Electrical Systems Diagnostics

Today’s vehicles are rolling computers, filled with microprocessors and sensors, in addition to the traditional 12 volt electrical accessories. Most mechanical functions are now dependent on electrical components.

Electrical systems are now more complicated, but more reliable and easier to diagnose and remedy with the proper equipment.

Starting / Ignition problems – Not being able to get your vehicle started is of course one of the most frustrating situations a driver can experience. Battery, ignition coil and starter problems all have ties to your vehicles electrical system.

Secondary Systems – finding an issue with some of your vehicles external can be a huge inconvenience. Windows that don’t roll down, headlights that wont function or windshield wipers not activating can put a damper on an otherwise enjoyable drive.

In-Dash Electronics and Computers –  When sizing up your car’s infotainment system, as a test you can run through common functions, like setting up a Bluetooth connection, tuning in a radio station, setting and accessing presets, adjusting the cabin temperature, and operating any web apps, if available.  Today’s vehicles may have touch screen GPS, Bluetooth, in-car Wi-Fi, video backup cameras, etc. Repairing components is not always possible, because sometimes the failure is catastrophic.

ECU/ECM Units – Engines are managed by microprocessor, resulting in better gas mileage and start ups. However these units sometimes go bad. If you suspect that the electronic control unit in your vehicle is damaged, or is going bad, you should immediately take your vehicle to the nearest dealership, repair shop or service center.

ABS System – ABS has become pretty much standard equipment on most vehicles. The ABS computer does a power-on self test every time you cycle the ignition. If it finds it’s lacking data, or a hydraulic pump or valve isn’t responding, it illuminates the ABS warning light on the dash. ABS relies on a properly operating conventional brake system. If the ABS packs up, you should still have normal, unassisted braking, so it’s safe to continue your journey.

Wiring Harness – the mass of wires that goes along the length and width of your vehicle rarely experience issues as they are meant to last the life of the vehicle. But from time to time, shorts or wiring failures can make it necessary to go in and replace a wire or two.

At Escondido Auto Tech, we have a full line of manufacturer certified diagnostic tools. The tools, scanners and equipment are the same or better than those used in dealership service departments. Schedule an electrical inspection at Escondido Auto Tech by calling us at (760)745-4454.