What Does Diagnostics Mean?
Since 1996, every car manufactured is standard equipped with the second-generation on-board diagnostics system (OBD-II). Specific to the United States, this requirement was put in place to help prevent excessive vehicle emissions as part of the Clean Air Act. The OBD-II system is the part of the engine control unit that consistently monitors various components of the car, namely the engine, exhaust, and fuel system. If it detects an abnormality with one of the parts, it’ll send the respective trouble code to the OBD-II system; the trouble code identifies where and what the issue is in your vehicle. From there, the check engine light will appear in the dashboard, alerting the driver to the potential problem. It is then the driver’s responsibility to visit our shop for professional vehicle diagnostics.
Common Types of Problems
One of the most beneficial aspects of the on-board vehicle diagnostics system is that it can spot issues before they become severe or even catastrophic. Problems that trigger the check engine light range from minor to major, such as a loose gas cap or a misfiring engine. Additional triggers include a failing mass airflow sensor, worn spark plugs or spark plug wires, a faulty alternator, failing ignition coils, a bad oxygen sensor, or a vacuum leak. The list goes on for potential problems, which is why it’s important to bring your car to a reputable auto shop for a comprehensive inspection. Our team has the know-how and equipment to determine the issue at hand and provide an effective solution, whether that be the need for repair or a simple engine tune-up.
The Vehicle Diagnostics Process
So, how do we find out what’s wrong? We thought you would ask. When you bring your car in, our team will use our scan tool or code reader technology to retrieve the trouble code information from your vehicle’s computer system. This will point us to the problem area, and from there, we’ll conduct an in-depth inspection (and of the surrounding areas) to troubleshoot the exact issue. We’ll provide you a play-by-play to ensure you understand the process and then the steps for repair. As a bonus of sorts, our website provides an online diagnostics center tool for your use. If you’re experiencing problems, you can use this as a guideline for what may be wrong. It’ll ask you information about your car, its symptoms, and a list of possible reasons indicating what could be happening. It is completely free and can be used at any time.