If your car needs to go into the workshop for repairs, this can sometimes be very expensive. But, don’t despair, there are ways to save your hard-earned money! For example, you can have the defective part repaired instead of replacing it with a new product. Or you can compare the listed costs with car repair quotes online on various platforms. Alternatively, you can also get a quote from some online providers for the repair.
Car repair quotes online — is that even possible? Yes, you can now actually get car repair quotes online. There are now a number of portals where this is possible. Unfortunately, these are often very inaccurate, since without physically seeing the vehicle it is almost impossible to assess what is really broken. We therefore recommend a diagnosis app that reads your error memory and shows you exactly what is wrong with your car.
But aren’t there other ways to save costs even before the vehicle has to go to the workshop? Indeed there are, and we’ll tell you about them below.
How Much Should a Car Repair Cost?
This question does not have a generalized answer because the costs for a car repair not only vary from workshop to workshop but also within individual regions. This is not necessarily due to the cost of spare parts though. An air conditioning condenser for a Mercedes-Benz, for example, costs workshops across Germany more than €400 to purchase. On the one hand, the difference in price can be due to the car brands themselves. But it could also be because of differences in hourly wages across workshops and regions.
Which Car Brands Have the Most Expensive Spare Parts?
Before you consider looking for car repair quotes online, it’s best to understand that many people these days buy their cars after considering depreciation and car repair prices. It’s worth remembering that the size of the car also plays a role in the pricing of the spare parts. The exhaust system of a large SUV costs significantly more than that of a small Twingo.
In general, among small cars, VW is considered to be the car brand with the most expensive spare parts and also the highest relative vehicle repair costs. For example, while the alternator of a Citroën is between €200–€300, the price of a VW Polo alternator can be well over €400. Alongside Hyundai, VW is also in the upper price segment in the compact classes. In the case of SUVs, Audi, Toyota and VW rank the highest, with the prices for repairs being very expensive because of high spare parts costs.
What Influences the Hourly Rate?
- The workshop-type — Independent workshops are often around 20% cheaper than authorized workshops.
- The type of work to be performed.
- The region the workshop is located.
For this reason, it is worth comparing car repair quotes online in order to find garages with the best prices for car repairs.
How Do You Find a Cheap Auto Repair Shop, or Looking for Car Repair Quotes Online?
Thanks to the internet, it is relatively easy these days to compare car repair quotes online and therefore find a cheap car workshop. There are numerous platforms where you can get quotes online. These include, for example:
With almost all of the portals mentioned, you state what the repair is and which vehicle/model you have. In response to the online request, the providers will prepare a quote and then send you a cost estimate with the prices for the vehicle repair.
What Must the Car Repair Quotes Online Contain?
When requesting car repair quotes online, make sure that it includes the following information:
- The services provided during the repair.
- That the charge for labor is quoted in the form of working hours, with hourly cost.
- All materials and parts that are expected to be required for the repair and their cost.
Why is a Quote Necessary?
The quote can be useful for you in several ways. This allows you to easily compare the repair costs charged by different workshops. On this basis, it is easy to find the workshop with the cheapest prices for the repairs that need to be done. This protects you from sudden and unexpected high costs. You can see in advance which parts may need to be replaced and ask for cheap spare parts or ask for a repair instead of a replacement. These are all opportunities to save money, especially when looking for car repair quotes online.
Do I Have to Accept the Car Repair Quotes Online From a Workshop for Car Repairs?
When looking for a workshop with the best price, none of the car repair quotes online obtained are binding. The situation is different for the workshops. These are tied to the stated price for the vehicle repair. In most cases, the offers are therefore only valid for a certain period of time — usually 2 to 4 weeks.
In addition to obtaining various offers from online platforms, there are other ways to save money on car repairs.
Independent Workshops are Cheaper than Authorized Workshops
Free workshops usually repair all manufacturers and their models. In addition, they offer all standard repairs and services – and at cheaper hourly rates than an authorized workshop. In addition, spare parts from the independent parts trade are usually installed. Suppliers sell their Products and spare parts under their own name, which are supplied to the manufacturers in the same way.
But without the brand-independent workshops usually repair all manufacturers and models. In addition, they offer all standard repairs and services – and usually at cheaper hourly rates than an authorized workshop. In addition, spare parts from the independent parts trade are usually installed, at a lower cost.
Suppliers sell their Products and spare parts under their own name, which are supplied to the manufacturers in the same way.
But without the brand name on it, the spare parts are a lot cheaper. But is it actually possible to go to an independent workshop during the warranty period of your car? Yes, you can! Because an EU-wide regulation stipulates that inspections and repairs after an accident can also be carried out by independent workshops during the warranty period – as long as the specifications of the respective manufacturer are observed there. For this reason, the invoices from the independent workshop must always state that the measures were carried out in accordance with the specifications of the respective manufacturer.
For serious problems or warranty claims, however, it is still necessary to visit an authorized workshop. This includes, for example, defective electronics.
Used Parts Save Money
Another way to save money on car repairs is to use used or exchanged parts. Remember, there are situations where a new part does not always have to be installed. In the case of replacement parts, only certain elements of an assembly are replaced, instead of the entire component being removed and replaced. An example of this would be the alternator.
