Diamond Certified Companies are Rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise.

  • Why this rating is the most accurate.
  • Our editors gather deep company info.
  • Performance is Guaranteed.

Diamond certified companies are top rated and guaranteed

Why Trust Diamond Certified Auto Repair Shops Rated Highest in Quality?

Vehicles on lifts being repaired in a clean, organized auto repair shop.

You are the customer. If your goal is to choose an auto repair shop that will deliver high customer satisfaction and quality, you’ll feel confident in choosing a Diamond Certified automotive repair center. Each has been rated Highest in Quality in the most accurate ratings process anywhere. And you’re always backed by the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee. Here’s why the Diamond Certified ratings and certification process will help you find a top-rated auto repair service and is unparalleled in its accuracy, rigor and usefulness:

1) Accuracy: All research is performed by live telephone interviews that verify only real customers are surveyed, so you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews.

2) Statistical Reliability: A large random sample of past customers is surveyed on an ongoing basis so the research results you see truly reflect a Diamond Certified company’s top-rated status.

3) Full Disclosure: By clicking the name of a company above you’ll see the exact rating results in charts and read verbatim survey responses as well as researched articles on each qualified company.

4) Guaranteed: Your purchase is backed up with mediation and the Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee, so you can choose with confidence.

Click on the name of a Diamond Certified company above to read ratings results, researched articles and verbatim customer survey responses to help you make an informed decision.

More than 200,000 customers of local companies have been interviewed in live telephone calls, and only companies that score Highest in Quality in customer satisfaction–a 90+ on a 100 scale–as well as pass all of the credential-based ratings earn Diamond Certified. By requiring such a high score to qualify, the Diamond Certified program eliminates mediocre and poorly performing companies. Read detailed information about the ratings and certification process.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTORS IN THE Monterey County – Auto Repair CATEGORY

Thuan Le is an 22-year veteran of the auto repair industry and owner of T & T Auto Repair, a Diamond Certified company. He can be reached at (831) 498-9133 or by email.

Thuan Le

diamond certified contributor profile and expert article

Thuan Le: Automotive Autonomy

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter

MONTEREY — Like many auto repair professionals, Thuan Le regards his chosen trade as a lifelong passion. “I’ve been working on cars since I was a teenager,” he says. “Everyone in my family works on cars, so it’s something I’ve always been around and naturally grew to love.” Thuan founded T & T Auto Repair in 2008, and he says that while being a business owner has its challenges, the professional autonomy it offers is well worth it. “Prior to opening my business, I’d been working for someone else since the day I finished college. After a while, I got tired of that and decided it was time to do my own thing. Now that I have my own shop, I may be working a lot more, but I’m happy to be working for myself.”

Originally from Vietnam, Thuan immigrated to the United States in 1994, where he put down roots in the Bay Area. After 20 years in Monterey, where he resides today with his wife and two children, he considers the North Bay his adopted home. “Not only is it a beautiful place with great weather, the people who live around here are very nice as well,” he says.

Outside of work, Thuan enjoys activities such as flying remote-controlled airplanes, playing basketball with his son and going to the movies with his family. Often, however, he just likes to kick back and relax. “I work six days a week, so with only one day off, I have to be sure I take some time to recuperate,” he laughs.

When asked the first thing he’d do if he could retire tomorrow, Thuan says he’d do some long-deferred traveling. “I’d probably get an RV and go see the rest of the United States. After two decades in this country, I still haven’t been anywhere—I’ve been too busy working!”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What was your first car?
A: A 1987 Honda CR-X.

Q: What’s your favorite season?
A: Summer, because I can go outside and fly my remote-controlled airplanes.

Q: If you could visit any city in the world, which would you choose?
A: I’ve always wanted to visit Paris.

Q: What’s your favorite holiday?
A: I love the whole holiday season, from Thanksgiving to New Year’s.

Q: What’s your favorite food?
A: Steak.

