Top 5 Auto Mechanic Pet Peeves

Automotive service advisor

Auto mechanics definitely don’t have monotonous jobs. On any given day, they might find themselves painting vehicles, repairing transmissions or brake systems, or even completely replacing a truck’s engine. A mechanic might spend an afternoon welding or hammering the dents out of a car door or examining a vehicle’s undercarriage while it’s up on a lift.

Cars and trucks arrive in a variety of conditions, dropped-off by customers who usually want things fixed in a hurry no matter what the circumstances. Trying to juggle a number of mechanic tasks while also trying to keep customers happy can sometimes make life in the garage a little hectic. Here’s a look at what many mechanics report to be some of their biggest pet peeves while on the job.

Auto Mechanic Pet Peeve #1: An Empty Fuel Tank

It appears that some people, when driving to the mechanic with their car running on fumes figure: “why fill up?”

Students enrolling in an auto mechanic course may know that in the garage, mechanics will have to let the car idle when doing repairs, or take it for a test drive to ensure it is smooth-running. The pros suggest that customers drop their vehicles off with about a quarter tank of gas. It’s highly unlikely that mechanics will use that much gas when repairing a car, but it’s a solid rule of thumb.

Auto Mechanic Pet Peeve #2: Ignoring Safety Issues

Over the span of their career, an automotive service advisor will see some pretty beat up cars come into the shop, but it can be even more upsetting when customers neglect serious safety issues altogether. For example, mechanics may see a minivan used to drop kids off at school with brakes that are seriously worn and on the brink of being ineffective.

Customers are encouraged to make regular check-up appointments with their dealership or local mechanic, but sometimes it may be a matter of finances that delay things. This is understandable, but when neglected repairs pose a major safety hazard, car owners may be better-off using public transit for the time being.

Auto Mechanic Pet Peeve #3: Friends Who Expect Free Service

While mechanics might not mind helping a close friend out with a repair once in a while, some people will expect too much. Auto repair can be grueling work and mechanics appreciate their off time. Think of it this way: if someone works as a waiter, that doesn’t automatically mean they are expected to serve and clear the table at your next dinner party. But, they might just offer to help out – if they feel like it!

Auto Mechanic Pet Peeve #4: Fixing Another Mechanic’s Mistakes

Most mechanics went through mechanic colleges that taught them the best practices for repairing automotive issues. This, however, isn’t always the case. Some garages are family run and their workers may have been brought up in and around automobiles, but don’t possess the know-how to thoroughly service a car.

Sometimes, mechanics are forced to undo a previous mechanic’s shoddy work. What’s worse is that the customer may have had to repair the same issue twice. When a customer comes into the shop with this problem, explaining what went wrong the first time and doing the job right just might gain you a loyal customer.

Auto Mechanic Pet Peeve #5: The Customer Diagnosis

Sometimes, the customer service aspect of working as an auto mechanic can be tough – especially when the customer shows up and explains to you exactly what the problem with their car is. Sometimes, they’re right, but it is definitely the mechanic’s job to diagnose the issue and move forward accordingly.

If a customer swears it’s an exhaust issue and you change out their exhaust system only to find out the issue was something completely different, it’s a lose-lose for everyone.

As an auto mechanic in training, what’s your worst pet peeve?

Categories: ATC News, Cambridge
Tags: Auto Mechanic Course, Automotive service advisor, Mechanic colleges

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