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During the first 30,000 miles, I had to replace my rotors TWICE despite bringing my car in for service exactly when due each 5,000 miles. (VW says theirs are too short to cut.) Now that I am out of warranty at 40,000, I no longer intend to bring it to the dealer for service. I want to find a local mechanic to service my car. I have two questions: 1. what is the best way for me to evaluate a skilled, trustworthy foreign car mechanic and 2. what do I need to watch out for so that I don

Answers from the Automotive Experts

Lori Johnson, Owner and Instructor at Ladies Start Your Engines Dear Nicole, Most rotors are made to specification now days and you have to replace them when they get worn. This is a good thing for you because it guarantees that someone who doesn't know what their doing won't cut them too thin and risk your safety. That being said, usually the reason that brakes wear faster is because the driver has their foot on the brake while their driving. I'm assuming that you not only needed rotors, but also brake pads. If this is the case, try and pay attention to whether you are "riding" the brakes while driving. Changing your driving habits could save you some money and make the brakes last longer. As for finding a reputable shop to work on your vehicle, I would recommend that you find an ASE certified shop. Here is a website that will allow you to search your area by zip code. This will at least guarantee that the technicians are certified. http://www.ase.com/bluesealsearch/locator.php Good luck. Lori Johnson New at Askpatty: Ask Patty is announcing CarBlabber. It's car reviews for women by women like you! What does your car mean to you? Do you love or hate your car? Is your car a fashion statement or a pile of junk? We want to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly about your car. Ask Patty is offering a lineup of amazing products as prizes to CarBlabber members (and signing up is totally free!). All you have to do is create a profile, review a car and add a photo to your review! Sign up at www.askpatty.com/carblabber http://askpatty.typepad.com/ask_patty_/2007/08/blab-about-your.html

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