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Under the Hood: Getting to Know Your Vehicle

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MONTEREY — Even if you have no prior knowledge of auto maintenance, the first step to becoming acquainted with the inner workings of your vehicle is to simply lift the hood. You’ll be surprised how much you can learn by… Read more

Expert Video Tip

Video: Auto Maintenance 101

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Complete Video Transcription:

MONTEREY — Host, Sarah Rutan: When maintaining your vehicle, it’s important to be able to identify what’s under your hood. Today, we’re in Monterey with Diamond… Read more

SELECTED PHOTOS FROM THESE TOP RATED COMPANIES

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INDUSTRY INFORMATION AND RESEARCHED ARTICLES BY THE DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESOURCE

  • ACDelco

  • Unocal 76

  • Acura

  • Honda

  • Hyundai

  • Infiniti

  • Jaguar

  • Conoco/Phillips/76

  • Delphi

  • Kendall

Acura MDX
Dodge Ram Pickup
Chevrolet Camaro
Ford Focus
Chevrolet Impala
Nissan Murano
Chevrolet Equinox
Ford F-150
Ford Fiesta
Honda CR-V
Ford Mustang
GMC Sierra
Honda Accord
Honda Civic
Kia Sorento
Honda Odyssey
Toyota RAV4
Hyundai Sonata
Volkswagen Jetta
Toyota Corolla
Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Nissan Altima
BMW 3 Series
Subaru Outback
Toyota Camry
Chevy Silverado
Toyota Prius
Mazda MAZDA 3
Hyundai Elantra

foreign car repair
domestic auto repair
mobile auto repair
auto brake repair
European auto repair
carburetor service
auto engine repairs
auto tune-up
car window repair
auto radiator repair
transmission repair
air conditioner repair
car tire repair
muffler repairs
hose replacement
auto diagnostics
auto smog repairs
automobile oil change
auto ignition repairs
car problem diagnostic
mechanical auto repairs
auto electrical repair
rough idling
fuel injection repair
full engine overhauls
engine rebuilding
clutch repairs
timing problems
Japanese auto repair

Aromas
Big Sur
Bitterwater
Blanco
Bolsa Knolls
Boronda
Bradley
Bryson
Cottage Corners
Dunneville
Hollister
Camphora
Cannery Row
Carmel Highlands
Carmel Valley Village
Carmel Valley
Carmel-by-the-Sea
Castroville
Chualar
Coburn
Confederate Corners
Cooper
Del Monte
Del Monte Forest
Del Monte Heights
Del Rey Oaks
East Garrison
Elkhorn
Elsa
Fort Romie
Gabilan Acres
Gonzales
Gorda
Greenfield
Harlem
Jamesburg
Jolon
King City
Las Lomas
Lockwood
Lonoak
Lucia
Marina
Metz
Hudner
Idria
Llanada
Logan
Morse
Millers Ranch
Molus
Monterey
Moss Landing
Nacimiento
Nashua
Natividad
Neponset
New Monterey
Oak Hills
Old Hilltown
Pacific Grove
Pacific Grove Acres
Pajaro
Parkfield
Pebble Beach
Penvir
Plaskett
Pleyto
Paicines
Panoche
Pinnacles
Ridgemark
River Oaks
San Benito
San Juan Bautista
Tres Pinos
Posts
Prunedale
Robles Del Rio
Salinas
San Ardo
San Lucas
Sand City
Santa Rita
Seaside
Soledad
Spence
Spreckels
Spreckels Junction
Sycamore Flat
Tassajara Hot Springs
Valleton
Watsonville Junction
Welby
Wunpost

95023
95024
95043
95045
95045
95075
95004
93920
93426
93922
93923
93921
93924
95012
93925
93926
93927
93928
93930
93932
93933
93940
93942
93943
93944
95039
93950
93953
93901
93902
93905
93906
93907
93908
93912
93915
93450
93954
93955
93960
93962

