Nobody likes waiting, but it’s an inevitability of life that comes with the territory of taking your car into a shop for repair. Sometimes, the drudgery of sitting around and twiddling your thumbs can be made a lot more bearable if you’ve got some idea of what kind of wait time to expect. But estimating that can be a bit like estimating the absolute unknown.
Always bear in mind that the amount of time you’re going to have to wait for your car to be repaired depends entirely on what you’re having done. If you’re talking about a simple procedure like an oil change, tire rotation, or tire replacement, you’re looking at anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour for the actual work to be completed. If you’re having more extensive work done, like having your brakes worked on or your air conditioning repaired, it may take several hours. And if you’ve brought your vehicle in with a laundry list of requests, or for extensive work, you could be waiting all day – or longer. Yet another unknown wait time factor depends on the condition of your car, which is going to factor greatly into the ability of the mechanic to get the job done in a timely manner.
Regardless of how short or how long the wait time you’re given, all of that can go straight out the window if a repair shop is backed up. Suddenly, that 30-minute wait for a set of new tires can develop into a four-hour torture session spent rubbing elbows with a room full of strangers, all eager and impatient to get on their way. More intensive work can drag on even longer, in some cases requiring days to complete.
Your best bet to avoid all of this? Plan ahead.
Drop your car off to your mechanic as early in the morning as possible and get a ride home, where you can spend that period of waiting far more productively than you would sitting in an auto repair shop waiting room. Some shops even allow you to drop off your keys in a night lockbox so that you don’t even have to worry about getting out of bed early. Also, a growing number of auto mechanic shops throughout US are starting to offer free shuttle service to your home, as long as it’s within a specific vicinity. And some offer free loaner cars as well. If you find that none of the above are viable options, you may just have to hunker down and sit out the wait. Hope you brought a book.