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Tech Stuff

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Diagnosing and Servicing Gasoline Direct Injection Systems

For those of you who can recall when the manufacturers first came out with the port fuel injected systems, you will remember it wasn’t long before we saw some predictable problems surface on these vehicles, such as olefin and diolefin buildup on the pintle area of the injector causing a restriction.

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Towing the Line

Quite often, vehicles enter your shop which feature a trailer hitch (bumper hitch, frame-mounted hitch receiver). This should alert you to that fact that the customer may, on occasion, be using their vehicle to tow a recreational or commercial trailer.

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TPMS Diagnosis and Service Tips from Parts & Equipment Manufacturers

Likely the leading cause of system failures lies with the condition of the sensor batteries. Sensor batteries are expected to last around six to 10 years, with newer sensors lasting longer due to battery improvements.

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There’s No Stopping the Electric Parking Brake

The advent of electronic parking brake (EPB) systems offers advanced technology but can pose challenges for the service technician. This article explains the current systems and provides insight regarding understanding and troubleshooting these non-mechanical approaches.

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Coil-On-Plug Technology and Diagnostics Tips

Coil-on-plug, or COP, features an individual coil dedicated at each cylinder, with the COP connected directly to the spark plug, eliminating the need for plug wires. Due to variances in COP design among auto makers, spark control, troubleshooting and diagnostics can vary. This article is intended to provide education relative to COP, along with tips and precautions regarding testing and diagnosing engine misfire issues.

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Random Rants on Current Issues

Do you fear the engine cover? Of course not. You work on late model vehicles every day, and you’re accustomed to popping them off in order to gain access to a variety of vacuum lines, spark plugs, sensors, etc.

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Electrical Troubleshooting Made Easy

As a mobile tech, when I get called by a shop to diagnose or troubleshoot a problem vehicle, I never really know what I will be up against. All I do know is that I will have to be on the top of my game.

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Fuel Trim: Finding a Vacuum Leak and Performance Issues Using Fuel Trim Data

A customer doesn’t generally care about whether their vehicle is in fuel control, but they certainly care if it’s not running correctly or the service engine soon (SES) light is illuminated. Accurate fuel control is needed to maintain the correct air-fuel ratio (AFR) that is supplied to the engine’s combustion chambers for ignition.

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7th Annual ‘Tips From Techs’

Our industry is made up of dedicated people who share a passion for all things automotive. Technicians who service vehicles on a daily basis routinely discover solutions for various repairs that go beyond what a service manual provides.

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Shop Referrals: A Shop’s Got to Know its Limitations

Who among us doesn’t smile when we watch the classic 1973 movie “Magnum Force,” as Clint Eastwood, playing his iconic character Detective Harry Callahan, walks slowly away as the corrupt Lieutenant Neil Briggs’ (Hal Holbrook) car explodes and he mutters his infamous line, “A man’s got to know his limitations”?

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