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skm last won the day on June 24

skm had the most liked content!

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About skm

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 01/05/1973

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  • Automotive Franchise
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    ase certified master tech, L1 , state inspection license, master emission repair license

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  1. Reflashing

    wheelingauto, I have been in the business for a long time, I am not worried about losing a customer to the dealership. In fact most not all but most people don't like the dealership... Now as far as the wrong diagnosis yes that may be possible, but I am pretty good at what I do and am very certain of a diagnostics before I ever contact a customer. There is far more fear in losing customers to carp shops and street mechanics than to a dealership... As far as the technology side, I keep very up to date on things.. buying equipment and subscriptions to reflash at this time is going to be a waste of money.. Things are going telematic, so there will be no need for reflashing equipment probably sooner than you think...
  2. I see your point and agree to a certain extent.. The thing is I am not trying to train these guys. I have even found problems and scrolled the problem to the top of the scanner on the data or just added in a couple other data reading to the problem and they still can't figure it out. They are older than me and been at it longer than myself.. I have been doing this for 26+ years, but was very young when I got into the business just 17 (kicked out of high school went to LTI) . It seems to be a very common thing that these guys just throw parts at cars hoping to fix them and not doing any testing after the repair to make sure they fixed the problem. Sure back 20+ years ago there wasn't much in the way of diagnostics that needed to be done.. but that is a very very different story now a days.. These are the guys that continue to give good mechanics a bad name, not to mention I have over heard them talking about just plugging their scanner in and they would know the problem.. Well if you can find a scanner like that I would love to have one.. This is part of the reason i think that mechanics are underpaid for what they do.. you get the guys throwing parts guessing etc.. sure why pay a diagnostic for that. But the ones that do it correctly are the ones that suffer..
  3. I am complexed about how many "Mechanics" just don't get it... I work with two guys older than myself, I am no spring chicken but not old either.. One of the guys had a car with a p0171 as most know a very common code lean bank 1. He had replaced the o2 sensors two weeks ago on a Saturday a day I don't work.. The customer came back with the same code IMAGINE THAT ! So they asked me to take a look at it with the other mechanic, I had shown this guy about fuel trims a few weeks ago. I hooked my scanner up looked at 02 data , maf , long and short term fuel trims.. at idle the LTFT was high 19 not high enough to set the code, and the O2 showing what you would think low voltage (lean). I raised the rpms and noticed the maf readings still low and the LTFT rising. At which point I put the car in drive and the LTFT really started to rise at idle and maf stayed low, I raised the rpms the car hesitated and the LTFT kept climbing.. I asked the guy what he thought he had no Idea.. So I told him pop the hood the air induction hose is broken between the maf and the throttle body.. He thought I was joking, He opened the hood and was in shock "how did you know that"? I told him simple I know what I am looking at and how things work, but my question to him was how come he did not know that. He looked like a deer in headlights.. He replaced the induction tube, at which point I hooked the scanner back up to show him that now we can prove our repair was good.. I asked him what he would think would happen he had no Idea. so I pulled up all the same items and told him to watch the LTFT and that it will fall quickly and the O2 would come to life.. Sure enough it did in fact the LTFT went a little negative -5 I asked him why he thought that happened he had no Idea, I explained it had been adding fuel for so long it is probably saturated and there is probably a lot of fuel still in the engine and exhaust manifold.. it would clean out as time goes by but that proves the repair is good. At which point I unplugged the scanner and that was that.. now today same lean code on a different car the guy looked at me I said remember what we did ? He said yea, I went over after about half an hour and he had not figured anything out.. in fact he had all kinds of not needed data up on the scanner.. I shook my head pulled up the fuel trims did a few easy checks noticed that the fuel trims went back in the good range with the rpms raised told him to look for a vac leak . HE found one I showed him the fuel trims again and how it verified the repair was good... He still has no Idea of what we went over! is it me or is there a need for a lot of learning to be done .. do some people just have the knack and others are just destined to be guessers and parts changers?
  4. Reflashing

