The Know Your Mechanic Rule

Warren Buffet has said many times in Berkshire’s annual report “if you don’t know jewellery, know your jeweller.”

I can vouch for this as true; a friend of mine runs a jewellery store and he has given me amazing deals.

Most of us don’t buy jewellery on a regular basis, however. And some of us might even get away with not buying it at all. For most of us, though, I think the Buffet statement could read “if you don’t know cars, know your mechanic.”

I would love to learn more about automobiles. As it stands, I have a decent understanding of what problem I have, but have no idea of how to fix it. I have been fortunate in that I have been going to the same mechanic for the past 7 years. He runs a small garage from the side of his house, and there is no one I trust more with my car.

Yesterday my car started acting up a bit, so I took it in to the shop today. He worked on the car for about an hour, tweaked a part, and gave me an oil change (he also gave me a short lecture for driving too far without a change, to which I sheepishly acknowledged I was at fault for) and only charged me for the new oil he put in.

As far as the part goes, he said it’s a bit of an expensive part, so he tried to McGyver it a bit, and said to come back if I have any problems.

I cannot think of any other mechanic that would do his best to avoid having me pay more. I think a good number would say the part is shot, order a new one, and charge the labour and shipping.

This is not the first time this has happened, either. I knew I was having trouble with either a spark-plug, or the fuel-line some time ago so I brought it in. He not only fixed that problem, but pulled my muffler off to patch a hole that he could hear. I think he charged me about the amount of the welding rod that he used.

It means, of course, that I bring him a little gift every time to thank him for the last time. Usually a brand of senbei crackers he told me he likes.

No matter what, I surely get more value than I pay for.

If you don’t have a great mechanic, you may have to build some rapport for a few years, but once you have a mechanic you can trust, you know that you will never be suckered into buying lemons or blood diamonds.

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3 responses to “The Know Your Mechanic Rule

  1. Pingback: This and That: Interest rates, debt and more… | Canadian Capitalist

  2. Pingback: This and That: Interest rates, debt and more… | MoneySense

  3. Pingback: Good Help Is Hard To Find | In Search of Salt

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