7 Tips to Help You Find a Cincinnati Car Mechanic

October 16th, 2019 by

A mechanic's hand and a customer's hand are giving the thumbs up.

Cincinnati is a great place to live, work, and play, but the weather here can be pretty rough on your vehicle – though, to be fair, that’s true of most places. From routine maintenance and service to major repairs and part replacements, enjoying and getting the most out of your car, truck, or SUV often depends on having the right mechanic to take care of your vehicle. Finding the best local mechanic in Cincinnati, however, is often easier said than done. We have a lot of customers ask us about what they should look for in a mechanic, and we’re always happy to help.

For starters, find out anything you can about their credentials to be sure they really know what they are doing – don’t be afraid to ask questions and get to know your mechanic. It should be easy to reach your mechanic or service professional during business hours, and it’s often best to find someone that specializes in your type of vehicle. If you’re not sure about a place, then try them out with a minor task to see how they do before you need more serious work or repairs performed.

Here at McCluskey Chevy, we often suggest our favorite service center for customers that need service or repairs: us! Our service professionals are among the best local mechanics in Cincinnati, and we specialize in working on all kinds of Chevrolet vehicles. If you’re still not sure, then keep reading and use this guide to find the best around.

#1 – Credentials and Certification

One of the first things you should look for to help you find the best local mechanic in Cincinnati is the right credentials and certification. Long gone are the days when most people could understand and work on the basic internal combustion engines in most vehicles. Modern cars, trucks, and SUVs are very complicated machines with computers and software integrated into various systems throughout the vehicle.

You want to make sure you pick a mechanic that has the proper training and certification to work on modern vehicles that need high-tech service and repairs. Look for certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, often abbreviated simply as ASE. This is the bare minimum you should accept and never trust your vehicle to someone that lacks it. It’s also a good idea to look for a shop or a mechanic that is factory-certified by the maker of your vehicle – so if you have a Chevy Silverado that needs work, look for a Chevy-certified mechanic.

#2 – Experience with Your Type of Vehicle

That leads us into this point: when looking for the best local mechanic in Cincinnati for your needs, make sure they have worked on your type of vehicle before. That factory certification is a great place to start, but you should try to go beyond that too. A lot of makers have a pretty big lineup, and someone with ten years of working on Chevy trucks might not be the best choice to do major repairs on your Corvette.

This is one of the reasons a car dealership is a great place to trust for work on your vehicle. Here at McCluskey Chevy, we specialize in Chevrolet vehicles, and we’ve been selling and working on them for years. You know that we have experience with your type of vehicle, especially if you bought it from us.

#3 – Ask Friends and Family

A woman is looking up customer reviews on local mechanics in Cincinnati, OH.

One of the best ways to get a good lead on a great mechanic in Cincinnati is by asking around. Ask your friends and family where they go and who they trust with their vehicles – this is especially useful if you know someone with the same type of car as you. Just use your own judgment, however; if your friend isn’t known for making the best decisions (we all have that friend), then maybe don’t ask their advice.

The internet is also a great resource these days for finding a local mechanic in the Cincinnati area. A simple search will bring up an overwhelming number of results, however, so this isn’t always as helpful as it might seem. Still, look at review sites and see what people have posted about any mechanic you are considering trusting with your vehicle.

#4 – Make Sure They’re Easy to Reach

When you find contact information for a shop or mechanic that looks good, give them a call. As long as it is during the posted hours of operation, you should expect someone to answer promptly and provide helpful customer service to you on the phone. This might seem like a strange step, but it’s quite important. If someone is difficult to reach when you’re trying to give them your business, how hard will they be to get a hold of once they already have your vehicle?

#5 – Start with Something Small

Once you do find a local mechanic in Cincinnati that seems like a great choice, then you should give them a test run. If your vehicle is coming up for a scheduled oil change, for example, that’s a great time to try out a new mechanic. Similarly, something minor, like replacing a headlamp or changing your filters is a good way to gauge their performance.

The last thing you want to do is try out an untested mechanic with something major like an engine rebuild or replacing your brakes. Starting with something small shows you the quality of their work and also reveals what they’ll be like to work with in the future. If they take three days to replace your headlamp, then you’ll probably need an act of congress to get them to finish a major project in a reasonable length of time.

#6 – Ask Lots of Questions

This one might seem a little strange or obvious, but you’d be surprised how often we have customers come to us that don’t ask many questions. When you’re about to trust someone with your vehicle, you have the right as the customer to ask them about their experience, about if they’ve worked on the same model as your car, and other pertinent questions. Ask about if their work is covered by a warranty you have or if they provide a warranty on the labor they perform.

A customer is asking a mechanic, while on his search for the best local mechanic in Cincinnati, OH, questions about his work in a garage.

Here at McCluskey Chevy, we’re always happy to answer all of your questions. We love when customers come to us that are curious about the workings of their vehicle and the kinds of services we provide. Any mechanic in the Cincinnati area that doesn’t want to answer your questions, talks down to you for asking them, or seems offended that you would ask them, is one you should stay away from.

#7 – Trust Your Instincts

Finally, remember that you’re the customer and it is your vehicle they are working on, listen to the voice in your head if it says that something is wrong. Don’t accept a mechanic that doesn’t want to provide you with an estimate in writing or that refuses to say how long they think something will take. Your greatest strength as a customer is your ability to walk away and not give a business your patronage.

If something feels off about a shop or a mechanic, then trust your instincts and walk away. Find somewhere else that welcomes you, treats you appropriately with kindness and understanding, and that provides the highest level of service for your vehicle. When looking for the best mechanic in Cincinnati, we suggest you start here with us at McCluskey Chevy, especially if you bought your vehicle with us; if we fail to meet your expectations in any way, then we will make it right.