American Automobile Association (AAA) (http://www.aaa.com/)
California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) (http://www.autorepair.ca.gov/)
California Service Station and Automotive Repair Association (CSSARA) (http://www.cssara.org/)
Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) (http://www.i-car.com/)
Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) (http://www.jama.org/)
Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine (AAAM) (http://www.carcrash.org/)
Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) (http://www.aftermarket.org/)
Alliance Of Automotive Service Providers (AASP) (http://www.autoserviceproviders.com/)
Automotive Composites Alliance (ACA) (http://www.autocomposites.org/)
Association of Diesel Specialists (ADS) (http://www.diesel.org/)
Engine Builders Association (AERA) (www.aera.org)
Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) (http://www.aiag.org/)
Automotive Recycler’s Association (ARA) (http://www.a-r-a.org/)
Automotive Service Association (ASA) (http://www.asashop.org/)
National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) (http://www.asecert.org/)
American Salvage Pool Association (ASPA) (http://www.aspa.com/)
Automotive Warehouse Distributor Association (AWDA) (http://www.awda.org/)
Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) (http://www.mema.org/)
Society for the Advancement of Autodynamics (SAA) (http://www.autodynamics.org/)
Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) (http://www.sema.org/)

 

Know What You Want
Know What You Want from Monterey County and San Benito County Auto Repair Shops

Before you start looking for an auto repair shop in Monterey County or San Benito County, it’s important to identify what you want. If you’re unsatisfied with your current auto repair facility, ask yourself what it is you are unhappy with. Knowing exactly what you’re dissatisfied with in your previous Monterey County or San Benito County auto shop will help you find a new auto repair shop that has all the qualities you’re looking for. You’ll have a better idea of what questions to ask to ensure your next shop is better than the last. You’ll also be aware of what can go wrong, so you’ll know to seek shops that offer high quality auto repairs.

If you’re having car problems and need to have your vehicle checked out by a good auto repair shop in San Benito County or Monterey County right away, it’s in your best interest to take note of exactly what you’re experiencing before you start your search. That way, you’ll be able to gauge each auto technician’s response and decide which shop is best suited to handle your vehicle repairs.

Ask yourself:

  • Do I want a Diamond Certified company that is rated best in quality and backed by the Diamond Certified Guarantee?
  • What are the exact car problems you’re experiencing? (Car shimmying, automotive rattling, unusual sounds or smells, brake squealing, car starter problems, etc.)
  • When did the problem start?
  • Is it intermittent or constant?
  • If the problem is intermittent, when does it occur? (Take note of specific road conditions, weather conditions, driving maneuvers, etc.)
  • If it’s an unusual sound, where is it coming from?
  • Has your vehicle’s performance decreased?
  • Do you have to add auto fluids more often than usual?
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What To Ask In Person
What to Ask Monterey County and San Benito County Auto Repair Mechanics In Person

Once you’ve evaluated your reasons for selecting an auto repair shop, the next step is to interview some local shops in Marina, Pacific Grove, Greenfield and other areas of Monterey County and San Benito County that are at the top of your list.

Questions you may want to ask include:

  • What are the steps you take to diagnose car problems?
  • How long will it take your auto repair center to complete my automotive repairs?
  • If my vehicle needs additional repairs you cannot do (such as warranty repairs, auto body repairs or transmission repairs / transmission replacement), will you coordinate with other Monterey area auto repair shops to have the repairs done? If so, will I be responsible to take the car to them, or will you handle moving my vehicle?
  • Will those other shops provide warranties, or will you cover their work?
  • Do you have the necessary contact information on file for me in order to reach me with auto repair updates?
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  • What To Ask References
    Learn from Auto Repair Customers in Monterey County and San Benito County, Including Those in Smaller Cities Such as Gorda, Harlem, Jamesburg, Lonoak, Ridgemark, San ardo, Valleton, Cottage Corners and Jolon

    How can you be confident that the auto repair facilities in Monterey County and San Benito County you’ve interviewed will keep their promises?

    You can take their word for it, or you can rely on independent research and scientific surveys. All Diamond Certified auto repair shops have undergone a ratings process that most other vehicle repair centers can’t pass. If you want quality from a vehicle repair shop in Monterey County and San Benito County and the greater Bay Area, you’ll have confidence when choosing Diamond Certified auto garages.

    And you’ll never be fooled by fake reviews because all research is performed by live telephone interviews of a large, random sample of real customers. So you can read Diamond Certified reports on all certified companies, including verbatim survey responses. If you can’t find a Diamond Certified car repair shop within reach, you’ll need to conduct some research of your own.

