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With our fast paced society forcing us to rely on personal vehicles daily in order to get to our jobs, social events, and take care of our families, it is important to maintain your vehicle as best as possible. When we start to notice issues with our cars, making time to get it checked out and fixed as soon as possible could save you from it developing into a bigger problem down the road. It is important to be as prepared as possible before you take your vehicle to your mechanic because the better you explain the symptoms your car is exhibiting, the faster they will be able to pinpoint the problem and fix it. Follow a few of these tips when explaining your car problems to your mechanic!

Pay Attention

It is important to pay close attention to any changes to your vehicle as they happen. The way symptoms progress could be very telling for your mechanic and could be the thing that helps them uncover the issue. There are so many different mechanical parts to your vehicle, each one having a different function, and there are different noises that are omitted when parts start to fail. If you start to notice these physical changes in your vehicle, knowing what the sound is like, what the car feels like, and where the sounds are coming from can help guide your mechanic in diagnosing the problem.

Know the Language

Communicating with your mechanic using the words and phrases that properly describe symptoms can be very useful in helping them diagnose your vehicle. Forbes created a master list of the most common car symptoms in auto mechanic lingo to help guide you in pinpointing your vehicle’s issues. As you start to notice any of these symptoms, take notes so that you communicate everything to your mechanic in a complete and clear fashion!

  • Backfire: A gunshot-like sound that comes from the engine or tailpipe.
  • Bottoming: Excessive noise or harshness that’s usually felt through the steering wheel or passenger compartment when going over bumps.
  • Bucking: This is felt when the engine hesitates or the transmission slips as it changes gears and the vehicle lurches.
  • Dieseling: What occurs when an engine continues to burn fuel and runs briefly after the car has been switched off.
  • Hesitation: A brief loss of power upon acceleration.
  • Knocking: Also known as “detonation,” this is a rapid rattling that’s heard upon acceleration.
  • Misfire: Hesitation that occurs when fuel in one or more of an engine’s cylinders fails to ignite properly.
  • Shimmy: A side-to-side motion that can be felt through the tires and/or steering wheel.
  • Sluggish: How a car feels when it’s not accelerating smoothly or strongly enough.
  • Surge: A sudden, usually upward, change in the engine’s speed

Let your Mechanic Work their Magic!

Because you have taken all the right steps in paying attention to your vehicle, bringing it in at the early stages, and describing the symptoms in a clear manner, your mechanic will likely be able to get to work in order to get your vehicle back in tip top shape in no time!

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