WHAT IS DIAGNOSTICS?When we refer to diagnostics, we're generally speaking of troubleshooting an electrical component in the vehicle such as a sensor failure for the engine management system that would turn on the "Check Engine" light. But realistically a diagnostic could be anything where a specialized piece of equipment is needed to pinpoint test a component in any system in your vehicle.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A DIAGNOSTIC AND AN INSPECTION?Inspections are typically a visual looking over of a mechanical system in your vehicle such as brake pads, shocks and struts or preventative maintenance items. Problems with these types of items can usually be determined by simply looking at them and don't require any special equipment to test them.
WHY DO DIAGNOSTICS COST SO MUCH?There are a number of reasons. Aside from the high cost of the testing equipment and the extra training needed by technicians to be able to perform that kind of work, the biggest cost factor when speaking of diagnostics is time. For example: When diagnosing a "Check Engine" light problem, it generally takes between an hour and a half and two hours for a technician to pull the trouble codes from the engine computer and perform the associated test procedures for the components relating to the code.
While many people think that repair shops have a piece of equipment that plugs into the vehicle and simply tells you what's wrong, that just isn't the case. The most any piece of diagnostic equipment can do is read a trouble code from a system control module and display it with a brief description of what the code refers to along with live sensor data so that the service technician can see what the control module sees from the individual components within the system. From that point the service technician will look up the diagnostic procedure in our automotive database and perform individual tests on the related components as per the diagnostic flow charts.
DOES COURTESY TIRE PERFORM DIAGNOSTICS?At Courtesy Tire, our technicians have the ability to run a diagnostic on almost all major vehicle systems. From time to time we will come accross a system that the vehicle manufacturer does not release the component testing information required to complete the diagnosis, but those cases are rare. We also have the most up to date equipment available and the skills to make sure we solve whatever problem your vehicle may be having.