    It is a good idea to take a little time to check references, even if you’re in a hurry to get your car repaired. Good auto repair shops in Monterey County and San Benito County should be willing to give you a list of recent customers you can call as references. Keep in mind, though, that reference lists provided by the shops are not identical in value to the large random sample of customers surveyed during the Diamond Certified ratings process. That’s because the references shops give out aren’t randomly selected from all customers, so shops are likely just giving you a few satisfied customers to call. To help avoid them giving you only customers they know were satisfied, specifically ask for a list of their 10 most recent customers.

    When you call the references, ask general questions about their experience with the shop’s personnel as well as specific questions about the car repairs. Questions you might want to ask include:

    • What auto repairs did _(auto repair shop name_) do for you?
    • Were you satisfied with the car repairs from this Monterey County auto repair shop / San Benito County vehicle repair shop?
    • Did the auto repair mechanics and service writers listen to and communicate with you?
    • If you live in a smaller town such as Gabilan Acres, Fort Romie, Elkhorn, Logan, Llanada, Hudner, Metz, Sycamore Flat, Spreckels Junction or in rural South County, was your auto shop willing to tow your car or truck to their auto repair garage?
    • Was the auto repair technicians’ turn-around time fair?
    • Do you feel the price was reasonable for the auto repairs you had done?
    • What did you like best about this particular Monterey County and San Benito County automotive repair shop?
    • Would you go back to this car repair facility if your vehicle needed additional work?
    • Would you recommend this auto repair garage to others?
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  • Review Your Options
    Find a Trustworthy Auto Repair Service in Monterey County and San Benito County Including the Major Cities of Salinas, Marina, Monterey, Seaside and Soledad Before You Need Emergency Car Repairs

    The Diamond Certified symbol has been awarded to companies that scored Highest in Quality in an accurate ratings process.

    An unexpected breakdown can make you feel pressured to choose the nearest auto repair shop in Monterey County or San Benito County, even if you haven’t had time to find one you feel comfortable with. That’s why it’s a good idea to seek out an honest auto repair shop before you need one.

    Start by trying out local auto repair shops in Monterey County and San Benito County when for preventative maintenance. Get to know the car mechanics and build a working relationship with them so that you’ll know you can trust them with expensive or unexpected repairs. If possible, go to the same shop for all of your routine maintenance and repairs. That way, the auto mechanics can keep a record of your vehicle repair services, so that shop has a baseline measurement of what’s normal for your vehicle and you don’t waste money by having repairs done before they’re needed.

    The simplest way to choose a car repair facility is to review the notes you took during interviews with the auto repair shops and determine if one stands out from the rest.

    Pay attention to the following:

    • Did you talk with an auto repair shop in Monterey County / San Benito County that can satisfy your requirements for scheduling, auto repairs, part preferences, and customer service?
    • Do the car repair shop employees communicate clearly and effectively?
    • Does the auto repair shop seem devoted to getting your car back on the road as quickly and safely as possible?
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  • How To Work With
    How to Get Accurate Auto Repair Estimates From Car Repair Centers in Monterey County and San Benito County Auto Mechanics

    No one likes emergency car repairs, but having a local Monterey County or San Benito County auto repair shop you trust for regular vehicle maintenance will give you peace of mind when dealing with your mechanics.

    To get the best results, you’ll first want to meet with the shop’s service writer or owner and explain what the problem is. Use the notes you took so that you’re able to accurately describe the concerns you have and the symptoms you’re experiencing. Be as detailed as possible, and don’t feel rushed. It’s important to answer the service representative’s questions and listen to their suggestions and observations. If you don’t understand what they are telling you, ask for an explanation. You ought to completely comprehend the problem and the solutions before authorizing any work.

    All estimates must be provided in writing before any work begins. This estimate must include the total cost for all parts and labor, the method of repair and a list of all parts needed. Remember, never sign a blank work order or incomplete estimate.

    Sometimes a comprehensive diagnosis is needed before a repair shop can give you an accurate estimate. In this case, the estimate you sign may include just the cost of the car repair diagnosis and estimated auto repair labor cost. However, if the actual costs are more than the original estimate, the technicians must contact you before they move ahead with the repairs.