    if a vehicle needs a reflash or a part is going to need programming and I know it is something I am unable to do I send them to the dealer. I find that being straight up with the customer they will continue to use you for all their needs.. A job lost to the dealer because it may not be cost effective to you may lead to a customer that has more confidence in your for being completely honest with them.. I tell them It is not cost or time effective for me to purchase equipment to do the flashing and as stated above some only take a one time flash screw that up and you have to buy a new module or ecm, easier to let the big guys (dealers) with the money to make those repairs. That way you aren't out money and time , the bottom line is we want to make more money than we spend in a timely manner 😉 I had a Kia forte the other day the bcm was bad (would not release the shift interlock ) I did a quick look through my scanner to see if I could do the programming , but didn't see it.. On some models you can copy the old bcm if you can communicate with it and then install the new one and program. Instead of taking any chances I told the guy the problem he was happy , been several places that installed new brake light switch , new solenoid etc. if they had just done some bidirectional communications and checked some very simple wiring (after removing the center console everything is right there including the bcm) they could of made the correct diagnosis. He paid for the diagnostic time agreed upon when he first brought the car in and said he would like to use me for his other repairs.
  5. it would be nice if we could trade these "bottom draw" obsolete tools in on a new useful one. 🤔 It would make more room for the ones of us who don't have the safety or shelf space for our "plastic container" tools and or old scanners ( I have gotten rid of most just have my otc genisys good for the TPMS stuff )
  6. I can not look at it as a business owner since i am not one, but I can say I think what you are doing is correct.. Giving him a flate rate dollar amount on top of his salary is a good incentive. I think the most important thing is to be honest with him let him know the more he learns the more he can make especially with the flat rate. He needs to know it is a hard job with a huge learning curve that keeps on curving it never ends it does get easier the more you understand but you are always learning in this business. Also let him know that being the best he can being certified etc may help him in the long run. As I stated in my prior post most young ones believe they deserve top pay , but you must prove yourself and it will come (in most cases not so much in mine but that is another story) . The first 3 owners of the shop I am currently at were great like yourself helping me along pushing with incentives etc. The last few owners don't know the business just had money and thought it would be fun to own a station. That being said a good owner with good mechanics of all levels will do just fine and be able to continue into the future as this automotive world becomes more and more complex... All the best to you and your business .
  7. 100% I sit in on the interviews and actually conduct most of it even though I myself am just a Mechanic. But being at the same place for over 26 years I guess I know what it takes .
  8. xrac, I think there are very few that know what hard work is.. As you said they want to be on social media or building super fast computers to play games on. They also think they can do their jobs by using the internet, google, or youtube. It is a totally different generation. The other big problem is they (well almost all of the general public) believe mechanics are rich, so they come in to the job expecting to make a boat load of money.. they don't realize everyone starts at the bottom you don't start at the top . we recently hired an older guy to pick up the slack (small jobs , oil changes, tires , batteries, etc.) during his interview I asked him what he could do he replied everything. So I asked him again what do you know how to do he replied I have been doing this for 24 years . I asked again, I didn't ask how long I asked what can you do he replied I put engines in , transmissions in, I stopped him there ( that is a big red flag when you get an answer like that from a seasoned person that means I can't do any diagnostics etc.) I started to ask him about diagnostics, fuel trims , o2s evap systems etc common stuff he had no idea. He replied well I can call someone or you can help me.. Well I am there to make a living just as you are, I can not make a living for both of us. So we came to an agreement that he would get a 500 dollar salary a week with 40% commission (which I think 40% was too high for his qualifications ) so he can make more money if he works hard.. He agreed well this was on a Friday that Monday he was to start he called and said he had to go to Harbor freight and buy some tools, some crazy story that his tools were in his wife's car an the transmission went out.. Okay well I don't know any decent mechanic that can keep his tools in the trunk of a honda civic. anyway he said he would come in tuesday. Tuesday around 10:30 he was suppose to be there at 8 he shows up and wants to argue about his pay he needs at least 1000 a week salary . Ha no way not to mention you can't even show up on the first day then given another chance you come in two and a half hours late and want to argue a higher pay.. Needless to say he was sent packing not heard from again.
  9. Great to hear Gonzo ! I need to do some more walking myself.. You know the story with my wife, after that life change I lost about 35lbs and have kept it off... haven't had a drink in over 4 years and haven't had a smoke in over 3 years.. After a while the diet change and lifestyle change just becomes normal.. Keep up the good work!
  10. Great article.. I am that guy with my health, If I had followed up with my sinus issues I wouldn't of had to have such a big surgery to remove the tumor and most of my sinus on one side.. but even that has not pushed me enough to get my PM done.. It is funny that after what you went through I decided to get my annual PM done , well the funny part is it should of been done 2.5 years ago I have been putting it off, ahhh I feel okay etc.... so July 5th I have my annual PM visit.. I don't know why guys are so pig headed with this stuff we just are guess we need to change that.
  11. Did you have a wrist band on that they scanned before giving you anything? When my wife was in hospital that is what they did. Everything even a new pillow they scanned her then a code in a book.. Amazing .. Well glad you are doing better Keep up the good work !
  12. The $19.95 Oil Change Offer

    okay, okay lol, everyone has their own opinion like they say opinions are like assholes everyone has one.. LOL.. but that being said this is just like anything else in the world.. it is divided. There are democrats, republicans etc.. some like Trump some don't. Some people like a nice T-bone steak some like a nice salad, just because someones opinion is not the same as someone else's it doesn't mean you or they are wrong.. for anything ever to take place people need to work together. Debating things is usually how things get hashed out. Although hashing things out we need to understand someone else's opinion and listen to them with a level head so we can come to a bipartisan conclusion ..
  13. The $19.95 Oil Change Offer

    I am with you completely on this, I know I have heard over and over when I bring this up about how they don't want the government controlling more of their lives "they already control enough" well sometimes their are reasons for this.. If there were no rules there would be total chaos, well sort of how it is in a lot of the automotive industry.. Just like you hear people saying they don't like that the government is watching them or has the ability to listen to their phone calls. Hey if you are not doing anything wrong why the hell do you care.. They can follow me listen to my conversations I don't care it would probably bore them LOL.. Then yes they are always worried about how it is going to be funded, well they are already dipping into the state inspections where I live.. they are electronic every one you do you pay 3 bucks to the state. Which we incorporated into the cost of the inspections. I mean do you really think that it would be enough to damage your business ? I don't not to mention a level playing field, getting rid of all the hack shops would only mean more customers for your shop so it is one of those things where does the pros out weight the cons. Well I think that it would in the long run
  14. I need a Gonzo near me LOL.. actually Im not to sure it is a venture I want to take on anymore.. Too much change and not in the right direction.
  15. It looks by the "likes" that the man himself has made a return to the forum , Welcome back Gonzo !