Quantcast
Jump to content


    • You can post now and register later. Already registered? sign in now to post with your account.
    • ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

        Only 75 emoji are allowed.

      ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

      ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

      ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


      Once you submit your question, a new topic will be created for you in our forums. Our moderators may move your topic to a more suitable forum category if one exists. Members will see your topic and be able to respond to your question.

    • This will not be shown to other users.
Gonzo

Article: Shift Happens - Diagnostics, diagnostics, diagnostics

Recommended Posts

Shift Happens

Jo was a new customer referred by an old-time regular. Her little KIA had a transmission problem that seemed to be getting the best of the transmission shop. The story goes that the SUV was constantly in limp mode, and would never shift properly… ever. As it always seems to be the case when a simple problem can’t be solved simply, somebody started the diagnostics off in the wrong direction. Little did I know this was a simple problem…. But, as I see it, each and every type of diagnostic work that you do requires a certain step by step procedure that you must follow. Miss a step, or completely overlook a step, usually means you’re going to miss that simple problem all together. This was no exception.

From what information I could gather the person who diagnosed it at the transmission shop wasn’t the same person who installed it. So after the tech put the last bolt in the transmission, he set the car out front, and told the front office, “Got the transmission in that KIA.” The front office considered it done, and the call went out for Jo to pick it up. She didn’t make it around the block before she was back at the front counter in a “not-so” pleasant mood. You can just imagine the situation at the counter… not pleasant I’m sure. After some deliberation, and very little diagnostics the transmission shop came up with the conclusion that it must be a bad transmission. Luckily, Jo’s ride that had brought her there was still in the parking lot, so she left the KIA for them to re-do the whole job again.

A week later, it was supposedly done. This time a different tech had installed the second transmission. Unfortunately, he made the same mistake as the first tech. When Jo came to pick up her car the shop owner took her for a ride to be sure that the repairs were made to her satisfaction. It was a short drive… This time, the owner said he was going to pay for the transmission, and would even purchase one from the dealership just to be sure it wasn’t their mistake in rebuilding it. But even the dealer transmission failed to shift properly. The tranny shop was at a loss, they decided to make a few calls for some help, and that’s when my phone rang.

Now, I’m not one to diagnose anything over the phone. I just don’t think it’s a smart way of taking care of such problems, because you never quite know what you’re getting into. But the tranny shop owner sounded desperate, and now the repair costs were coming out of his pocket. From his frantic explanations of no codes, no shift, and no idea of the problem, he kind of put me on the spot … so … I suggested a computer. Heck, why not… ya’ changed the tranny 3 times for Pete’s sake, obviously that ain’t’ it. I probably shouldn’t have done that, but I think he wanted to try and save as much money as possible without resorting to taking it to another shop.

Well, a new TCM didn’t work either…. Now, the car is finally coming my way. Jo was a little unsure whether or not there was anyone out there who could find the problem, but her friend told her that it couldn’t hurt to let me see what I could do for her. I’ll give it a try.

When the car showed up at the shop I took it around the block once to verify the condition, and then put it up on the lift. While it was on the lift I decided to drop it into gear and check it against the scanner. To my surprise, it shifted perfectly. I’m not kidding… absolutely perfect. I dropped it back on the ground, and went for a ride again. I didn’t even make it around the first corner… stuck in limp mode just as it was before, this dang thing can’t pull itself out of a pot hole.

Back up on the lift, and wouldn’t ya know it, shifts perfectly… AGAIN! What’s the deal here? I did it several times, just so I could be sure of the results I was getting. After a few trips I checked the wiring to the transmission while it was on the ground. Oh, oh, the main ground to the TCM wasn’t there. How in the world was it there when it was in the air? AH HA! It’s moving the wire! Yes, it was moving the wire alright, and a few more than just the TCM ground lead. The locator page showed the TCM ground wire was bundled with several other ground leads that were all attached to the main chassis ground… which wasn’t attached to a thing, but was dangling by the battery box.

Turns out the whole problem started when she had her battery changed at a department store repair shop, and they didn’t have the right size to fit the car. They disconnected the chassis ground wire, so the taller battery would fit.

When I told Jo what I found, the two of us pieced together the how and why it happened. Her only comment was, “Well, shift happens”.

All said and done with, the transmission shop paid for the entire repair, and gave her back what she spent with them. Everyone involved was glad to have the problem solved, and the car back on the road as good as new. I like this gal, she’s become a regular at the shop these days. What a card! Always has some sarcastic comment for me, but at the same time a very understanding nature and takes life in stride. I’d love to have a couple of dozen customers just like her.

As she always tells me… “If you can’t live on the bright side of life… start polishing the dull one.”




