Why is it important to keep accurate repair records?

When you purchase or lease your vehicle, you have an expectation that your vehicle will work properly. Unfortunately, problems tend to appear as you drive your vehicle. When problems start occurring, it is extremely important that you immediately take your vehicle to an authorized repair facility. If the authorized repair facility, usually the “big” dealerships, attempts to repair your vehicle two or more times for the same problem within the warranty period and the problem is not fixed, chances are that the vehicle will qualify as a lemon.

This is where it’s important to have accurate records. When you take your vehicle into a service facility, you want to make sure that the service advisor properly documents what you told them on the service records. If you tell them that you hear a noise from the front of the vehicle, make sure that they write it down properly. When a dealership sees that a vehicle has come in for the same problem two or more times, they may take what you said and write it down a little bit different so that it does not appear that you are complaining about the same problems.

When you bring your vehicle into an authorized repair facility, a service advisor will ask you what problems you are having with your vehicle and write them down. Sometimes, they will get into the vehicle with you and ask you to demonstrate or show them what problems you are having. 

It is important that the service advisor documents your problems even if the problems do not occur while he or she is present. A technician is the one who is qualified to inspect your vehicle, not the service advisor.


After you check in and speak with the advisor, they’ll print out a repair order for you. The repair order will list all your problems and may include an estimate for work to be performed if that work is not covered by warranty such as oil changes. Once you get the repair order, review it to make sure they properly wrote down everything you told them.

This is a common tactic by automobile garage repair services. The technicians and advisors will leave things out of the records and just verbally tell you that they will check what you told them because they often get away with it. This is where you need to verify what they wrote down.

Next, the service facility will inspect your vehicle. After the technicians have inspected and/or made repairs to the vehicle, the advisor will call you and let you know what is going on with your vehicle. They will tell you whether your vehicle is ready to be picked up or if they will need to keep it longer for repairs. If they need to keep your vehicle for repairs, make sure that you request a rental because they often will take longer to repair your vehicle.

There may be times that the dealership will need to keep your vehicle for several days and you may ask yourself, is there a limit on how long the dealership can keep my car for repair?

When you take your vehicle to a dealership, you expect them to be able repair it quickly. There is no limit as to how long a dealership can keep your vehicle for repair, but if the repair is taking more than 30 days, then you may have a solid Lemon Law claim. According to the California Lemon Law, you are entitled to a replacement or refund if the dealership takes longer than 30 days to repair your vehicle.

There is a reason why the California Lemon Law chose a 30-day mark for a vehicle to qualify as a lemon. Generally, if it takes more than 30 days to repair a vehicle, there is a substantial problem with the vehicle that will impair its use, value and safety.

When you finally get your vehicle back, they will give you a final service record. This service record will have your initial complaints followed by what the technician found and any repairs that they made. Make sure you keep these repair orders for your records.

In addition to keeping the all the repair orders from authorized service facilities and any regular maintenance done on your vehicle, it’s a good idea to keep a log of dates/times of when you experience problems with your vehicle. Whenever you experience the problem, when its safe, you should take photos/videos. The photos/videos will be extremely helpful to your claim.

Call us today for a free consultation before time runs out to pursue your claim.

Phone: (800) 917-7147

Email: info@thelemonpros.com

Why Choose The Lemon Pros?

Our specialty is Lemon Law, that is why we only handle Lemon Law claims. When you hire us, our attorneys will do all the legal work for you, because we understand the stress that consumers like you deal with when they have a Lemon.

We have an excellent success record in representing consumers just like you! We are award winning attorneys, but that has not gotten to our heads. We are attorneys who care and give personalized attention to each and every client, our attorneys directly handle your claim.

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