No one likes a logistic problem or has to wait for too long for the issue to be sorted. Consumers often ask themselves: “What can I do if mechanic takes too long?” Mechanics can be lifesavers when cars become problematic, but they can also cause car owners unnecessary stress and frustration. This is especially true when they take too long to fix car issues.
Apart from the severity of your car problem, you should also note your mechanic’s previous behavior. Is this the first time fixing your car is taking too long? If the answer is yes, then you might want to give your mechanic a little more time. If the answer is no, maybe it is time to take the appropriate action.
Here are some actions you can take if the mechanic takes too long to conduct your repairs.
Find Out the Exact Problem
When the mechanic takes too long, you should try to determine the exact cause of the delay. For instance, the problem with your car may require getting spare parts that are not readily available. In that case, the car repair will take longer than initially communicated. Always try to clearly communicate with your mechanic about deadlines. You can make reasonable demands and negotiate a convenient deadline for both of you.
File a Formal Complaint
If you negotiated a deadline that you and your mechanic agreed on, but your car still is not ready on time, it may be time to file a formal complaint. A reputable garage will have a process for consumers to file their complaints. Take advantage of the process. They are familiar with the Consumer Protection Act as well. Therefore when you make a formal complaint, you might get a discount on the repair costs. If the result is still the same, you can contact your State Consumer Protection Office or the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
Get a Backup Car
While waiting for your car or the issue to be resolved, you can get a backup car if you can afford it. You do not need to buy a new one and can just use a rental for the time being. Otherwise, you can arrange with someone who has a car to give you a lift if they are heading in your direction. The purpose of a backup vehicle is to ensure that your car problem does not disrupt your everyday routine too much.
Change Your Mechanic
If the issue is ongoing with no positive results, maybe it is time to change your mechanic. You can have a reputable mechanic pick up your car from the previous garage. You need to be firm in this decision, even if it is difficult, especially if you have been with the mechanic for a while. It is not worth the trouble to stay with the same company if they take forever to fix your car and fail to deliver on their promises. A reputable mechanic should value their loyal customers and take care of repairs quickly and efficiently.
Can I Sue My Mechanic for Taking Too Long?
You cannot sue your mechanic for taking too long to fix your car. If there is a conflict about the delivery time, you should talk to your state’s consumer protection office. You can also contact the DMV. However, if you wish to go the legal route, you can file a suit in a small claims court or civil court.
Remember, you can only lodge a complaint if the garage or your mechanic is certified. Therefore only companies that have a government license.
Usually, you don’t need an attorney at a small claim court. However, it is worth hiring a personal injury lawyer if you can afford it or have suffered unnecessary expenses due to the delay in fixing your car. It will help your case and ensure you are compensated appropriately.
Moreover, the most common reason people sue their mechanic is negligence that resulted in an accident or injury to the car or owner. In that case, an accident lawyer can prepare the lawsuit and take it to court.
Apart from that, there are several cases where you can sue your mechanic. Such circumstances include fraud, negligence, bad repairs, violation of warranty, incorrect repair cost, or estimates. If you suspect any of them, you can hire a personal injury lawyer to represent you.
How Long Should a Mechanic Take To Fix a Car?
There is no specific timeframe for how long it takes to fix a car since the timeframe will depend on what’s wrong with the car. Some problems are easier and quick to fix than others. Some of the factors that will determine the timeframe for fixing your car include warning lights, dead batteries, flat tires, etc. These repairs can take anything from a few minutes to a few hours.
If you take your car to a mechanic for simple fixes like that, it should be done within a day maximum. However, more significant problems like clutch, engine replacement, transmission, etc., can take days or even weeks to complete.
Additionally, if you brought your car to the garage yourself, there might be some paperwork to complete before the mechanic gets started. However, a towed car or a car that has been in an accident may require more paperwork. Regardless of the severity of the damages, this might cause a delay.
Also Know: How Much to Fix a Vacuum Leak on My Car?
Why Do Car Mechanics Take So Long?
Mechanics can take a long time to repair cars for numerous reasons, and here are some of the commonplace reasons:
- Workload: If you want to get your car quickly from the garage, you should ask about your mechanic’s workload. A mechanic with an auto repair shop filled with cars waiting for repairs will likely not have it ready within a day or two. Although they are likely to tell you that having many vehicles to fix will not cause unnecessary delays, it is up to you to decide if you want to take the risk.
- Unexpected complications: Sometimes, there are unforeseen complications when repairing a car. For instance, an old car may have rusted bolts and nuts that the mechanic did not include in the initial diagnosis of your vehicle. This means the mechanic has to check and replace rusted nuts and parts of your car before doing the quoted repairs. Undoubtedly, this can result in the repair taking longer than expected.
- Spares availability: sometimes, the spare parts needed for repairs are not in stock, and they need to order the necessary components. Due to availability or shipment, the arrival of these spare parts may affect the duration.
- Unofficial Reasons: the mechanic might face personal issues that prevent him from fixing the car on time. He may be having a family emergency, health issues, death in the family, or some other reason. It could be the reason that prevents him from meeting the deadline.
Cars come in handy, but they can break down or need repairs just like everything else. Ensuring your vehicle is roadworthy and servicing is up to date is your job as a car owner. Frequent servicing and repairs mean you and your passengers remain safe.
The most important rule to follow when giving a mechanic a job is to be sure that they are certified. Always use a reputable company that has a good reputation with excellent service.
If the mechanic takes too long to fix your car, you should talk to them to determine the severity of the problem. This way you can ascertain whether the delay is reasonable. Now that you have the answer to the question: What can I do if mechanic takes too long?”, you can decide the best way forward.