I have read on here about taking a car to a mechanic to have looked over before purchasing a car. I do not have a mechanic that I know or have used. How do I decide where to take the car too? Do you have to make an appointment ahead of time? Should a mechanic know what to look for? Is taking a car to a mechanic necessary if the car is certified pre-owned? I read what was written here about looking over the records from the dealership that certified the car. Even if the car isn't certified but it is only a year or two old should I still take it to a mechanic? I really appreciate your help.
Most good mechanics will have a pretty good idea of what to look for when inspecting a car. One way to make sure the mechanic is quality is ask to have a ASE Master mechanic inspect your car. This will cost a bit more (probably a bit over $100), but you'll know he's doing a good job. Just call up shops to see if they have an ASE master mechanic on staff and ask when he can inspect your car.
One way to get a bit more out of the inspection is to bring a form for them to fill out during the inspection. One good one can be found at OnPointInspection.com. This will help you make sure that all the important points are checked in the inspection.