Our car maintenance tips and tricks
Jul 16

Mobile Mechanic Car Diagnostic Tests – What Can They Tell Us?

One of the most useful things that a mobile mechanic can do for you is perform a car diagnostic on your vehicle. Here at Smart Mechanics, we serve drivers around Stansted, Bishops Stortford, Saffron Walden and other nearby areas with quality mobile mechanic services, including diagnostics. When you see one of our mechanics approach your car, lift the bonnet or get inside and connect an intriguing handheld computer complete with stylus pen, there must be a thousand questions running through your mind — How does the test work? What do they look for? What can that computer tell you?

In this article, we’ll be looking in detail especially at that final question — What can a car diagnostics test tell a mobile mechanic? — so you can understand the value and what’s going on when one of our mechanics stops by your home or office to check what’s wrong with your vehicle.

Background: The Advent of Modern Car Diagnostics

In the modern age, cars started to be built not purely from mechanical components, but increasingly with computerised ones. Whereas in the past a mechanic would have to scan through every mechanical part to find a problem before, the computerized parts can be connected to a diagnostics computer, scanned and the faults pinpointed quickly and efficiently. Those with the correct knowhow and equipment can even perform a diagnostics test at home.

The vast majority of us, however, have neither the time nor inclination, which is why it’s a good thing we have experienced and skilled mobile mechanics in and around Stansted who can do this work for us.

What Can the Mobile Mechanics Check for in a Car Diagnostic?

Once the mobile mechanic connects their computer to the driver’s car in Stansted, Sawbridgeworth, Braintree or elsewhere, they can gain immediate data on a number of systems, including:

  • Transmission
  • Oil tank
  • Petrol tank
  • Exhaust system
  • And more

To use the car’s engine as a more detailed example, you can gain a wealth of information with the push of a button; work that may have previously taken a mechanic many hours to complete. For example, you can use a diagnostics computer to learn about ignition problems, temperature of the air and coolant in the engine, position of the camshaft and throttle opening, and whether or not (and how much) contaminant build-up you have in the engine.

Knowing this tells the mechanic instantly about what needs to be done. More importantly, it shows the mechanic where maintenance priorities need to be placed. Information is fed into the computer using various codes (ranging from P0100 to P1899) that the mobile mechanics here at Smart have all been trained to understand.

First, there’s a letter: The letters indicate where the problem part is, so for example if it starts with ‘P’ then it’s something wrong with the powertrain. If it starts with ‘C’ then it’s a chassis issues, and so on — ‘B’ for body, and ‘U’ for a problem that’s classed as ‘undefined.

Second, there is a 0: This is a kind of placeholder in the code, for which most manufacturers use ‘0’ (though some use ‘1’).

Third, there is a number to show where the problem is: Each number will pertain to a specific part of whatever system was named in the first letter. So, if the start was ‘P0’ and the next number was a 2, for example, ‘P02’ would mean that there is something wrong with the injector circuit. Similarly, a ‘3’ would mean an ignition problem or misfiring engine

Finally, the fourth and fifth numbers give further precision: The final two numbers work to add further precision so your mobile mechanic can get right to the most specific component that appears to be malfunctioning or otherwise in need of care.

The Benefits of Using Car Diagnostics

Such technology brings with it huge advantages, especially when you put it together with the already beneficial approach of calling a mobile mechanic instead of visiting a garage.

1. Speeds up the work of the mobile mechanic

When a mobile mechanic visits your home or office, they are incentivised to work efficiently and effectively. A diagnostics device means the mechanic can rapidly determine not only which area of the car is having the real problem, but even which exact component is most likely to be the cause of the malaise.

2. Precision and speed means less cost to you

When you require mechanics services in Stansted, the traditional approach was always to drop off the car at the mechanic’s garage and wait for news. A mobile mechanic armed with proper diagnostics tools can be at your home in Stansted, Bishops Stortford, Saffron Walden or elsewhere and give you the lowdown of the car’s trouble in minutes. Since this means problems are identified faster and with more precision, less labour is involved and fewer trial and error fixes, and that ultimately brings the cost of the repairs down.

3. You finally get answers to the “check engine” light

If you’ve ever been persistently irritated by the “check engine” light, constantly wondering what it’s warning you about (if it’s not simply malfunctioning, then a quick diagnostics test carried out by a trained mechanic will tell you. If it’s a genuine problem, you get it fixed before it becomes more serious. If it’s just a malfunction, however, then you can get that fixed and avoid a troublesome (and fruitless) visit to a garage.

Diagnostics – One Weapon Among Many in a Mobile Mechanic’s Arsenal

Here at Smart Mechanics, our mobile mechanics service covering Stansted and surrounding areas includes car diagnostics using the latest and greatest equipment available. Let us make your life easier by bringing our diagnostics and other mechanic services to your home, office or at the roadside. We are here for you when you need us, and we’ll quickly get to the bottom of what’s ailing your car! Call today to learn more.

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(We cannot provide any warranty on parts supplied by the customer.)