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It came out from under the dash


kenk

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Years ago when I  was very young my father who was not a mechanic but a fairly good handy man, as he built his own club basement fixed a problem on his old American Motors Rambler,that allowed him to drive the car, until it could be properly repaired. How did he know what to do?

The problem was the ignition switch which on those cars was prone to going bad. When it went bad it would keep the starter motor engaged and as you know it, if left running while the engine was running, it would burn up the starter motor in short order.

I can remember my father reaching underneath the dash, and low and behold, not even looking he pulled out this green wire which apparently came off the ignition switch. It must of not been on tight and it was a spade type of termination, because if just came off without any tools!

It was the starter solenoid feed wire. That wire was connected to the part of the ignition switch that apparently shorted out and was constantly applying 12 volts to the starter solenoid. The starter stopped spinning and he had found a way to temporary control the starter by placing a jumper wire between the wire he removed and the terminal it came off of  on the back of the starter switch, until he had the switch replaced. At least he could drive it then.

Was it just plain dumb luck that he happened to pull the right wire off the starter switch? I never asked him.      I guess back then I just didn't have the interest in how things got fixed. But to me it was like a magic trick. That's probably why I remember the story today!

under the dash.JPG

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

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      It always amazes me when I hear about a technician who quits one repair shop to go work at another shop for less money. I know you have heard of this too, and you’ve probably asked yourself, “Can this be true? And Why?” The answer rests within the culture of the company. More specifically, the boss, manager, or a toxic work environment literally pushed the technician out the door.
      While money and benefits tend to attract people to a company, it won’t keep them there. When a technician begins to look over the fence for greener grass, that is usually a sign that something is wrong within the workplace. It also means that his or her heart is probably already gone. If the issue is not resolved, no amount of money will keep that technician for the long term. The heart is always the first to leave. The last thing that leaves is the technician’s toolbox.
      Shop owners: Focus more on employee retention than acquisition. This is not to say that you should not be constantly recruiting. You should. What it does means is that once you hire someone, your job isn’t over, that’s when it begins. Get to know your technicians. Build strong relationships. Have frequent one-on-ones. Engage in meaningful conversation. Find what truly motivates your technicians. You may be surprised that while money is a motivator, it’s usually not the prime motivator.
      One last thing; the cost of technician turnover can be financially devastating. It also affects shop morale. Do all you can to create a workplace where technicians feel they are respected, recognized, and know that their work contributes to the overall success of the company. This will lead to improved morale and team spirit. Remember, when you see a technician’s toolbox rolling out of the bay on its way to another shop, the heart was most likely gone long before that.
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