When your vehicle develops an issue running or driving, you must address the problem to avoid ending up stranded on the side of the road. A trip to the auto shop can initially leave you with sticker shock, especially when complex repairs are required. Attempting to fix the vehicle on your own, however, can end up costing even more time and money unless you already have all of the required equipment, devices and tools on hand. Here are the three main barriers that complicate the process of performing your own auto repairs.
You may lack both the training and equipment required to avoid accidental injuries while performing auto repairs. Although you may have a jack available for emergency tire changes, for example, it is not safe to leave the car resting on that small hydraulic lift while performing part replacements or other repairs.
If the jack fails, it will immediately drop the car onto the ground, crushing whatever lies beneath. Therefore, it is absolutely vital that you place jack stands at the correct points to protect yourself from that situation. Technicians may also slide a rim and tire beneath the car for additional reassurance.
Modern vehicles utilize computer equipment to monitor various systems that keep the car operating properly. When a specific system fails, its attached sensor sends a message to the onboard computer. To accurately diagnose these high tech systems, you must hook a scanning device to the computer using a port in the engine bay or under the dash.
Auto parts stores have universal scanners you can borrow, but the information provided is often much too vague to be of much help. Auto repair shops, on the other hand, often have access to auto manufacturers' proprietary scanners that provide an accurate diagnosis and repair recommendation.
Specialty Hand Tools
Even if you manage to acquire the right safety equipment and accurately diagnose your vehicle, you may run into problems when it comes time to remove and replace parts. Many engine and transmission components require specialty hand tools designed to align the parts and tighten the hardware without damaging adjacent components.
The specialty tools are available from most vehicle manufacturers at a huge premium. You would need to use the tool several times over to justify its expense. If you keep your vehicle well maintained, however, you would likely only need to use each specialty tool only once or twice over the life of your car, truck or van.
To keep your car running well for years, it is beneficial to have an experienced auto technician perform the required repairs using quality parts. The auto tech will use the correct safety equipment, scanning devices and specialty tools to perform the diagnostic process to identify the exact cause of your vehicle's issue. Upon making a definite diagnosis, the repairs can be completed in a timely manner. Your technician can also keep your vehicle maintained on the manufacturer's suggested schedule to prevent premature wear and damage of moving parts. For more information, contact a local auto shop like G P Automotive.