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Drop off a car to get a repair estimate to a shop? Is that normal?

Is it normal for a car repair shop to ask a customer to drop off a car to get an estimate of repairs? They told me once I drop it off, they will call me at that same day for an estimate. I’m kind of worried about that. Please help. My car needs some engine work done.
I’m also worried that they might do bad things to the car so they can charge more while I’m away.

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8 Responses to “Drop off a car to get a repair estimate to a shop? Is that normal?”

  1. dadw5boys said:

    Yes it is normal. Don’t try and tell them what is wrong because they will fix what you said is wrong and the other problems will still be there.
    Let them tell you what is wrong and needs to be repaired. then they are responsible repairing the problem.

  2. Cosmic said:

    Yea,they need to see what it’s going to need done and roughly how long it will take to do,before they can give you an estimate.Don’t worry,it’s normal.

  3. dodgedart said:

    This is not normal, the repair shop will in all likelyhood dissasemble your engine and leave it in pieces for you. They will hold your car hostage till you pay them for the estimate and the repair.

  4. Richard B said:

    Sounds like a busy shop that doesn’t want to hurry thru a diagnosis with a customer waiting . If you want a good job done on your can let them have it for at least a day.Engine work needs to be diagnosed cold and hot.Good luck.

  5. John St.Louis said:

    tough situation.. of course you don’t want guesswork estimates based on your verbal symptoms but at the same time you don’t want the thing torn apart and leave you stranded. you MUST first agree to diagnosis charges and based on the report go foward

  6. jeff b said:

    Nicky H, I have been an auto repair technician for over 15 years and NO technician can diagnose a car over the phone. In the state I work in ( Florida ) it is a law that you have to sign a repair order that authorizes the shop to spend any money. It is most likely the same in all states. If you do not authorize them to spend any money they cannot legally charge you any money even if “they go ahead and tear it down”. Tearing it down without authorization is an unscrupulous sales technique. You can shop for a good repair shop by looking for credentials such as ASE certifications, you should also contact the Better Business Bureau to research potential shops. One thing I can guarentee you is that the cost of doing it the right way once is ALWAYS cheaper than doing it twice. Ultimately if the service writer is not willing to clearly explain your repair options and thouroughly discuss why you need each and every item to repair it correctly AND give you a complete WRITTEN estimate then I’d think twice about letting them do the repair work. Good luck and remember as the consumer you have the choice of where you want to take your vehicle.

  7. cheri h said:

    this is normal procedure, they are busy and need to have the car there to investigate and thoroughly check things out

  8. levi10002000 said:

    where i live that is very common.




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