technician's informed experience
Of course, the technician has the burden of making ethical recommendations and properly educating their Birmingham customers. For the customer, if you are uncomfortable with a recommendation, ask some questions. More information is always a good thing for Birmingham drivers.
Give us a call.
Car Care Inc.
2048 Valleydale Terrace unit B
Birmingham, Alabama 35244
At Car Care Inc. we install quality NAPA replacement parts.