For many years, people have asked this question? Choosing an independent dealer or a mechanic is tough for people because of the pros and cons associated with both. We hesitate to take a side as we find benefits in both. Whether you consider the professionalism of your dealership or have taken your vehicle to a local mechanic for years, you have a level of gratitude and satisfaction associated with both that makes you consider their service.
What exactly each of them has to offer us? Before making your next big decision in car repair, look at the pros and cons of each.
Dealer vs. mechanic – The difference
At first glance, the difference between a dealer and a mechanic looks purely financial. Those with newly purchased cars will consider the perks offered by their dealership. On the other hand, car owners also jump from mechanic to mechanic to find a trusted and reliable service.
However, there is more to all this than it seems.
Dealers have the expertise for a specific brand; for example, they specialize in BMW or Ford. They provide warranties backed by the manufacturers and utilize high-quality parts straight from the company. The mechanics at a dealership have the training and expertise to handle current issues in the specific brand.
Independent mechanics, on the other, provide personalized services. These mechanics offer scheduled maintenance, customer service, and better pricing. Unlike a dealership, you can establish a relationship with a mechanic and communicate with them for better rapport. Building a relationship with a mechanic goes in your favor, as customers who visit local mechanics have a better experience and can go for discounted pricing.
Benefits of Dealership
Dealerships provide a trained staff of mechanics and technicians specializing in a specific brand. They work on hundreds of vehicles every month, so there is no shortage of expertise with a dealership. Besides quick and efficient service, they also use high-quality parts specific to the make and model of your vehicle. Dealers also have the authority to inspect the car on the manufacturer’s methods, so you can rest assured that your vehicle is in the right hands.
Most modern vehicles require diagnostic equipment that only dealers possess. It is more beneficial to visit a dealership to handle the issues rather than pay a mechanic to understand. Whether your car has a complex mechanical or recurring electrical problem, a dealership has the resources and expertise to keep it updated and restored.
Ultimately, you have an advantage in the dealership if you possess a manufacturer’s warranty. Think of it as health insurance, where your warranty covers the repairs if it remains active. After it expires, you can either extend it or pay for the needed repairs.
Benefits of an Independent mechanic
Although they are just smaller than dealerships, independent mechanics have skills equal to dealers in terms of services and repair. They usually staff former technicians working with dealerships, so they have diverse expertise. Unlike a dealership, customers can directly contact a mechanic and discuss the details of their repairs. Additionally, mechanics have expertise in various brands and can handle issues of almost every vehicle. They have a specialty in multiple brands due to their diverse experience and, in some cases, also provide a third-party warranty.
Nurturing a relationship with a mechanic is also advantageous in terms of better pricing. Most people trust the skills of a mechanic to delve deep into an issue and mitigate it accordingly. Mechanics usually rank higher in terms of price, quality, and customer satisfaction.
Disadvantages of Dealers
- Dealers excel in prestige and expertise but not in pricing.
- They have time constraints because of factory-made equipment. If stock is unavailable, dealers need to ship that item and make repairs. It usually takes more time to complete and further inflates prices.
- You cannot interact with or contact your dealer mechanic as they have a pool of technicians. There are difficulties in establishing relationships with dealers.
Disadvantages of Mechanics
- Honesty and reliability are the main factors when finding the right mechanic.
- Mechanics use both local and factory-made parts for repairs. If you go for factory parts, you must pay for them and wait for shipping time.
- Finding the right mechanic with trustworthy services is rather tricky if you live in a large city.