    Feel Confident When Signing a Contract for Auto Repairs
    When you’re satisfied with the information your Monterey County or San Benito County repair shop has given you, sign the estimate and service agreement. Verify that the repair shop has a phone number where they can reach you while your vehicle is in the shop. They must get your approval for additional work not listed on the original work order, and progress on your repairs can slow down or even stop if they can’t reach you to get consent. Likewise, if the car repair costs exceed the amount agreed upon on your estimate, the auto repair shop must get your approval before moving ahead. Your approval must be noted on the estimate and the invoice.

    Most mechanics in Monterey County and San Benito County including the larger cities of Salinas, Soledad, Monterey, Seaside, Hollister and Marina will allow you to see the damaged auto parts Once they’ve identified the problem or needed repairs. Remember, it’s your legal right to have damaged parts returned to you, but you have to you ask for them before or while the auto repair shop staff is writing the service request.

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  • Be a Good Customer
    Be a Good Auto Repair Shop Customer in Monterrey County and San Benito County

    You play a big part in the success of your automobile’s repair, even though you’re not the one doing the actual repairs.

    Here are a few simple steps you can take to be a good customer when you take your van, minivan, truck or car into an auto repair shop.

    • Be clear with the auto repair representative. Let them know what the problem is, what outcome you’re expecting from the vehicle repairs and specific ways they can meet your expectations.
    • Before you leave your car, truck or van at an auto repair shop in Monterey County and San Benito County, restate your expectations and goals, and reiterate to the auto repair technicians your understanding of the agreement. Most problems with auto repair shops occur because of a breakdown in communication. By being clear about the expectations you and the auto repair shop have, you can avoid most conflicts.
    • Be sure your service writer has a phone number where they can reach you at all times while your car or truck is in for car repairs. Your repairs will move along more smoothly if your service writer can reach you for any necessary updates or authorizations for car repair work.
    • Ask your service writer if they will call you with updates or if you should call to check on the progress of your vehicle repairs.
    • When your shop contacts you, return calls promptly to keep the repairs on schedule.
    • Pay for the car repairs promptly.
    • Remember, a smile goes a long way.

    Why would you want to be a good customer? Auto repair shops in Monterey County and San Benito County appreciate customers who are undemanding, candid and easy to work with. Your good customer behavior sets the tone from your end and creates an situation conducive to a good relationship. Your repairs may very well go smoother and problems may be more easily set right.

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Check The Work
Verify Completed Auto Repairs Against Your Written Invoice in Monterrey and San Benito Counties

When the work is completed, your mechanic is required to give you a written invoice. This must include:

  • The name and physical address of the shop and their auto repair registration number.
  • A list of all work performed, including warranty work done at no charge.
  • An itemized list of all replaced parts. This list must state whether the parts installed were new, used, salvaged, reconditioned, or rebuilt auto parts.
  • The total auto repair cost, including the amount charged for auto repair labor.
  • Any applicable hazardous waste disposal fees and the shop’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) number.
  • Your vehicle’s odometer reading at drop off and pick up, if you asked for the reading before signing the service agreement.

You’re entitled to have original parts returned to you if you asked for them when you signed the auto repair estimate. Mechanics may not be able to return to you parts that are under warranty as they may need to be returned to the supplier, but they still are required to show you the damaged parts.

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Written Warranties
Protect Your Investment with Written Warranties from Auto Repair Mechanics in Monterey County and San Benito County

Not all auto repair shops offer guarantees on their work. But those that do should give you a written warranty document that must detail:

  • The auto repair shop’s name and physical address.
  • What the warranty covers. This should include whether the shop will replace or repair failed parts or give you a refund. Any exclusions must be explicitly stated.
  • Your responsibility in the case of a product failure and what you need to do in order to redeem the warranty.
  • How long the warranty is valid, and whether it expires on a specific day or if it is prorated.
  • If you can transfer the automotive repair warranty coverage to the new owner in the event that you sell the vehicle.
  • Before leaving the auto repair shop, confirm any warranties offered by the repair shop or the parts manufacturer. If you fail to do this before you leave the premises, you may lose out on warranty coverage or inadvertently nullify warranties with specific terms.
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Top 10 Requests
Popular Auto Repair Services in San Benito County and Monterey County

The following auto repair services are the most familiar requests for local auto repair shops in Salinas, Hollister, Monterey, Seaside, San Juan Bautista, Soledad, Marina, Pacific Grove, and other cities in Monterey County and San Benito County.

