How to Document Your Car Problems


As mechanics, we hear all sorts of descriptions about odd car problems. Most of the time, these are descriptive enough that we can troubleshoot and pin point exactly what’s happening. Other times, it takes a little bit more digging.

Your car is important to you. To help you get in, out, and back on the road again fast, here are a few tips for using your sense to help document what’s going on with your car. With these in mind, you’ll help us get to the root of the problem faster.

Listen Up!

Does something sound a little bit “off?” You’re used to the way your car runs, so you’re more in tune with odd noises than you might think. If something sounds different than normal, chances are there could be a problem that needs to be addressed.

Write down the strange sound in detail. Where is it coming from? Are there any feelings associated with the sound, such as a shaky steering wheel? Make a note of it so that you’re sure to remember when describing it to one of our mechanics.

Look Around!

Some of the most major car problems and reasons for engine failure come from fluid leaks. Not all fluids look the same. To give you the best diagnosis, we need to know exactly what you’re seeing. Is the fluid dark and slimy? Or is it colorful, such as blue or pink? Take a picture of what you’re seeing in your carport or driveway so that we can see exactly what you’re seeing.

Do a Sniff Test

Does something smell a little bit off? Unusual odors can come from a variety of places. Take note of the specific type of odor you smell. Is it smoky? Sweet? Putrid? Let us know! We might not be able to smell it after you bring your car in so we want as much detail as possible.

Timing Matters

The timing of the symptoms your car is experiencing matters too. Take note about when you start to hear or smell something a little bit odd. Is it right after you start your engine, while you’re driving or when you’re braking? Paint the full picture so that we have the most accurate information to work with while diagnosing your car’s problems.

Once You’re In the Shop

Once you’re in our shop, give us the full rundown of what you heard, saw, and smelled. Then, let us get to work. Resist the urge to self-diagnose. You might miss something critical that could cost you more money (and frustration) in the long run.

With that said, it is important that you stay involved and ask us any questions about concerns you might have. This will help you feel more confident about the service you receive, so that you can drive away happy.

Stop by today – no appointment needed!

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