Some Albuquerque motorists wonder why Dearholt Auto Care and other Albuquerque auto repair shops charge a fee for diagnostic services.
Think about it: When you hire a local Corrales HVAC technician to check out a problem with your air conditioner you’ll probably pay a diagnostic fee. When you visit your Albuquerque doctor for a health problem, you pay the physician to diagnose the ailment and of course for the tests that go along with it.
So receiving a diagnostic charge at Dearholt Auto Care for a tricky automotive problem shouldn’t be a surprise. In the Corrales area, automotive diagnostics can cover quite a range. If you hear a noise in your pickup brakes when you slow down in rush-hour traffic on a busy NM interstate, you pull off the next off-ramp and take a quick visual check. That is usually enough to know what needs to be done. If you’re having an intermittent problem with your pickup engine, however, Dearholt Auto Care diagnosis may be much more involved.
Much of the Corrales car owners’s confusion comes when the problem involves the check engine light. The check engine light comes on when the engine management computer has sensed a problem.
There’s a common misconception among Albuquerque, Kirtland Afb, and Rio Rancho drivers that the trouble code tells the Dearholt Auto Care technician exactly what’s wrong. They wonder why there is a diagnostic charge – because the scanner quickly gave the diagnosis.
In reality, it is not that easy and straightforward. The computer monitors many sensors throughout the vehicle. When one of these sensors has a reading that’s out of parameters, the computer will record a trouble code and turn on the check engine light.
The pickup computer’s trouble code just tells the Dearholt Auto Care technician what engine parameter is out of range – not what’s causing it. The technician needs to determine the underlying problem that’s causing the malfunction.
There are many problems that could cause a troublesome sensor reading for Dearholt Auto Care customers. The Dearholt Auto Care service advisor makes a list of the most likely causes and begins tracking down the source of the problem. This takes time.
Corrales service centers subscribe to databases that document possible causes for all the possible trouble codes. The databases outline procedures for confirming a diagnosis and provide the documented repair. These critical databases are specific to each vehicle and engine combination.
Some diagnoses are quick and easy. Others are more involved, time-consuming, and difficult. Of course Dearholt Auto Care wants to figure out what’s wrong with your pickup and get you back on the road as quickly as possible.
Your Well Trained Technician At Dearholt Auto Care
Posted on June 17,15 by truck2
When your pickup has a problem, or just needs some routine service, you might get a little nervous. Your car’s so important to your life in Albuquerque, you need to back on the road as soon as possible – with the problem fixed right the first time.
If you’ve ever checked into some of the technician training Dearholt Auto Care professionals receive, you may be surprised at how much specialized knowledge and skill goes into diagnosing and repairing a modern car. For example: Today there are four cylinder engines that generate more power than the 1980s-era V-8’s. I mean a new V-6 Toyota Camry could beat Sonny Crocket’s Ferrari in a race to sixty.
Our engines are more and more powerful and at the same time their fuel economy keeps inching up – even with steep Kirtland Afb gas prices. They are also amazingly reliable: Kudos to the automotive engineers at the leading auto makers. But the advances come at the price of simplicity. The modern cars Kirtland Afb drivers drive around NM expressways are so much more complex from a mechanical standpoint that it makes your head spin – not to mention the electronics.
Some pickups have several networked computers controlling most of the engine functions and many other vehicle operations as well. Kirtland Afb motorists take all of this sophistication for granted – but somebody has to fix it when it breaks. It’s a real challenge for Albuquerque Dearholt Auto Care technicians to keep up, but we work hard to stay ahead of the technology. It requires a high level of commitment on the part of the technicians and the Kirtland Afb service centers as well.
Dearholt Auto Care technicians receive training through a combination of formal classroom training, training provided at Dearholt Auto Care by parts and equipment manufacturers, on-line courses and home study courses.
In addition to the expensive training, there’s the financial commitment for Dearholt Auto Care to purchase the diagnostic and repair tools.
There are many independent certifications available at Dearholt Auto Care all the way up to Master Technician. The ability to repair your pickup requires a strong combination of training and resources. No one can know everything, so Kirtland Afb auto service centers subscribe to data services, technical libraries and even on-line communities that can help them when they run into a difficult problem.
It’s like those medical diagnosis shows on TV. Here are the symptoms – what’s the diagnosis and treatment? Diagnosis is every bit as much an art as a science. At Dearholt Auto Care, we want everything to be simple, straightforward and inexpensive – but sometimes it just isn’t.
The next time you bring us your pickup, don’t worry. You’re in good hands at Dearholt Auto Care.
On Board Diagnostics For Your pickup
Posted on November 20,14 by truck2
Make an appointment with Dearholt Auto Care to have your on board diagnostics analyzed. 7201 Wyoming NE Albuquerque, NM 87109 505.857.0868
Today we’re going to talk about on-board diagnostics and the questions we hear from folks around Albuquerque NM who need answers about diagnostic services. They want to know what diagnostics are, what’s involved and what the benefits are. They really want to understand the value of diagnostic scans by a trained technician in Albuquerque NM.
