A car is always fun and enjoyable to drive when everything is working well but the moment it becomes faulty, it can become your worst nightmare. As such, you as a car owner need to learn how to diagnose problems in your vehicle and solve them quickly before they worsen. The question to ask then is, ‘How do I diagnose my car problems? Do I need a specific tool to use for diagnosis?
The answer to that is a big yes. You actually need specific tools. Here’s an overview of a few of them:
1. A Vacuum Pump, Pressure Tester Kit, And A Bleeder
A lot of parts of your car’s engine depend on vacuum pressures in order to function properly, more so the engine cylinders. As such, a vacuum pump, pressure tester kit, and a bleeder will come in handy in testing the vacuum lines to diagnose whether there is a leak in one of the lines. You can also use these tools to check on the overall performance of your engine.
To check whether there is a leak using these tools, you’ll need to spray a small amount of carb cleaner on places where you suspect that there’s a leak and then connect the vacuum pump onto the line. If a leak is detected, the testing kit’s gauge will flutter.
2. A Fuel Pressure Gauge
If your car isn’t getting enough power while driving it, the problem could likely be that the fuel system has a problem. To clarify whether indeed the fuel system is faulty, you can use a tool known as a fuel pressure gauge.
To use this tool, you’ll first need to connect it to the fuel system and then monitor the gauge’s reading which will inform you whether the fuel system is faulty.
3. A Circuit Testing Light
Your vehicle has an electrical system in it. It is wired to allow certain features such as the car lights to work properly. For one reason or the other, however, the electricals of your car may fall out of place resulting in some of these features not functioning at all.
A circuit testing light will come in handy in detecting a wiring fault in your car and diagnosing any existing electrical problem. To use it, ground one of the insulated wire leads of the light and place the other insulated lead on a circuit that is receiving power. If the light turns on, it’s an indicator that the connection is good and vice versa.
4. On-Board Diagnostics (OBD-2) Code Reader
This is one very important tool that every car owner needs to have in their possession. It comes in handy when you want to diagnose multiple problems in your car. It is used when the check engine light starts illuminating on the dashboard. Most people today use the second generation type known as the OBD-2.
When your car detects an error in any of its parts, the sensors in it send a fault code that you can read and interpret using an OBD-2 code reader. Once it’s attached to your car, the code reader highlights the active fault codes which are generic, meaning that you can key in the codes online and find out what they mean.
Each code denotes a specific underlying problem in the car that needs to be corrected. Knowing how to do on board diagnostics is super important for you as a car owner.