Car Electronic Diagnosis | EFI; ABS; ALB; Anti-Lock; ECU Electronic Control
Vehicle diagnostic testing is the only accurate method for Technicians to figure out what is wrong with your vehicle. Some shops offer a free diagnostic test when you bring your car in for routine maintenance, and these tests can help detect a problem before it spirals into a major headache. Beware, Scantool diagnostics is incomplete and somewhat unreliable. Discovering the real fault the first time is what we do at Highway Auto Electrics Rockhampton.
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How Does Diagnostic Testing Work?.
When your grandpa took his car into the shop, he likely took it to a dealer that specialized in a certain brand or vehicle type. Back in the day, mechanics had to figure out what was wrong with the vehicle based on an inspection, the sounds the car was making, or what color liquid was dripping from the bottom. It took a skilled mechanic to correctly identify a complex problem.
Today, Technicians have it easier because a computer can help diagnose the problem, but they have to be more skilled at servicing a wider array of problems on a bigger selection of cars. It takes lots of training and hands on experience to be good at this so beware of shopfront folk with a scantool in hand and a shop full of spare parts they love to sell you.
To figure out what’s wrong with your car, a Technician will analise your vehicle’s Electronic Control Unit (ECU). ECUs are present in all modern cars, and it makes it much easier to determine what’s wrong. When your ECU detects a problem, it turns on a light on your dashboard. Oftentimes this is the Check Engine light, but it can also turn on other lights, like your ABS or Oil lights. When you bring your car into the shop, a Technician can download the error report that caused the light to turn on in the first place. The Technician then compares the report to the manufacturer’s error log to determine the issue.
At first glance the above is substantively correct, however it is not that simple because historically many expensive electronic components have been replaced unnecessarily because accurate automotive diagnostics only works in that simple form so long as the Technician can recognise Ghost Fault Readings and allow for them in his/her final summation of the problem. Highway Auto Diagnostics Technicians have extensive skills in this area so your vehicle’s diagnosis will be accurate and correct.
ECU Diagnosis and Health Check Report.
Have you ever pondered why modern cars seem to run so smoothly in all driving conditions?
Modern vehicles are controlled by many sophisticated on-board computers are more commonly known in the industry as Electronic Control Modules (ECMs) or Electronic Control Units (ECUs). In fact, some cars have over 20 different control units that are constantly reading, exchanging and manipulating data between themselves. When a module senses a problem with an electronic command, it will often override the issue by altering the parameters of the pre-programmed data without “advising” you through lights on the dash.
ECUs make these improvement processes automatically and in real time. In a closed-loop system, different sensors accumulate data from the network and send data to actuators that provide the interventions required to achieve the best outcome for the driving conditions and service item condition it has to deal with. The output of sensors tell the system what the car is doing and the contribution of new inputs back to these sensors from the ECU makes the critical amendments.
Some ECU tasks in your car they assist in the functioning of:
- Traction Control
- Park Assist
- Supplemental Restraint Systems (Airbags)
- Automatic Climate Control
- Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems
- Cruise Control
- The Anti-lock Brake System Control
- Engine Control
- Transmission Control
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Benefits: ECUs Health Check & Report.
Electronic Systems Scanned – codes recorded, cleared, re-checked & report provided. Performing an ECU health check regularly ensures your vehicle is running to the standards the manufacturer intended. The benefit is reduced running costs via early intervention.
Benefits: Detected issues can be remedied by following our Fault to Resolution Protocol.
Our ECUs Heath Check also enables us to record your vehicle’s DNA, potentially limiting future diagnostics procedures. Our reports will advise what needs to be Investigated, what can be monitored and the clearing of historical events that can affect data parameters.
These days, ABS, or ALB (the two common acronyms for anti-lock brakes) is offered as standard equipment on all new cars and many light and heavy commercials.
How it works
• When braking under adverse conditions, such as slippery roads, the amount of grip between the tyre and road surface may deminish, allowing wheels to lock and skid. When this occurs, braking efficiency is very much reduced, the car may spin out of control and the driver is likely to lose the ability to steer it accurately.
• An ABS equipped vehicle has a conventional hydraulic brake system, with some additional components, including wheel speed sensors, an electronic control unit (computer) and a hydraulic modulator unit.
• The wheel speed sensors constantly send information to the computer, enabling it to detect impending lock-up of any or all wheels during braking. When lock-up is imminent, the computer instructs the hydraulic modulator to apply and release the brakes on the wheel or wheels that are locking up, at a rate up to 16 times per second.
• In this way the car’s braking and directional stability is maintained and the driver retains the ability to steer the car to avoid a potential collision.
• At all other times the brakes work like a normal braking system, only entering ABS mode when necessary, with vehicle speeds above about 6kph.
Brake pedal kick back
• During ABS brake operation the brake pedal may pulse or “kick back” under the foot, and thumping noises from the pedal area, and vibration in the vehicle body and steering may be evident. These are all normal characteristics, though many drivers may find these sensations a little alarming at first.
• Under ABS braking conditions it is very important to maintain pressure on the brake pedal, to allow the system to take control. The driver must concentrate on steering to avoid hazards.
Brake Assist and other enhancements
• ABS systems often incorporate other functions. These include:
• Brake Assist, which detects a rapid or emergency brake application and applies maximum brake force, regardless of the actual pedal pressure applied by the driver.
• Hill Hold prevents the vehicle rolling backwards during hill starts
• Traction Control prevents the drive wheels from spinning on low traction surfaces
• Dynamic Stability Control reduces the risk of loss of control during manoeuvres.
• Hill Descent Control is used to maintain traction and control vehicle speed during off road hill descents
Examples of vehicles we service
● Isuzu Ute
● Land Rover
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For any of the above services or for any automotive repairs, Mechanical, Air-conditioning, Auto electrical, Cruise control, Caravan services, Bosch, Delkor and Century Batteries.
You will speak with Cathy or Steve who will talk you through any automotive service matters; they are well-informed and patient professionals (07) 4926 1303.
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Car diagnostics, servicing & repairs Rockhampton.
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