Going to college is one of the most exciting times in life for your child, but it also comes with the stress of moving—for your and your child—to a new, unfamiliar city. Prepare your student in advance in case of emergency auto repair situations, or for scheduled maintenance, by choosing an expert BMW repair shop for your student’s ride.
It’s in your best interest to start searching for a new BMW service center by UC Santa Barbara’s campus before your student has a problem, that way if their BMW breaks down or is in need of routine maintenance, no one will be stressing trying to scramble around finding a qualified BMW repair shop. It’s best to schedule a maintenance visit so your student can get familiar with the repair shop in a relaxed situation.
Here a few tips for checking out a specialized BMW mechanic in Santa Barbara:
- Labor Rate: Find out what the labor rate is prior to confirming an appointment. Most of the time you’ll be paying less at an independent BMW service center, than that of the dealer.
- Warranty: Find out the warranty on parts and labor, and any guarantees on work that they perform on your student’s BMW.
- Certifications/Specializations: Ask if they specialize in BMW automobiles, or import and foreign vehicles. Find out if they are ASE certified and/or AAA approved. Generally, these shops have excellent reputations and staff BMW specialists with up-to-date training.
- Diagnostics/Tools: BMW vehicles require more than your typical OBDII scan tool. BMW has specific diagnostic computers, software and tools to diagnose and repair your undergrad’s vehicle precisely.
- Shuttle Service: Find out if the shop has a convenient shuttle service to and from UCSB’s campus for pick-up and drop-off.
- After Hours Drop-off/Pick-up: Sometimes those 7:00 am and 7:00 pm classes conflict with normal business hours for BMW repair shops. See if the shop allows for after hours drop-off and/or pick-up. Many times this requires you to sign a form and leave/pick-up keys located in a secure box.
- Customer References: Is the shop willing to disclose customer references to you that you can contact? If so, seek out other customer’s experiences.
- Written Estimate: When calling to speak with someone at the shop, insist upon obtaining a written estimate of what you discussed over the phone. That way when your student goes in to drop their car off for repairs, they have the written contract of all the repairs needing to be done, so there aren’t any financial surprises.
Don’t ever be afraid to ask questions. Having clear communication is essential when choosing an expert BMW repair shop from long distance, before the semester starts.
Local, independent BMW service shops near UCSB:
- Ayers Automotive Repairs – 1301 Chapala Street
- Bowman’s Auto Repair – 910 Philinda Avenue, Ste. A
- Muller & Goss Automotive Repair – 424 North Quarantina Street
- Oren’s Automotive - 227 Gray Avenue
- Schneider Autohaus – 2703 De La Vina Street
- SwedeMasters - 428 N. Salsipuedes
- The Garage Santa Barbara - 508 Laguna Street
The BMW professionals at local UCSB BMW repair shops are there to help assure you that you’ve chosen the right place for your student to bring their vehicle in for repairs or maintenance. They understand that when your son or daughter is away at UCSB, you want to make sure their BMW receives the best care, and keeps them safe on the road.
Search for a local, independent BMW repair shop with BMW mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the cost.