When it comes to alternators, it’s usually the pistons and bearings that go bad. In most cases, the case is still completely intact. For this reason, you should definitely ask for a replacement part with this diagnosis. Used parts, on the other hand, come from old cars or cars that have been involved in accidents. As a rule, these can be regarded as fully functional spare parts. So why not have a used bumper fitted instead of spending money on a new one?
Defective Electronics Can be Repaired
In the event that your car has defective electronics, many workshops are happy to offer a complete replacement of the affected control unit. But now there are also repair shops that repair the control units. You can save up to 80% of the costs compared to a new control unit.
The following providers have the repair of control units in their portfolio:
- Bosch repair service
- c3 – cramm car concepts
- Pixel error Hamburg
In technical jargon, this is referred to as a “repair in line with current market value”. This is ideal for instrument clusters, climate control units, car infotainment or engine and ABS/ESP control units.
In the case of electronics repairs that reflect the current market value, In the case of electronics repairs that reflect the current market value, the workshop is not only liable for the repair, but also for the removal and installation. In addition, many workshops also offer a three-year guarantee.
Carry Out Repairs Yourself for Minor Issues
is not always necessary to visit a workshop for minor problems. There are numerous instructions for minor car repairs on the internet. For example, These can teach you to remove dents and scratches in the paint yourself with little effort. Such small repair work falls under the term Smart Repair. This means repair techniques for glass, upholstery, leather or plastics that make a complete replacement of the affected parts superfluous.
Good sites for this are, besides YouTube:
- The tutorials at Autodoc.de
- The website kfz-reparaturanleitungen.de with video tutorials and background information to identify possible errors.
- mein-Autolexikon.de, here you can also search for a workshop.
But isn’t there another way that not only saves some money, but also avoids some costs altogether?
Have Workshop Costs Under Control With Car Repair Apps
With a car repair app, the smartphone becomes your own car repair shop. The app connects your mobile phone to the car’s onboard computer and takes a look at each individual control unit in the car. And not only that: In addition to reliably reading the errors, some apps also provide car repair instructions. In some cases, the repair can even be started from within the app, such as with Carly. With such apps, you can save yourself many expensive workshop visits.
Check Vehicle with Carly
With the Carly app, you can not only read out the error memory, i.e. check the car’s functionality, but you can also intervene in the car’s electronics and carry out maintenance work or repairs yourself. The app displays the information from all the vehicle’s control units on the smartphone and reports errors such as a defective electric tailgate or problems with the seat heating.
In addition, the app also warns about possible errors at an early stage. This often nips expensive follow-up repairs in the bud. To do this, the Carly app combs through the control units and interprets and visualizes the results. The app with the Smart Mechanic also provides exact instructions for the respective vehicle model for many faults. In addition, the car repair app offers other features:
- Reading and/or erasing engine and transmission fault codes.
- Monitoring driving style.
- Display detailed data such as oil temperature, outside temperature and engine speed.
- Fuel system monitoring and emissions verification.
- Resetting service intervals after an oil or brake change (service reset).
- Register a newly installed car battery from any manufacturer. This not only saves you the costs of the otherwise quite expensive original battery, but also the workshop costs.
- Checking the diesel particulate filter and starting a DPF regeneration. This saves you the cost of changing the filter in the workshop.
- Checking the loading status of the catalytic converter and performing a manual regeneration before the wear is too high and replacement is the last resort.
- The brake system can be switched to workshop mode for changing the brake pads or minor repair work. This allows you to do this work yourself.
- Adapting the values for automatic transmission to your own driving style.
In addition, the Smart Mechanic feature of the Carly app helps with car repairs with helpful instructions:
- Delivery of a precise error description
- Pictorial representation of the errors and output of the circuit diagrams for the respective vehicle.
- Repair tips
- Early warning system in the event of problems – consequential damage is minimized.
The car repair app is currently only available for BMW, Mini and VAG, but other models are in the works and the Carly app can be used to diagnose almost any car. But you are welcome to download the Carly Lite version, then you can also see what is possible with your car.
Save Money With Online Quotes and a Car Repair App
It’s not only in times of crisis and times of rising energy prices that we should try to save unnecessary costs. This also includes not paying unnecessarily high prices for car repairs. It’s a good thing that there are now numerous online platforms that you can use to get quotes to compare prices. This keeps the costs for a car repair reasonably within limits.
In addition, you will find a number of good and detailed instructions for car repairs on the Internet. It’s even easier to save money with a car repair app like the featured Carly app. Not only will you be made aware of errors in the vehicle at an early stage, you will also receive detailed repair instructions, especially for your car. Another plus point: The errors found can be read out and presented to the mechanics in the workshop. This means that less time is spent on error analysis and the workshop can start repairs straight away.
And now a small tip at the end: Even defective headlights do not necessarily have to be completely replaced nowadays. Since xenon And finally, a small tip: Even defective headlights do not necessarily have to be completely replaced nowadays. Since xenon or LED headlights can easily cost more than €1,000, a parking bump can quickly become unnecessarily expensive.
But some manufacturers have reworked and now designed the headlights in such a way that if you get into a fender bender, only the fastening straps break off. If the rest of the headlight is undamaged, it can be repaired with a special repair kit from the manufacturer. In most cases, these only cost between €20–€30. And if the workshop wants to replace the entire headlight the next time you visit the workshop, just ask for the manufacturer’s repair kit instead.