Six ways to avoid being scammed at car dealerships/ service centers

In present times, we hear a lot of cases of people getting scammed at car dealerships and service centers in India. Although many car dealers follow a transparent process and work in the favor of their customers the negative actions of some institutions affects the credibility of others. If you are taking your car for a service or thinking of selling your car, then this article is for you. We have curated a list of six ways to avoid even the possibility of being scammed at dealerships or service centers. Read on!
Know the condition of your car
It is of utmost importance for a customer to know about the condition of his/her car before taking it to the dealership or service center. Some car dealerships like to bring up even minor issues so that they can shell out more money from paint or unnecessary repairs. Always try and understand the impact of any problem on the functioning and reliability of the vehicle. Also, make sure to first find a reliable dealer and then proceed ahead.
Get your car valuation ready beforehand
If you are planning to sell your car, then this should be on the top of your list. Most of the dealers will lower or turn down the value of your car by using jargons. Avoid falling under this trap and know the exact value of your car in the market. For car valuation, one can consult different dealers personally or even get a free car valuation online from various car dealers conveniently.
Say no to handling charges
Not many of you would know the fact that handling charges are illegal. It’s illegal to take handling charges from the buyers as it is the responsibility of dealers to provide a registered vehicle to the customers. These charges should be borne by the dealer, not you. In case, the dealer insists you pay the handling charges, then you can approach the car manufacturer via their official helpline number or visit the regional sales manager in order to waive off the handling charges.
Inflated service bills
One of the most common scams is inflated service bills. Car servicing is one of the main earning sources of the dealerships/service centers. They do not earn a large margin by selling cars. For instance, service dealers recommend the replacement of car parts that are not required to be replaced and recommend fluid flushes routinely. So, next time when you get your car serviced, do check the bill thoroughly to avoid getting scammed. Only the things mentioned in the service manual are the ones that you should go for. Getting an engine flush or injector cleaning done on every service is totally unnecessary unless advised by the carmaker.
Check the Odometer
Before purchasing a used car at the dealership, you should first check the odometer. There is a possibility that the car’s odometer has been tampered with to lower the reading. For instance – the 2005 model with over 70,000 miles or a 2012 model with 38,000 miles. In order to know so, one can check the service history that will possess the record of maintenance and services of the car. Each entry will show up the odometer reading for that time. So make sure to match the numbers shown in the odometer before proceeding further.
Check the vehicle’s background
A car buyer must check the vehicle’s history through the VIN number before making a purchase. Some dealers wipe out the car issues by transferring the car to a different state. To avoid this, one can enter the vehicle registration number on reliable websites and know about the complete history of the vehicle.
Apart from the above-mentioned, another important thing to consider while buying a used car is an invoice that can provide you with the true details of the car specs and purchase date. Also, one must verify the vehicle’s insurance to avoid any prior claims. Above all, make sure to do enough research to get the best deal and always get the documents in order before making the full payment in case of used vehicles.

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