Services > Article

On Board Diagnostics for Sarnia Motorists

Thursday 01 September 2011

Some Sarnia vehicle owners wonder why LaSalle Auto Centre and other Sarnia auto repair shops charge a fee for vehicle diagnostics.

Receiving a diagnostic charge at LaSalle Auto Centre for a tricky automotive problem shouldn't be a surprise. In the Sarnia area, automotive diagnostics can cover quite a range. If you hear a noise in your vehicle brakes when you slow down in rush-hour traffic on a busy Ontario road, you pull off at the next off-ramp and take a quick visual check. That is usually enough to know what needs to be done. If you're having an intermittent problem with your vehicle engine, however, a LaSalle Auto Centre diagnosis may be much more involved.

Much of the Sarnia driver's confusion comes when the problem involves the Check Engine light. The Check Engine light comes on when the engine management computer has sensed a problem.

There's a common misconception among Ontario drivers that the trouble code tells the LaSalle Auto Centre technician exactly what's wrong. They wonder why there is a diagnostic charge because the scanner quickly gave the diagnosis.

In reality, it is not that easy and straightforward. The computer monitors many sensors throughout the vehicle. When one of these sensors has a reading that's out of parameters, the computer will record a trouble code and turn on the Check Engine light.

The vehicle computer's trouble code just tells the LaSalle Auto Centre technician what engine parameter is out of range, not what's causing it. The technician needs to determine the underlying problem that's causing the malfunction.

There are many problems that could cause a troublesome sensor reading for LaSalle Auto Centre customers. The service advisor makes a list of the most likely causes and begins tracking down the source of the problem. This takes time.

Sarnia service centers subscribe to databases that document possible causes for all the possible trouble codes. The databases outline procedures for confirming a diagnosis and provide the documented repair. These  databases are specific to each vehicle and engine combination.

Some diagnoses are quick and easy. Others are more involved, time-consuming and difficult. Of course LaSalle Auto Centre wants to figure out what's wrong with your vehicle and get you back on the road as quickly as possible.

LaSalle Auto Centre
214 Lasalle Road
Sarnia , Ontario N7T 7H5
519-337-7533