These are valid concerns. If you don’t understand something it’s really hard to know its value. Let’s start with some history.
Since 1996, all cars and light trucks in Albuquerque NM have been required to use a standardized diagnostic system to help repair technicians determine what’s wrong with your vehicle. The diagnostic system works with the vehicle’s Engine Control Module – the computer that controls many engine functions.
The computer monitors dozens of components and processes. Depending on what the sensors read, the computer will make adjustments to compensate for conditions and minor problems. When there is a condition that it can’t adjust for, the computer will turn on the check engine light.
It is also called the ‘service engine soon’ light on some vehicles. The warning light signals you to get into your Albuquerque NM service center so that the trouble code can be read and the problem can be fixed. Your service center will have a scan tool and powerful software that will help the technician diagnose the problem.
If you’ve searched for check engine light on the internet, you may have seen that you can buy an inexpensive scanner or go to an auto parts store to have the trouble code read to tell you exactly what’s wrong.
That’s a common myth. The code itself doesn’t tell you what’s broken. It starts you looking in the right place. It tells you what engine parameter is out of range – but it won’t tell you what’s wrong or how to fix it.
Let’s say you think your daughter has a fever. You take her temperature and it reads one 102 degrees. You’ve confirmed a fever, but you don’t know what’s causing it. Is it a 24 hour flu, an infection, appendicitis or leukemia? A fever is a symptom of all of these medical problems, but it takes a skilled physician’s examination and additional diagnostic tests to find out what is actually causing the fever.
An example of a trouble code could be: P0133, which reads ‘Bank 1 sensor 1 circuit slow response’. This means that the front oxygen sensor has a slow response time to changes in the air-fuel mix. If that’s all you knew about cars, you would think your oxygen sensor was broken and would replace it. Now, it could be the oxygen sensor – but it could also be a bad or contaminated airflow sensor, exhaust leak, electrical problem, an intake manifold leak or any of a number of other things.
You can imagine a lot of oxygen sensors have been replaced because of that code. So the on-board diagnostics point the way to where the trouble lies, but it takes some skill and high-tech equipment to actually pinpoint the problem. The cheap scan tools that a consumer can buy do not have the ability to retrieve some of the operating history that’s stored in the engine control computer. That history’s very helpful in diagnosing the problem. Service centers like Dearholt Auto Care invest a lot of money in high-end diagnostic tools to help solve the mystery and get you back on the road as soon as possible without replacing a lot of parts that don’t need replacing.
So, on-board diagnostics provide a powerful starting place for a highly-trained, well-equipped technician to get to the bottom of your problem. When your check engine light comes on, get it checked at Dearholt Auto Care. If the light burns steady – don’t panic. Get in to Dearholt Auto Care soon to have the engine scanned. A flashing check engine light means that there is a severe engine problem. Get in as soon as you can – waiting too long can lead to very expensive damage.
And try to not drive at high speed or tow or haul heavy loads with a flashing check engine light.
What Albuquerque Automotive Service Consumers Should Know
Posted on January 10,14 by truck2
There are some things Corrales consumers should know about Albuquerque automotive service and repair. First and foremost, Dearholt Auto Care cares about you and your family’s safety. And we really appreciate your business. Dearholt Auto Care in Albuquerque wants to build a trusting relationship that becomes the foundation for a mutually beneficial experience for years to come.
Building on that foundation, there are some things that would help you understand the auto service and repair business better. First, it can be really hard to fix cars. The days of shade tree mechanics are long gone. The majority of automotive systems are computerized. It takes a lot of training and very expensive equipment to diagnose and repair modern vehicles. The technicians that work for Dearholt Auto Care need extensive computer training – not just how to run the diagnostic systems, but also searching for the right parts, networking with other technicians to help them with a difficult problem and pulling together a job order that makes sure that each step of the process is addressed.
The threshold for getting started as a technician gets higher all the time and there is a huge commitment to on-going training every year. This training takes time and money. It contributes to business overhead. The average Albuquerque or Kirtland Afb driver may not realize the business and environmental regulations Dearholt Auto Care must comply with. Of course that costs money too. Like any business, overhead is a big factor.
When you go into a Corrales restaurant you don’t value the meal by what the food would cost at the grocery store. The restaurant has rent, wages, insurance, taxes, utilities, professional fees, equipment, supplies – you get the picture. The restaurant has to charge enough to not only pay for the ingredients, but for all these other things as well while making enough profit to remain in business. If you value the meal and are satisfied with your dining experience, you’ll come back and tell your friends.
It’s the same for Dearholt Auto Care. The value of its service is not the cost of the parts they replace, but in your satisfaction with the results. If they deliver a good product at a fair price, Albuquerque customers are happy to see them succeed as a NM automotive business.