Automobile Brake Repair
Brakes wear down as you use them, so it makes sense that it’s one of the most common auto repairs. Most brake repairs are brake pad replacements, which are relatively inexpensive. Brakes should be checked regularly, especially if you experience:

  • The brake warning light stays on continuously
  • Squealing or grinding sounds when you brake
  • The brake pedal feels hard when you step on it
  • Low or spongy-feeling brake pedal

Vehicle Brake Replacement
Like brake repair, auto brake replacements are common car repairs in Monterey County and San Benito County. Full brake replacements, including the brake disc, drum and rotor can be costly, but may be necessary if you’ve been driving with worn or damaged brakes that have warped or damaged the brake system.

Routine Vehicle Maintenance

Also known as a tune-up, routine vehicle maintenance is the regular check-up schedule generally recommended by vehicle manufacturers at 30-, 60-, and 90,000 mile intervals. Routine maintenance generally involves checking and replacing air filters, fuel filters, cabin filters and spark plugs. Most car mechanics in Monterey County and San Benito County will also check, flush and refill auto fluid and ensure the engine, exhaust and electrical systems are functioning correctly. These routine vehicle maintenance checks allow auto repair mechanics to prevent expensive car repairs by seeing small issues before they become big problems.

Auto Electrical Repair

As vehicles become more computerized and complex, auto electrical repairs become more common. Most auto electrical repairs are required for the alternator, the component that continually charges your battery. Vehicle starter repairs are also common. Experts recommend checking your entire auto electrical system every two years and whenever you experience drivability problems that appear to be electrical in nature.

Auto Electrical Repairs

Auto electrical problems include blown fuses, burned-out headlights, and serious electrical problems that keep you from safely driving your vehicle. Because these auto repairs demand special equipment, tools and repair methods, most auto electrical repairs are best left to automobile electrical repair technicians in Monterey County and San Benito County.

Auto Fuel System Repairs

Clogged fuel pumps are a common problem for Monterey County and San Benito County drivers who regularly run on less than ¼ tank of fuel. Other typical auto fuel system problems include clogged fuel filters, engine flooding and engine choking sounds. Auto fuel system repairs are usually best handled by professional car mechanics who have the experience and tools to clean, repair and replace fuel system components.

Auto Engine Repair

Often signaled by a lit Check Engine light, vehicle engine problems can also present themselves as sputtering, choking, fast or rough idling, slow acceleration or the vehicle not starting even though the ignition turns over. Because there is such a range of engine problems that can cause these symptoms, few car owners attempt do-it-yourself engine repairs. There are automobile mechanics throughout Monterey County and San Benito County that specialize in automotive engine repairs.

Auto Ignition System Repairs

Automobile ignition system repairs include battery, starter and car ignition replacements. Starters and ignitions can be expensive, but they are necessary in order to guarantee your car will start reliably.
Mobile Mechanic / Mobile Auto Repair Mobile mechanic shops in Monterey County and San Benito County are increasingly popular. Instead of having vehicles towed to repair shops, many customers opt to have licensed mechanics come to them. From tune-ups and routine maintenance to auto electrical repairs and belt and hose replacement, mobile mechanics come to your home or place of business by appointment to service your vehicle.

Auto Belt and Hose Repair and Replacement

Vehicle belts and hoses including drive belt, fan belt, serpentine belt, timing belt, heater hose and fuel hose keep auto engines and other vehicle systems running smoothly. Signs that may indicate auto belts and hoses problems include squeaking, squealing under the hood, fluid leaks, lit warning lights and overheating engines.

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Glossary Of Terms
Auto Repair Glossary

Below are key auto repair terms and descriptions that will help you navigate your way through your auto’s repair from beginning to end.

aftermarket auto parts
Auto repair parts not made by the original manufacturer. Aftermarket parts are made to fit and function the same as the original parts, but they’re often less expensive than OEM parts. Some aftermarket auto parts are redesigned to increase performance.

