Certified vs. Un-Certified Automotive Technicians
Certified Automotive Technicians are held to measurable and strict standards in their line of work, and they are accountable to those standards individually. As their employer, Five Star is also dedicated to upholding those standards of practice. Certified Technicians undergo regular training and are always updating their knowledge base in order to keep their certification current and relative to the work they are performing in the shop.
At Five Star Auto Center, our top technicians are ASE Certified, and our shop is AAA Certified and BBB Certified. We insist on these certifications because they elevate the level of service we’re able to give our customers and ensure our technicians are well-trained, knowledgeable and helpful to the customers we serve. While it is more expensive, (certifications and the level of school involved mean these employees make higher wages than standard technicians) we invest in our technicians because it ends up better for our customers in the long run, and it’s just good for everyone!
The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (or, ASE) promotes excellence in vehicle repair, service and parts distribution. They are the leading independent organization of automotive service certification and performance. ASE Certification testing means peace of mind for auto service managers and customers.
Technicians looking to become ASE certified must pass an ASE Certification test, must have two years of on-the-job training, or one year of training and a two-year degree in automotive repair to qualify for certification. The tests are challenging. Only two out of every three test-takers pass on their first attempt. To remain ASE certified, professionals must retest every five years to keep up with ever-advancing automotive technology. They certify to a variety of different specialties: there are 40-plus exams each designed to discern the automotive service technician’s knowledge of job-related skills. Ask your technician which ASE Certifications they possess next time you’re in the shop!
Uncertified Techs have no accountability (or repercussions!) for repairs or services performed on a vehicle. There is also no proof of the training they’ve received or knowledge of cars they have. They could say they know how to work on your foreign car, or your complex part, but have had no training on it since school or just never learned. You’ll never know if they’re watching a YouTube How-To and charging you per hour to do so!
A consumer can request re-do of services from the shop, but there may be no recourse for shoddy work done from the shop or the technician. ASE and AAA Certification both have guarantees in place for the consumer to protect from these sorts of issues.
In short, certified automotive technicians are reliable, trusted, and accountable for the work they perform. We have at least 3 ASE certified mechanics on any given shift and 70% of our staff including service writers are ASE certified. So you know that someone who has had expert level training, testing and accountability is always working on and overseeing the work done on your vehicle.
Five Star Auto Center as a whole is also certified to several standards.
The BBB Standards for Trust are a comprehensive set of best practices for how businesses should treat the public in a fair and honest manner. We work with their standards to foster honest and responsive relationships between businesses and consumers — instilling consumer confidence and advancing a trustworthy marketplace for all.
AAA offers a certification to approved Auto Repair and Maintenance Facilities that meet strict quality standards. It requires an annual review and detailed inspection. They visit the shop, review all documentation and our technician certifications, and verify that all of these meets their standards. They review the state of the shop, its cleanliness, and its organization against their standards and then approve or let us know anything to change or update before they give us AAA Certification. We maintain this certification because it verifies that we value these standards and are holding ourselves accountable for our work and facility!
If you’re interested, you can check out AAA’s guide on How to find a shop you trust (hint, Five Star Auto Center ticks all the boxes!). At Five Star, AAA Members enjoy a 10% discount on labor costs as well as our exceptional 36,000 mile/3 year warranty on all parts that we install.
While certifications, tests and accountability are time-consuming and strenuous for our staff and shop, we’re happy to accommodate these standards in order to better serve our customers. Make an appointment online today for your maintenance needs with the certified technicians in our repair department.