Calling an automotive locksmith is a very cost-efficient and convenient way of dealing with emergencies such as losing your car keys, locking yourself out of your car, or getting your key stuck in the ignition. A quick scan of your local yellow pages or a simple internet search for automotive locksmiths in your area will yield a lot of results. With so much competition in this niche market, rates are usually low; however, the company that offers the least expensive rates may not necessarily be the best option for you.
What to Look For in an Automotive Locksmith
When looking for an automotive locksmith, there are a lot of things you should consider. Track record, reputation, and customer’s feedback are just as important as how much they charge. The idea is to get value for your money and not to waste it on substandard materials and awful service. Here are some tips to help you find a good automotive locksmith you can call anytime you need help with unlocking your car door.
- Don’t settle for the first name that comes up on the search results. If you have choices, that’s good. That means these locksmith companies are doing their best to stay ahead of their competition. Check out their websites or call them up to inquire about their rates and services offered and compare them with each other. Some locksmith companies aren’t equipped to handle problems with transponder keys or smart key fobs yet, so it’s better to ask if they can handle it just to make sure.
- Define local? When making an inquiry, ask them exactly what areas they service. Some locksmith companies don’t cover certain areas and charge extra if their automotive locksmiths are dispatched to locations outside their service radius. This way you could decide whether to call another locksmith or pay the extra charges if you find yourself needing their services while outside their coverage area.
- Ask how much they charge before hiring them. If you need one immediately, ask for an estimate on how much everything will cost from parts to labor to other miscellaneous fees you need to pay. The rates they advertise usually aren’t “all-in”, meaning there are other things you need to pay for. By asking them for an estimate before hiring them, you won’t have a heart attack when they send you the bill.
- Ask your friends for recommendations. Locksmith companies with the best websites or newspaper ads don’t mean that they’re better than other automotive locksmiths in your area. A lot of locksmiths get more mileage from word of mouth. If you know people who have hired a locksmith company, ask them if they would recommend that you use the same service when you need help.
- Make sure that the automotive locksmith you are calling is licensed and insured. Even the best make mistakes, but to avoid causing more damage to your car, you should find out if both the company and automotive locksmith are licensed. Proof of insurance is also an important document to look for in case they accidentally damage your car. That way you know you won’t have to pay for a mistake they made.
Good automotive locksmiths aren’t hard to find if you know where to look and what you are looking for. Make sure you take the time to compare different companies and services before making a decision so that your money won’t be wasted.