Word of mouth recommendations and online reviews are among the best ways to find a good mechanic. Yelp and Angie's List provide online reviews written by customers of different mechanics. Recommendations can come from trusted family and friends who have used a certain mechanic in the past or are perhaps repeat customers.
When making a decision based on online reviews, take into account such factors as how many negative, positive or neutral reviews a mechanic has and the reasons for customer dissatisfaction. It is wise to look for mechanics who have more positive feedback than negative or neutral feedback. Conversely, exercise caution when there are only a few reviews available or if much of the feedback is vague.
It is also wise to consider why any customers with negative feedback were displeased. Perhaps certain circumstances contributed to a frustrating situation, or maybe bias was present on a customer's part. Before ruling out a mechanic based on a piece of negative feedback, check if other customers have experienced the same problems.
After choosing a mechanic, determine if the mechanic has the skills required for the work that needs to be done. A good mechanic is knowledgeable, professional and able to explain matters thoroughly and clearly to their customers.