Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

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Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

smog frogposter
This post was updated on .
A customer came in today hoping to have us explain what Autozone had "already diagnosed" but he did not understand what the statement read and asked us to tell him how to fix their car. Came up to the front counter with the piece of paper from Autozone with several DTC's, and expected us to troubleshoot his vehicle without paying a dime because he had already done that for free with Autozone. Normally I'd tell them to go back to Autozone and tell them to fix it if they're going to be doing the diagnosis for free but what was really pompous about Autozone is their statement at the top that read:

"Our ASE Certified technicians have determined the cause of the problem to be..."

How can parts stores like Autozone, O'Reileys and other parts stores get away with this? By all means siphon the riffraff, the cheapskates and the bottom feeders by luring them in with the free "fix it finder" and save us the headaches but are you telling us that your parts guy that doesn't know if there's a difference  between a spark plug coming from a carbureted vehicle or a fuel injected vehicle and questions it is ASE certified and is capable of diagnosing emissions related failures?
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Troll
Just hold to your $350 diagnosis fee. Then tell them to go on google, and you tube.
And to try another autozone/O'reilly type for a second FREE diagnosis.
Get them on their way as fast as possible.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Kevin
In reply to this post by smog frogposter
If you do choose to take on clients like this which I never recommend doing, bit if you do then there is no guarantee of repair with someone else doing the diagnostic work. Is the only way to protect your business and reputation 

On Sat, Dec 28, 2019, 9:14 AM smog frogposter [via Stop The Star Program] <[hidden email]> wrote:
A customer came in today hoping to have us explain what Autozone had "already diagnosed" but he did not understand what the statement read and asked us to tell him how to fix their car. Came up to the front counter with the piece of paper from Autozone with several DTC's, and expected us to troubleshoot his vehicle without paying a dime because he had already done that for free with Autozone. Normally I'd tell them to go back to Autozone and tell them to fix it if they're going to be doing the diagnosis for free but what was really pompous about Autozone is their statement at the top that read:

"Our ASE Certified technicians have determined the cause of the problem to be..."

How can parts stores like Autozone, O'Reileys and other parts stores get away with this? By all means siphon the riffraff, the cheapskates and the bottom feeders by luring them in with the free "fix it finder" and save us the headaches but are you telling me that your parts guy that doesn't know if there's a difference and questions between a spark plug coming from a carbureted vehicle or a fuel injected vehicle is ASE certified and is capable of diagnosing emissions related failures?


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NAML
EO/EI/BA certifications ASE Master Certified Chrysler Master Certified Ford Certified Wyotech Graduate Sequoia Institute Graduate 20+ year experience
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

scanner
In reply to this post by smog frogposter
smog frogposter wrote
Came up to the front counter with the piece of paper from Autozone with several DTC's, and expected us to troubleshoot his vehicle without paying a dime because he had already done that for free with Autozone.
I usually tell them I will pull a code for free too, but if they want me to find the cause of their code, it will cost $XXX.00 to determine what is actually wrong.   If what I say falls on deaf ears, then I tell them to GTFOH.   Hopefully under no uncertain terms, they had understood my last statement to them.  

 but what was really pompous about Autozone is their statement at the top that read:

"Our ASE Certified technicians have determined the cause of the problem to be..."

How can parts stores like Autozone, O'Reileys and other parts stores get away with this?
I would bet there MIGHT be an ASE Parts Specialist on premises, but I doubt it.  Here's what a Parts Specialist is supposed to know.  Seems like ASE will do anything to raise revenue.  

https://www.ase.com/MediaLibrary/Images/PDF%20folder/parts_guide.pdf

They aren't exactly L1 certified.  

What Autozone should be recommending to their client is to take their broken vehicle to an ASE shop that employs an A6, A8, L1 certified technician.   It's probably never going to happen.  


Why make it simple, when it will work equally as well complicated.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

805smogtech
In reply to this post by smog frogposter
smog frogposter wrote
A customer came in today hoping to have us explain what Autozone had "already diagnosed" but he did not understand what the statement read and asked us to tell him how to fix their car. Came up to the front counter with the piece of paper from Autozone with several DTC's, and expected us to troubleshoot his vehicle without paying a dime because he had already done that for free with Autozone. Normally I'd tell them to go back to Autozone and tell them to fix it if they're going to be doing the diagnosis for free but what was really pompous about Autozone is their statement at the top that read:

"Our ASE Certified technicians have determined the cause of the problem to be..."

