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Tech Stuff

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Oxygen Sensor Heaters: How do you Know if that Heater Fault Code is Real?

When the check engine light is on and the scan tool displays oxygen sensor codes, you already suspect that the real problem might be something other than the oxygen sensor. When the codes indicate a problem with the oxygen sensor heater, that narrows the possibilities quite a bit.

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Doing the Right Thing

Years ago, I wrote an article for our sister publication Modern Tire Dealer. I had the opportunity to spend a bit of time with the folks who ran a community-help program that was conducted by a tire dealer in cooperation with a local radio station, all based in a western New York state metropolitan area. The program was called “Captain Friendly.”

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4WD Shifts Without Command

This bulletin applies to 2004-2011 Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon 4WD vehicles. If you have a customer that complains about an intermittent unrequested transfer case mode shift, scan for DTCs and correct as needed.

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Tool Review – GTE MasterPry Pry Tools

Today's vehicles feature a lot of plastic, in terms of panels and snap-in clips. Popping panels from interiors or trying to remove push-pin plastic clips that retain headliners, seals, etc., can be dicey when using metal tools such as screwdrivers.

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Wheels and NVH -- How to make a vehicle ride like new again

When driving a new vehicle, one of the first things you notice is how smoothly it rides. That new-car ride is mostly the result of a tremendous amount of engineering that goes into eliminating noise, vibration and harshness, otherwise known as “NVH.” Of course, as that smoothness gradually fades, most people assume it’s just a consequence of the car’s age and mileage.

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Mazda Skyactiv Technology -- What it is, and What it Has Meant to Engine Packages

I am sure that by now almost all of us have seen or heard the advertising of Mazda’s Skyactiv technology, but how many of us actually understand what it means? If you’re a full-time Mazda tech or just a Mazda aficionado, then this will just be a lot of review for you. But for the average tech who doesn’t specialize in just Mazda’s latest vehicles, I want to explain what is meant by Skyactiv technology, and what changes it has meant to the engine packages.

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Tool Review: MAHLE TechPRO

There are scan tools, and then there are scan tools, and then there is MAHLE’s TechPRO. When the company’s ads tout the “game changer” aspect of this system, they were not blowing smoke or employing over-stated hype.

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Tips From Techs: Our Annual Advice Column Written By Technicians On the Front Lines

If you have a Chrysler PT Cruiser that has a code for insufficient EGR flow (P0401), don’t automatically assume that you’ll need to replace the entire EGR assembly.

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Professionalism Trumps Stupid

This is a tale of stupidity and frustration, followed by eventual success, thanks to a few heroes of the automotive service industry.

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Tool Review: OTC Aluminum Jack and Stands Package

Need a low-profile floor jack for those occasions where you need to jack a vehicle with minimal ground clearance? There’s no need to spend ridiculous dollars for a pro race jack or to waste money on an inexpensive jack of low quality.

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