Also known as: functionally-equivalent auto parts, off-brand auto parts, aftermarket parts, off-make auto parts, performance aftermarket parts

auto air filter
A paper or synthetic filter that blocks dust, dirt and debris as air enters the engine is called an air filter.

Also known as: air filter, auto air filters, car air filter, performance air filter, auto air filter replacements, auto cabin air filter, interior air filter

all-wheel drive

Four-wheel drive systems increase traction on slippery roads and off-road surfaces. All-wheel drive is different from 4-wheel drive because drivers cannot disengage AWD systems.

Also known as: AWD

anti-freeze
Liquid in the cooling system that dissipates heat. Antifreeze prevents freezing during winter, cools the engine in summer and protects the cooling system from corrosion and rust.

Also known as: coolant

auto electrical repair
Auto repairs to the electrical system of a vehicle. Auto electrical repairs may include alternator repair, auto starter repair, ignition repair, and auto electrical wiring repairs or replacement.

Also known as: automobile electrical repair, automotive electrical repair, car electrical repair, auto electrical service

auto power loss
When an engine runs at reduced speed or requires more throttle to maintain speed.

Also known as: car power loss, low power output, automobile hesitating

catalytic converter
A vehicle’s catalytic converter isolates exhaust particles and burns them before they leave the tailpipe.

Also known as: cat, catcon

chassis
The undercarriage of a vehicle is known as the chassis. The chassis carries all power train and suspension parts.

Also known as: framework, auto case, auto frame, auto undercarriage

control arms
The moving suspension components mounted between the vehicle frame and the wheels.

Also known as: car wishbone, auto double wishbone, vehicle suspension

crankcase
The largest engine section, the crankcase contains the crankshaft.

crankshaft
The rod that transfers power from the engine to the transmission.

Also known as: crank, crank-shaft

domestic auto repair shops
Auto repair garages that specialize in repairs on domestic vehicles. General Motors, Ford, and Chrysler (also known as The Big Three) are considered domestic vehicle manufacturers.

fast idle
When a vehicle’s engine runs fast while the vehicle is stopped and idling.

flooded engine
When too much fuel is in the cylinders and makes starting difficult or impossible.

Also known as: engine flooded with gas, car flooded, engine stall, flooded vehicle

foreign auto repair shops
Foreign auto repair shops perform repairs and maintenance on vehicles manufactured by foreign car companies, including some models built in the United States, including BMW, Toyota, Honda and Lexus.

four-wheel drive
4WD is a drive system that powers all four wheels and provides better traction during off-road use and poor weather conditions.

Also known as: 4WD, 4×4, four by four, sport utility vehicle

front-wheel drive
A driving system that powers the front wheels of the vehicle. Front-wheel drive systems can be automatic or manual shift.

Also known as: FWD

fuel injection
The fuel delivery system where injectors (also known as nozzles) spray fuel into the cylinders, giving better fuel control and efficiency.

Also known as: electronic fuel injection (EFI)

hesitation
The momentary loss of power on acceleration that causes a vehicle to hesitate when gaining speed.

Also known as: engine hesitation, engine sputtering, auto stumbling

horsepower
The amount of energy produced by a vehicle’s engine.

Also known as: HP, mechanical horsepower, car horsepower, vehicle horsepower, electrical horsepower

idle
The term used to describe a vehicle that is stationary but running.

Also known as: idling, fast idle, slow idle, auto idling

mechanic
An auto mechanic is a professional who repairs and maintains vehicles.

Also known as: auto mechanic, automobile mechanic, auto repair technician, car mechanic, professional mechanic

mobile auto repair
A mechanic who repairs vehicles on-site is considered a mobile auto repair service. Mobile auto repair shops can often do minor and major repairs and tune-ups.

Also known as: on-site auto repair, mobile auto shop, full-service auto shop, mobile mechanic, mobile auto services, traveling mechanic

OEM auto parts (Original Equipment Manufacturer)
Auto parts made by the vehicle manufacturer. While they may cost more than aftermarket auto parts, OEM parts usually fit better, last longer and are covered by warranties.

