Car repairs are enough of a hassle in and of themselves, but a large part of the stress comes from simply not knowing whether you’ll get ripped off by your mechanic or not.
Now they’ve built a network of what they’ve deemed the nation’s “Top Shops” – a ratings system designed by certified technicians to pinpoint the best shops in the country.
“We’re really redefining the consumer experience for an industry that’s so big and so untrusted,” said RepairPal CEO Art Shaw, who recently spoke with Your Money..
First, any shop that earns a “Top Shop” certification must agree to charge customers prices within the range of RepairPal’s price estimator and warrant repairs (including parts and labour) for at least 12 months or 12,000 miles.
And this isn’t a user-generated ratings system like Yelp! or Seamless, which make it all-too simple for businesses to inflate with fake reviews.
RepairPal enlists a team of ASE-certified Master Technicians to rank shops based on an exhaustive list of qualities:
-Repair diagnostic tools
-Parts, supplies and warranties
-Age of business (only shops over three years qualify)
-Customer input, gleaned from phone surveys taken from a list of the most current customers.
About 100 shops from 22 states have made the cut so far, but the site will eventually rate the top 20 per cent of all shops (20,000 to 26,000 in total) in the nation. The bulk of the those included are independently owned, with plans to incorporate dealership sites soon.
Shops do pay a monthly fee to participate in the Top Shop system and RepairPal will follow up every six to 12 months to be sure they’re in compliance with guidelines.