Contact Dearholt Auto Care to learn more about our extensive auto service training. You can find us at: 7201 Wyoming NE Albuquerque, NM 87109 Or call us at 505.857.0868
Your Albuquerque service center loves to see its customers whenever they come in, but they would much rather see them three or four times a year for routine maintenance than once a year on a tow truck. They want to work together with you to avoid breakdowns. Tell your Corrales area friends and family to go in for their scheduled maintenance too. That lowers the service center’s marketing costs and helps keep its labor rates down. That’s good for everyone.
Dearholt Auto Care appreciates this great review of automotive service from AutoNetTV.
Albuquerque Customer Detective Work
Posted on November 27,13 by truck2
One might say the most challenging part of being an automotive service technician at Dearholt Auto Care in Albuquerque NM is diagnosing a problem before it can be fixed.
Cars are made up of a bunch of complex systems. There usually could be a number of reasons for any given symptom. So it’s challenging to track down the actual cause of the problem. And it can be frustrating for the vehicle owner because it can take time and money to get to the bottom of a problem. If it’s not something obvious, it’s easy for the customer to focus on the fixing and not the diagnosing.
Let us introduce you to something we’ll call Customer Detective Work – that is helping your Albuquerque NM technician find clues to what’s wrong.
We start with the detective basics: What, Where and When. Play along with me. You come in to Dearholt Auto Care and your car is making a funny sound.
Q: Where’s the sound?
A: Around the right front wheel.
Q: What kind of sound?
A: Kind of a clunk, clunk sound.
Q: When do you hear the sound?
A: When I turn and accelerate.
Q: Right and left? Forwards and back?…
Do you see where we’re going? You’re gathering additional information to help your Albuquerque NM technician know where to start. Based on your car and the tech’s experience, he’ll know where to look and can start with the obvious suspects.
You can see how that would be more helpful than dropping the car off with a note that says “making a funny noise”.
When you think you need to bring a vehicle in, make some notes about the problem. Rather than just saying “it’s leaking”, tell the tech the color of the fluid, and approximately where under the car you see the puddle.
Things like ‘the car is stalling or sputtering’ are often very hard to diagnose because they’re intermittent. They may not happen every time you drive and usually aren’t happening when you actually bring the car in. So, it is a big help for you to describe what’s happening in as much detail as possible.
Your Albuquerque NM technician at Dearholt Auto Care will need to be able to duplicate the problem if possible so he needs to know details, like ‘it stalls after it’s been driven for about 20 minutes and I go over 50 miles an hour’.
If the tech can experience the problem personally, he’s better able to make a diagnosis and repair. And, then test to see if the repair solved the problem.
Questions To Ask Your Albuquerque Service Advisor
Posted on June 27,13 by truck2
We find that a lot of Albuquerque service and repair at Dearholt Auto Care are a little tentative when they talk with their automotive advisors. They want to ask questions, but don’t want to be embarrassed or to seem pushy. Cars are very complicated and there’s more to know about them than most of us have the time to learn. Maybe it’s because cars have become so much more reliable that the average person just doesn’t need to know as much to keep their vehicle on the road.
You know, your local hospital has a Patient’s Bill of Rights that they post throughout the hospital. We think our Albuquerque automotive service customers also have a right to ask any question they need to understand what is wrong with their car and what it will take to fix it. They need to feel free to ask the cost and benefits of recommended services. And they certainly have a right to understand the financial end of the transaction.
It’s all about the communication. It’s a little harder when you’re trying to find the right service center in Albuquerque. But once you’ve developed a relationship, the communication should come easier.
What are some of the barriers to communication? Well, let’s go back to the medical example. When your doctor’s explaining something to you, it’s something that she understands very well and is very familiar with. So she may use jargon you don’t understand or that you don’t have the education and training that’s foundational to understanding what she’s trying to explain.
So you fall behind and get frustrated.
It can be the same with your Albuquerque automotive service advisors. Most of them are very busy trying to service and fix cars to get their customers back on the road. So, just ask when you feel you need more information.
Financial related issues seem to be most frustrating to customers. If you’re not sure, ask what the payment policies are. For example, there’s a big difference between giving your car a quick once over and doing a thorough inspection. Diagnosing a problem may take quite a while. Make sure you know what’s done as a courtesy and what has a fee. Remember, you still have to pay for the office visit even if the doctor says you only have a cold.
Communication is a two way street. If you have some real budget concerns, ask your Albuquerque service advisor what he can do. He can give you priorities and options. He can tell you what needs to be taken care of right away for safety or financial reasons. Then you can work out a plan for when to get the rest done. He can also help you with options on the parts. The preference is to always use a high-quality part with a reputation for reliability. But if money is real tight, he might be able to find a rebuilt part or a used part. He should tell you the difference in the guarantee for the part so you can make a good decision.
Ask about warranties for parts and labor. Be sure to get all the paperwork you need to make a possible claim in the future. Your service center and its technicians stand behind their work and want you to understand precisely what that means.
Be sure to ask for and keep a detailed explanation of all the work that’s done on your vehicle. These records will help you keep track of service, warranties and document the good care your vehicle has received when the time comes to sell it.
Call Dearholt Auto Care to make an appointment. 7201 Wyoming NE Albuquerque, NM 87109 505.857.0868
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