Also known as: Original Equipment Manufacturer parts, stock vehicle parts, stock parts

power train
The term referring to the transmission and engine, the parts that deliver power to the vehicle.

RPM (Revolutions Per Minute)
The speed at which the engine crankshaft is turning. Too-fast or too-slow RPMs are a possible sign of car trouble.

rear differential
The differential is important for turning and cornering. It’s the gear system that allows one wheel to rotate faster than the other.

Also known as: auto differential, vehicle differential

rough idle
Rough idling is when the engine shakes and vibrates while the vehicle is running and stationary.

Also known as: vibrations, auto choking, engine sputtering

salvage parts
Auto parts taken from recycled vehicles are called salvage auto parts. These are often inexpensive auto repair parts, but they usually don’t come with warranties because they haven’t been repaired or altered so their reliability can’t be guaranteed. Salvage auto parts are often a last resort for vehicle owners looking for hard-to-find parts for rare or older vehicles.

Also known as: salvage auto parts, salvage car parts, salvaged parts, used auto parts, replacement parts, used car parts, salvaged replacement parts, used car parts, refurbished auto parts, rebuilt auto parts

serpentine belt
Serpentine belts are long, continuous belts that runs several automotive engine components, indulging the alternator, power steering pump, air pump and water pump.

Also known as: multi-vee belts, multi-v belts, multi-rib belts, s-belts, serpentine auto belt

shimmy
The term for a side-to-side motion that causes a vehicle’s tires and steering wheel to shake.

Also known as: car shaking, vehicle vibrations, car shimmying, vehicle shaking

sluggish performance
When a vehicle does not accelerate smoothly or quickly enough.

Also known as: auto hesitation, vehicle loss of power

suspension system
The shock absorbers and springs that create a smoother ride by dampening the motion of a vehicle as it drives is referred to as a vehicle’s suspension.

Also known as: suspension, auto suspension, car suspension, vehicle suspension system repairs

timing belt
The timing belt is a toothed belt that is operated by the crankshaft and drives the camshaft in a vehicle Broken timing belts cause valves to remain open and can cause engine damage when the valve is struck and bent by a piston.

undercarriage
The underside of a vehicle that supports and creates the framework.

Also known as: automobile framework, car body, auto frame, vehicle chassis

vacuum hose
A hose that creates vacuum suction force in the engine. Vacuum hoses move fluids from one part of the engine to another.

Also known as: vacuum hoses, fluid hoses, engine hoses, engine fluid hoses

water pump
The pump that moves coolant (antifreeze) through the radiator and engine.

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Frequently Asked Questions
Consumer Associations for Auto Repair in Monterey County and San Benito County

American Automobile Association (AAA) (http://www.aaa.com/)
California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) (http://www.autorepair.ca.gov/)
California Service Station and Automotive Repair Association (CSSARA) (http://www.cssara.org/)
Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) (http://www.i-car.com/)
Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) (http://www.jama.org/)…

American Automobile Association (AAA) (http://www.aaa.com/)
California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR) (http://www.autorepair.ca.gov/)
California Service Station and Automotive Repair Association (CSSARA) (http://www.cssara.org/)
Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) (http://www.i-car.com/)
Japanese Automobile Manufacturers Association (JAMA) (http://www.jama.org/)
Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine (AAAM) (http://www.carcrash.org/)
Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) (http://www.aftermarket.org/)
Alliance Of Automotive Service Providers (AASP) (http://www.autoserviceproviders.com/)
Automotive Composites Alliance (ACA) (http://www.autocomposites.org/)
Association of Diesel Specialists (ADS) (http://www.diesel.org/)
Engine Builders Association (AERA) (www.aera.org)
Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) (http://www.aiag.org/)
Automotive Recycler’s Association (ARA) (http://www.a-r-a.org/)
Automotive Service Association (ASA) (http://www.asashop.org/)
National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) (http://www.asecert.org/)
American Salvage Pool Association (ASPA) (http://www.aspa.com/)
Automotive Warehouse Distributor Association (AWDA) (http://www.awda.org/)
Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA) (http://www.mema.org/)
Society for the Advancement of Autodynamics (SAA) (http://www.autodynamics.org/)
Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) (http://www.sema.org/)

 

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