Remember when all you really needed to fix your own truck was a little bit of mechanical inclination, a small tool box and that dogeared repair manual? Man, do I miss those days sometimes! Nowadays its OBDII, fuel trim, O2 sensors, evaporative emissions and allot of other jargon that can make your eyes cross. Lets cover some the the “must have” items you should have in your arsenal! The actual tools that reside in your box are not what I’m referring to. Those tools are the easy part. I’m referring to those specialty items that make diagnosing and repairing your vehicle a whole lot easier.
– A quality Scan Tool, not just a “code reader”, it should be able to give you basic data stream information about your vehicle. This is critical when trying to diagnose a problem or “check engine light” issue.
– A quality DVOM (multimeter). Another critical item for testing the electrical components of your truck
– Internet access! Yes, you heard it right. And heres why:
1. Say your check engine light comes on, you scan your truck and come up with a P0301 code. Simply “google” that puppy and you’ve got like 25 search pages of free help!
2. And on any number of those search pages you’ll find general and specific vehicle forums to join for free! Simply sign up and post your questions. You’ll get helpful tips from professionals and fellow forum members.
3. This is for you hardcore DIYer’s, A number of the professional vehicle repair data base companies are now offering a DIY version of their services on line. For a small monthly fee, usually a “per vehicle” charge, you have access to their database full of information, repair procedures, code descriptions, trouble shooting guides and wiring diagrams!
Bear in mind some of these items can be quite expensive. But there are some really good deals out there, you just have to shop around! And be wary of used equipment, make sure the seller has a good return policy if your shopping on the internet. Repairing your own vehicle can be a daunting task! I hope some of these tips and suggestions help to ease the frustration when problems arise.
Until next time,