Computers diagnose automobile difficulties

Car trouble spells stress, and not knowing what’s wrong with your car can ultimately add to the stress of the breakdown.
It’s easy to tell when you have a flat tire, but not so easy when the fuel filter is clogged, or the brake fluid is low. For many years, those with automobiles were forced to take their cars to the local mechanic for diagnosing, then fixing problems.
Today’s automobiles are essentially equipped with on-board computers. When a problem arises, an engine light usually comes on to alert the driver that something is not right with the car. When the light is yellow, the problem is usually minor. When the light starts flashing yellow, the problem is getting worse, and when the light turns red, the problem is severe and needs immediate attention.
Prior to the 1990’s, cars were not equipped with computers. You knew your car had a problem only when the car stopped running. Without proper diagnostic tools, car drivers were subject to the answers their local mechanics gave them.
When the online computers tell drivers they have a problem, users typically take their car to the same auto mechanic. Instead of getting under the hood and diagnosing the problem, these mechanics now hook the vehicle to the shop’s computer and typically run a complete diagnostic on the car. Today’s mechanical computers are quick, thorough and typically dead on when determining what’s wrong with your car.
There are some problems with car’s being equipped with computers. Sometimes the car’s computer will diagnose a problem that is not severe, something like the gas cap having too much dirt around it. Instead of the vehicle owner having the opportunity to correct the problem themselves, they must take the car to a mechanic to investigate.
Some mechanics offer free diagnostic analysis, while some charge for even the simplest of diagnostic issues.

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