Today, automobiles are basically computers on wheels. This can be a good thing when it comes to diagnosing problems. It used to be that we would have to inspect the vehicle thoroughly to determine what was wrong with it. This could take a tremendous amount of time and increase your labor costs. Now, your vehicle has a computer system that will tell us what is wrong. Let’s talk about the benefits of engine diagnostics below.
The Dashboard Warning System
You already know that you have dashboard warning lights on the dashboard. These lights turn on briefly when you first start your automobile and turn off one by one. Your vehicle has a main computer chip that is called the engine control unit or the engine control module. All of the systems have sensors. The lights come on while the sensors are checking the system to make sure everything is okay. If everything is fine, the light will turn off because the sensors have told the engine control unit that all is well.
These system sensors do not stop working after the engine has started. Your vehicle’s computer system is constantly monitoring all of the operations that are going on underneath the hood and underneath the body of the automobile. If something goes wrong, a system sensor will report the problem to the engine control unit. In some cases, the engine control unit may be able to fix the problem. If it is unable to do this, it will turn on an associated dashboard warning light. This is your dashboard warning system.
The Diagnostic Test
When you bring your vehicle to our shop because a warning light is on, we can run a diagnostic test that will download the data that the engine control unit received from the system sensor. This data contains specific codes that point us directly to the problem. For example, let’s assume for the moment that your oxygen sensor is malfunctioning. The code will point us directly to the oxygen sensor, and we will know right away that we need to replace it because it has gone bad.
This is where the benefit of engine diagnostics comes in. The diagnostic test takes a matter of minutes and we have the information that we need to repair your automobile. As we mentioned above, this reduces the time it takes us to diagnose the problem and, as such, reduces your labor costs. If you have a dashboard warning light that is illuminated on the dashboard, call us today to schedule a diagnostic test.