mechanic working on car

Have you ever wondered how automotive shops come up with estimates for car repairs? It’s a question that many people have, but few know the answer to. The truth is that it can vary greatly depending on the type of repair needed. The automotive shops use various techniques to determine what your car needs and how much it will cost, let us walk you through some things you should know about estimating vehicle repairs.

Getting an Estimate

While it may feel like it sometimes, automotive repair shops are not all about making money. Reputable automotive repair shops in Hays County, TX want to help you and get you the most competitive price. They try to keep your expenses down as much as they can and are willing to work with you on prices. Some repairs need more time or parts than others, and variables like this are what contribute to different estimates you will get for repairs on your vehicle.

Diagnostics and Cost Determination

 Some companies have model-specific standards that they go off of, determined by the manufacturer. This is especially common with automotive repairs when it comes to diagnostics. If you take your car into an auto shop, they will make sure to figure out exactly what is wrong with it and present you with an accurate estimate after determining exactly how much it will cost to fix.

 How Diagnostic Tools are Used to Determine the Problem

 Automotive mechanics use a variety of tools to determine what is wrong with your car. One of these tools is a code reader that will connect to your vehicle to see what kind of codes your vehicle is throwing. Mechanics will have advanced knowledge of what those codes mean and they will be able to follow the trail that comes from the codes that the scanner picks up from your vehicle and then be able to narrow the problem down. From there, they will determine much it will cost to fix your car and how long it’s going to take.

Replacement Costs

 Something else they consider when giving you an estimate is the cost of replacing individual parts. If it costs less to replace them than repair them, then that’s what they will do. In some cases, they will give you the option of ordering aftermarket parts that usually cost cheaper and help get the costs of the repair down, depending on your vehicle’s specific needs.

Estimating Repair Time

 If your vehicle needs extensive work done on it, estimating the time necessary for repairs can be difficult. They try our best to give accurate estimates, but this is where hourly rates come in handy. They will charge you what they think the repairs will cost, and then an extra amount for our time spent working on your car.

 Other Factors That Affect Estimates

 They also consider other factors when giving you a repair estimate, such as:

 a. Parts availability – if a needed part will take several days or longer to come in, they will factor that into the price.

 b. Labor rate – every shop has an hourly labor rate, and our technicians do their best to keep it as low as possible. If the work takes less time than expected, then you will pay less money for it.

 c. Time of day – if you bring your vehicle in late at night or early morning, then you will not have to pay an overtime rate.

 d. Seasonal demands are sometimes busier than others, and they factor this into our prices. They try to keep them as low as possible, though!


 Knowing what goes into the estimate is an important part of the process when it comes to vehicle repairs. The repair shops are also best to get you back on the road as soon as possible and at a reasonable price.

© 2010–2023 Reliable Automotive.   |   SEO by Dagmar Marketing