An unexpected auto repair bill can blow a big hole in your budget, but there may be a way to save up to thousands of dollars with just some research.
According to the November issue of Consumer Reports, many consumers are getting ripped off because automakers don't widely promote programs that provide free or deeply discounted service work. Such secret or hidden warranties cover often cover things like air conditioning system problems, peeling paint or faulty parts that don't affect the safety of passengers. They contrast that to recalls that cover problems relating to safety, such as the General Motors (GM) ignition switch recall earlier this year.
"If you're having a problem, particularly a recurring one," said Jonathon Linkov, deputy auto editor at Consumer Reports, "definitely do some leg work. Talk to the dealer service department." Input your vehicle identification number on the manufacturer's website to find such service actions or campaigns.