If you are reading this it is because you are probably looking online for an answer to your car questions. First, we need to establish that there are only two kinds of automobiles
that have ever been manufactured in the entire world...the kind that are broken, and the kind that are going to break. Everyone that has ever owned an automobile has experienced some type of trouble with his or her car.
The modern automobile is probably the single most sophisticated and complex thing available to the general public. To understand them, you need to not only understand the basics of how mechanical things work, but you must also understand a considerable amount of computer technology, electronics, advanced electrical diagnosis and repair, hydraulics, upholstery, metal and plastic fabrication or repair, welding and several other things. You have to be able to figure out what is causing a noise or a vibration. You must have a working knowledge of how all of the many complex systems in an automobile works. You also have to understand that there are systems within
the major systems and how to eliminate possible causes of a problem in a timely
manner. (Poor time + mistakes = money lost!)
Car owners get really upset when they have car problems and they always
want them to go away. They never want to have to pay
to get their car fixed. This is understandable. Owning a car is expensive enough with car payments, insurance, licensing fees, fuel and scheduled maintenance. So here they are paying the big bucks for transportation so they can get to work and try to earn a decent living, and the [blankety-blank] thing decides that it is time to break down and eat up more
of their money! Welcome to the wonderful world of vehicle ownership!
Then there is the problem with people calling themselves car "experts". Some actually are, some wish they were, and some don't know the difference. (These are the REALLY
dangerous ones!) My experience has shown me that this happens in the "cyber world" even more than in the "real world". The only supervision for a so-called "expert" in the cyber world (myself included) is the person asking the question. The sad part about that scenario is that the reason the question is being asked in the first place is because the asker doesn't know the answer. (Is that like grading on a curve?) There is no shop manager to censor or validate what the person is saying to the "customer". In most online auto forums, as long as there is no abusive language involved, the "expert" can say pretty much anything they want to the "asker". Please note that I am NOT
exempting myself...even this article is an example of one of those "anythings"!
The main difference is experience
. There are those that strive to give just as good an answer to the "free" questions as they do the "pay" questions. These are the guys that are really interested in helping
There are several
of them on this site
(if you can find them).Here's what you can expect:
As a general rule, the online "experts" are not very likely to LIE
to you...not even the bad ones. You can pretty well expect that they believe that what they are telling you is the truth. There is no reason to lie, so it is probably not going to happen unless someone is just getting a kick out of being a joker.2.
You can expect
the expert to answer your question as you asked it
. The expert may not fully understand what you are talking about. If you did not ask a complete, detailed question, do not
expect a complete, detailed answer.
Many of the experts will have to ask questions of you to get a better understanding of your situation. Do not
expect them to automatically understand what you are saying if you didn't say it. Also, do not
expect them to know exactly
what is wrong with your car based on your original question. Depending on how your question is worded and how the expert read or understood it, he or she might know, and then again maybe not. Be ready to work with
You can expect
an expert to ask you to give him vehicle information if you did not include it in your question. It is necessary to know the year, make, model, engine size
and (possibly) what type of transmission
your vehicle is equipped with. Without this information, it is impossible
to look up accurate repair information for your vehicle.4.
You can expect
an expert with the VERY BEST
credentials to be an EXPERT
, not a mind-reader or miracle worker.
Even experts have to perform testing and diagnosis to find the cause of a problem. If an expert is telling you that some kind of test needs to be done before he or she can answer your question, this does not make them incompetent. This simply means that they want to help you find the cause of your problem and get it repaired without wasting your money by "guessing
You can expect
an expert to ask YOU
to do some testing and diagnostics and report back
to him or her. Remember...an online expert does not have access to the vehicle
. It is hard enough to figure out what is wrong with a car when you can see it, feel it, and perform the tests yourself. This means that YOU
have to do it. Don't
expect an expert to automatically tell you exactly
what is causing your problem without you having to do anything or provide feedback to the expert. In most cases, this is just simply not going to happen. Even the BEST of the BEST experts cannot fix most car problems without some type of testing being performed. 6.
You can expect
an online expert to do the best that they know how
to do. Experts are not superhuman. Some are just better or more experienced than others. All but a very few of them have the very best intentions - even if they seem to give you an answer that has little or nothing to do with the problem you are having. It may be because of a misunderstanding of the question, or
it could be that the expert does not really know the answer, but is trying to help anyway. It is human nature to want
With all of that said:
Welcome to FixYa! I hope I can help you.- dttech
ASE Certified Master Automobile Technician
36+ years of experience in the auto repair industryDon't just take my word for it!
....Check out my profile and see what others on FixYa have to say about my "expertise".