Few people are aware of what can be accomplished with an automotive repair manual, some basic automotive tools, some free time, and some extra cash. It’s a common misconception that all auto repairs must be carried out by experts, but this is not always the case. The majority of auto repair is actually quite simple to do, but it greatly depends on the model of the car and the nature of the issue. Sometimes, if you just take a short cut, you can save hundreds of dollars on auto repair. As an illustration, I once owned a rusted-out Voyager with an old and clumsy rear air conditioner. They claimed it would cost hundreds of dollars to fix because all the coolant was leaking out of it. The rear air conditioning unit is instead disconnected using a clamp from a standard hardware store. I spent less than a dollar, finished it in under an hour, and the issue was entirely resolved!
Auto repair, however, is unquestionably necessary for more serious issues. I am aware of some individuals who perform independent automotive engine repair, but I wouldn’t advise it unless you are extremely knowledgeable in the field. Because today’s vehicles are more advanced and complex than ever before, only a skilled automotive technician can accurately identify and resolve the issue. Don’t get me wrong; you can probably get enough assistance to get through if you have a knowledgeable helper by your side. However, you should probably leave the auto repairs to the professionals if you are even the slightest bit unsure of your skills.
Letting your mechanic identify the issue before you go ahead and make the necessary repairs is one of the best compromises. The biggest risk of trying to do your own auto repair is not knowing what the issue is. Amateur mechanics are prone to jumping to conclusions and missing the real problem. This could result in a variety of issues and will typically cost you more money than you would save by not hiring a mechanic. However, you can still save a lot of money on labor costs by doing the job yourself if you have your mechanic determine what is wrong. While it may not make sense to everyone, for some it actually does.