Some problems are easier to find, for example, "My car won't start", can probably be diagnosed fairly easily, but some are not as easy -"it's broken, fix it", or "Sometimes my car runs really rough, but it isn't now. Can you have it fixed when I get back in an hour?" For additional info on finding and dealing with a repair shop see the links below.
One shop owner said he likes for the customer to bring a list of what symptoms are to be fixed, including any related observations. If your car runs rough, makes a noise, shakes, etc., but not all the time, such a list may be an appropriate aid to the mechanic. Is it totally random, or is it only under certain conditions? Some examples of possible kinds of information that may assist an auto technician follow.
Does the problem occur
Computers in cars have become more sophisticated, and can help isolate problems, however, they can't diagnose everything. A little help from the customer can aid an experienced technician track down a problem and keep repair time and costs down. It can also help the technician check to be sure the problem is corrected under the conditions in which you observe it. This does not mean you should try to diagnose the problem for the technician, just give the best explanation of what you are observing and how this is different than you expect.
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