How can parts stores like Autozone, O'Reileys and other parts stores get away with this? By all means siphon the riffraff, the cheapskates and the bottom feeders by luring them in with the free "fix it finder" and save us the headaches but are you telling us that your parts guy that doesn't know if there's a difference  between a spark plug coming from a carbureted vehicle or a fuel injected vehicle and questions it is ASE certified and is capable of diagnosing emissions related failures?
First off, I let them know that the part store didn't "diagnose" anything. All they did was look up a code, and all that code does is basically tell me that there is an issue in that system, that could be mechanical in nature, electrical in nature or fuel related or some combination thereof. We will need to run tests, and we do NOT work for free. I also ask them if they go to the doctors. "Yes". Ok, when you tell him your stomach hurts, does he immediatley know whats wrong? "NO". Does he then run a bunch of tests to diagnose why your stomach hurts? "Yes". Does your doctor work for free? "NO!!!" Ok, so that is basically the same concept. You brought your car to us, and the check engine light is on. We need to do diagnostics to figure out why the light is on and what to do to fix it. The code, (or codes) stored in the PCM memory give us a starting point to base our diagnosis off of, they are not some end all that tells us what to replace, just like a stomach ache can have multiple different causes and the doctor doesn't know the cause until he runs enough tests to determine the cause and find a solution. (Most times, if the customer is sensible, they will then understand the reason why it needs a "diagnosis" even if they aren't too crazy about paying the fee for it. )  

In my experience, most people are under the impression (however wrong it is) that plugging in a scan tool tells you exactly what is wrong with the car and that it tells you exactly what to replace. Or they think that the check engine light is on for the gas cap because that what they "read on the internets".
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

none
This has been going on in the automotive field well before OBDII. People would ask about "The machine that you hook up to the car and it tells you whats wrong with it".

It was a SUN scope they were shown in ads that you still had to know what you were looking at on the ignition pattern and figure out why that one firing line was angling down or maybe the pattern looked fine but the idle vacuum was lower than expected.

 
People are usually shocked when they find out I'm not a very good electrician.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Best Answer I Can Give
 How many NEW guys even know how to hook it up? Plus if they could, would they KNOW what they were looking at?
 Never make fun of the choices your wife makes. You were one of them.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Moderator
Administrator
This post was updated on .
That's like asking how many NEW computer scientists can program in 6502 assembly language.  It's a beautifully nerdy skill, and certainly not hard to learn, but it has no practical main-stream use anymore.

We scrapped our BEAR engine analyzer years ago, because it was just gathering dust.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

SoCalSmogGuy
barrym95838 wrote
It's a beautifully nerdy skill, and certainly not hard to learn, but it has no practical main-stream use anymore.
Exactly
Work Smarter AND Harder
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

805smogtech
When I went through the local community college auto program after high school around 10-13 or so years ago, we had an instructor that had a 2 digit smog number. He has since retired. He was super old school too. Took his electrical class, and was taught how to use a very similar machine. Haven't used one in the field unfortunatley. He also had us tear apart and rebuild carburetors. Which I have also never done in the field. Also taught us how to set points, etc. Although I did at one point in time own an old 64 ford falcon that had points for a bit (until i put a conversion kit on it). it also had a 3 on the tree and a slower than molases in January 6 cylinder 170 or 200 cid engine. I will say that I think at least helps to know even a little about the old stuff, because some of it is still out there. Just smogged a 76 Cadillac Eldorado a few days back.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Moderator
Administrator
This post was updated on .
I had a '65 Falcon 2-door with the straight 6 and the 2 speed Fordomatic.  It was hecka slow, but I liked it because the aerodynamic shape of the body let me drive around in the Summer with the windows down without messing up my long hair too much.

My '62 Ranchero was a 3 on the tree one-barrel 6 cylinder, but now it's a 5 on the floor fuel-injected 4 cylinder, because all of the running gear is from an '85 Ranger.  Maybe it'll see the road again while gasoline is still being sold to the general public ...
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

BlueSky
In reply to this post by none
I liked to play practical jokes on new mechanics at my old shop using this BEAR machine.  There was a condenser tester function on it and you could load up a condenser with voltage.  I would say hey check out this condenser and toss it to the mechanic.  As they caught it and touched wire end and the body of the condenser they would get a real jolt.  
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

Best Answer I Can Give
 Us old school guys KNEW to NEVER just pick up a condenser if that tool was in a shop.
You always grabbed  it by the wire and shorted it out.
 Never make fun of the choices your wife makes. You were one of them.
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Re: Autozone & their diagnosis "fix it finder"

defective
In reply to this post by smog frogposter
Its funny that those "diagnostic" code read print outs also have a list of recommended parts to "fix" your car