Motor Vehicle Repair 101

Most of us depend on our vehicle to get us to where we need to go. When your vehicle needs service or repairs, you want it done quickly, correctly and for a fair price. Check out the following tips when it’s time for repairs.

  • The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is responsible for regulating motor vehicle repair shops in the state of Florida.
  • Any person who, for compensation, engages or attempts to engage in the repair of motor vehicles owned by others must register with Agriculture and Consumer Services every two years.
  • Repair shops, by law, are required to include their registration number in advertisements, announcements or listings relating to motor vehicle repair.
  • When selecting a repair shop, ask for recommendations from friends, family and people you trust.
  • Look for a repair shop before you need one and start with minor repairs.
  • The Florida Motor Vehicle Repair Act requires that, before the work is done, the repair shop gives the consumer a written estimate if it will cost more than $100.
  • The repair shop must obtain your approval if the price of repairs will exceed the cost listed on the estimate by more than $10 or 10%, whichever is greater, but not to exceed $50.
  • Repairs may be canceled if they exceed the estimate and the repair shop must reassemble the vehicle, unless it is unsafe to drive. If given prior notice on the estimate, the shop may charge you fees for tear down, reassembly and destroyed items.
  • If the repair shop does not have a warranty agreement or parts exchange program (with the manufacturer, supplier or distributor) you are entitled to receive any replaced parts if you requested them at the time you authorized the repairs.
  • Upon completion, the repair shop must provide each customer with a legible copy of an invoice that includes the completed repairs, total cost and any warranties.