Click here to view the article

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


We allow visitors to read the first post of each topic. To read this post, please login or register for a membership. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We allow visitors to read the first post of each topic. To read this post, please login or register for a membership. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We allow visitors to read the first post of each topic. To read this post, please login or register for a membership. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We allow visitors to read the first post of each topic. To read this post, please login or register for a membership. 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Similar Topics

    • By Joe Marconi
      With so many uncertainties these days, there is one strategy that we can all do that will help to smooth out our overall sales and customer visits throughout the year.   Make sure the experience is always amazing during the entire customer visit. And perform the car delivery that gives the customer a reason to return.
      Here's the key part before any customer leaves your shop: Make sure you discuss their next service appointment and any other future recommendation.  Let them know that they will get a reminder by either post card, email or text.  BUT, there is one more thing you can do to boost your customer retention, get permission from your customer to call them a week prior to their next appointment.  Yes, give them a phone call.  Try it, and give it time to work.
      Oh....won't work, you're thinking??? Well, here's list of businesses that do it: Dentists, doctors, nail salons, hair dressers, chimney cleaners, boiler service companies and Successful Auto Repair shops. 
    • By Elite Worldwide Inc.
      Keep Your Shop's Summer Momentum Going! 
      Elite's Supercharge Your Shop, a series of 4 live online courses for shop owners, starts Sept 14th! 
      Learn to master your shop's numbers, recruit the top techs & advisors, maximize employee productivity, fill up your bays with your ideal customers and more!
      These live online courses will be taught by industry superstars Joe Marconi and Kevin Vaught, who have both experienced extraordinary success as shop owners, so everything you'll learn has been proven to generate extraordinary real world results!
       You have the option to either enroll in the whole Supercharge Your Shop course series, or pick and choose the individual courses that will help your shop the most. Here's the course schedule:
      Sept 14-15 - Mastering Your Shop's Numbers and Cost Control
      Sept 16-17 - Hiring America's Top Techs & Advisors
      Sept 21-22 - Maximizing Employee Morale, Productivity and Profits
      Sept 23-24 - Filling Up Your Service Bays with the Ideal Customers
      To enroll in the complete series of these 4 live online courses, just visit our Supercharge Your Shop Page to reserve one of our last openings!
       
       
    • By Joe Marconi
      We, automotive shop owners of America,  must take the opportunity of a lifetime and turn it into a bunch of success stories. What opportunity?  Look around you. The world is in turmoil. COVID-19, social unrest, uncertainty about the presidential election, the economy, how are we going to get out kids back to school, on and on and on.
      While the world is spiraling out of control, we have the power to make big changes to our auto repair shops.  And it can all be positive! 
      The Opportunity...
      First, the average age of a car in the U.S. is about 12 years old, attaining well over 200k on the clock. 
      Second, Uber, taxis and limo companies are suffering.  Guess why?  
      Third, the motoring public in the foreseeable future will be traveling by car, taking road trips like they have never did before.
      Fourth, the roads are packed with motor vehicles, as more and more people prefer their own car as their primary means of transportation. 
      Fifth, as the cars get older and older, more of them will be out of factory warranty.
      Sixth, independent auto repair shops have a vast amount of training, resources and replacement parts.
      Seventh,  the overwhelming majority of cars being build and sold today are still internal combustion engine powered cars. If you factor in the expected average age of car these days, we can safely bet that those gas engine cars being sold today will still be on the road in 2033 and beyond! 
      Eight, You need more?  That's not enough! 
      Get your plan in place.  Get your prices in line with making a profit. Don't give anything away anymore (I am mostly referring to checking, testing, diags of any sort!) Offer world class customer service. Be a leader of your employees.  Show the world what you are made of! 
    • By Joe Marconi
      Most of you probably already know what I am about to say:  The Service Advisor position is the most crucial position in the shop.  I know, I know, what about the mechanical work done by the techs?  Well, that's important too, of course. 
      For the most part, customers spend their hard-earned money and most of time don't really know or see what was done to their car.  Let's face it, the customer can't see the water pump or T-belt. And most of the time, the customer does not feel any difference with the car as they drive out of your parking lot. 
      What the customer does see (or experience) is how she was treated.  And that makes all the difference in the world.
      Plus, great service advisors also motivate the technicians, because great advisors are also great leaders of people. 
      Think about this...Six months from now, your customer will not remember the fuel injection relay or the mass air sensor that was replaced....but she WILL remember how she was treated. 
      And trust me, that OE-quality fuel injection relay install by a certified A-level Master tech using Snap On tools and a Launch Scanner IS NOT the reason WHY your customers return to you....She returns because of the level of service your provide.
       
    • By DiscoDave
      I am helping a growing business to be more efficient.  As part of this, I am looking at a service to maintain our general hardware and supplies.  The shop needs a manager as the owner is too involved with the shop - and rightly so as he is highly respected in his arena.  That's another discussion.
      As he moved into a larger facility and hired more people. I'm working on efficiencies.  The current goal is to have common hardware an supplies on hand, always.  I am looking for a service to handle this.  I have spoken with Rogo, Fastenal and Kimball Midwest.   Any other suggestions?  Runs to the hardware store are costly...
      TIA,
      Dave


  • AutoShopOwner Sponsors



×
×
  • Create New...