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Mechanics Right To Repair


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...and to add that the work performed by the non dealer is not covered by warranty if other than OEM parts are used or cause the damage.

You are speaking of repair work, which is a different thing from maintenance.

You'd have to be a certified idiot to pay for repair work from a non-dealer when the same repair is available for free on warranty from a dealer.

The only 'parts' used during specified maintenance are fluids and filters. Virtually all aftermarket fluids and filters meet manufacturers specs, I say again that there is no legal or actual requirement to take your car to a dealer for maintenance, and pay $900 for 'maintenance' that takes the shop floorsweeper 90 minutes and $30 in fluids to do wrong.

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It is some of the best troubleshooting I have come across. The knowledge on these sites blows me away.

Agreed. And.... there is always several somebodys who have complete manuals and schematics on tap, and will gladly post any tech data required.

The auto companies absolutely hate these sites, for a couple of reasons. Prospective owners flock to these sites and research actual repair isssues, instead of listening to wild claims of durability from salespeople.

And they are great if you are a bit handy- any repair needed will have somebody mechanically skilled to walk a poster through any repair.

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BC ... good stuff. I have this elderly Dutch lass living next door, we talk computers now and then .. I am always impressed by old folks who dig new tech. She is scanning her old photos into the PC and getting them on a family tree website.

And today with this Internet thing, there is little you can't find good information on. Just got to invest some time into it.

She invited me over for drinks one time .... me being 37, and she asks, well, come on over and you can meet my daughter sometime ..... then realizing she is like 80, I could be looking at a 50to 60 year old daughter ... lol

I see much rapage when it comes to PC repair. I have saved myself, and many friends and family much money when it comes to PC repair. Computers are the new cars !!!! But now double screwed because computers are just a part of the car !!!

But not everyone has the knack for computers, or cars. I have the knack for the computers. I don't have the knack .. or patience for auto repair. Or even maintenance. But being able to at least bring the car in for regular maintenance when needed, should not give anyone else the opportunity to take me for a ride.

I don't want to do it myself, I will gladly pay someone a fair price for the work.

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Let's face it, when the automakers, start to put codes in, it was to get those cars back into THEIR garages and not let people go else where. Well, not all of us can pay the 80-90 Hrly rates! If I can get the car serviced as good as the BIG dealer can, else where, why should I go to dealer?

They do like you to come back to their shop and in all honesty, with some vehicles, some things are probably better done by dealers but that isn't the real reason. Todays emissions and safety standards couldn't be achieved without extensive use of computers. Not only do todays engines emit far less and consume less fuel than those in the past, they put out far more power for their size as well. One nice thing about computers is they can be used to troubleshoot themselves and the rest of the vehicle. Another nice thing about them is todays vehicles are a lot more reliable than those of 40 years ago, they had to be easy to fix. One of the toughest things to troubleshoot in any vehicle can be an intermittent electrical problem due to something like a poor connection, worn wire or bad ground because computers can't help you find those. Five other guys who have had the same problem with the same kind of car can be a big help however.

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Disagree.

Manufacturers of any equipment have the right to not allow access to their proprietary software, they paid the money to develop it and it belongs to them under intellectual copyright. If that means you have to take your Volvo(a prime culprit btw) to the Volvo dealer to get thoroughly cheated for repairs- then so be it.

Of course, ifyour brand is labelled as 'expensive to fix', the maker will eventually have trouble selling them.

Comsumers are cluing into the reality that the main sources of income for dealers are financing and service/repairs. selling the vehicles does not make a lot, especially now.

I sort of agree, but not entirely.

Your free exchange of ideas principles rely on the assumption that consumers have perfect knowledge of the market.

It is a reasonable assumption that consumers research a big ticket expense such as an auto before buying it.

If Volvo pays R&D money specifically so that they can then make a profit by charging extra for the repairs (which are now easier to fix) then it is fair game. If they intentionally make it impossible to fix the vehicle unless you have the software etc, then they are engaging in a form of anti-competitive behaviour whereby they are creating a monopoly (they are the only ones who can repair the autos) for the sole purpose of gouging.

For other products however, the same can not be said.

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I may have missed it somewhere. Is there right to repair legislation or similar legislation on the table in the US???

The so called "right to repair" has been an issue in many US states for many years. California and Federal emissions standards have made the point moot in most cases.

A recent example of proposed state legislation:

http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2009/01/21/378453.html

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Concur.

I had a faulty heater blower where it would only work on 'high' , or #4, and while that is fine in Jan and Feb, it gets a bit stupid the rest of the year. But I left it.

Until one day decided to google auto repair forums. Holy shite, what a relief, every single problem I had was there in black and white with repair estimates, whether it should be done, recall notices that were not announced , just tons fo great things.

Resulted in me getting 2 warranty jobs done and getting through the BS I was gettin from the service advisor. Now these forums are the first place to look.

But I wont change my oil, nor any other part, save for maybe...maybe...the wipers. Thats what mechanics are for.

Changing oil isn't too bad, about half an hour. greasing the front end isn't bad, what I find annoying is that there are no grease fittings on the U-Joints on the drive shaft.

I prefer working on big machinery myself, cars and trucks are far too cramped and tight to work on. Regular maintenance keeps the vehicle working great. However as a vehicle gets miled out there are some things that even maintenance cannot solve. I find that warranties are generally useless as stuff tends to go wrong at about 150,000 klicks and again at just under 300,000.

Changing hydraulic hoses, that's a dirty job.

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It is quite foolish to get general maintenance done at the dealer if you have a trusted corner garage. The cost of dealer work is astronomical compared to the independent. If the independent garage are on the up and up they will inform their customer when repairs are under warranty,recalls and also hidden warranties. Often I have seen where dealers have not told customers of problems occurring like head gaskets until warranties have either timed out or mileaged out. Not all dealers of course practice this dishonourable practice. The biggest rip off for consumers is the selling of rust proofing by dealers. But thats another subject.

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I hope that all parties get behind this Bill. If it needs work, work on it.

http://www.canada.com/reginaleaderpost/new...1f-1ffac48a86cb

Finally a good regulation. I assume the mechanic will still have to pay for the software. If you can't trust GoldmanSachs employess in central banks, you shouldn't really trust large automakers either. Unless.. you are a friend of a friend and just drops his car off at some random out of the way mechanic and can't get it back easily. What a moron.

The software for the mechanic should be like that of computers. You work on cars and you can get a cheaper OEM version of the software. Just like computer. You build computers from scratch and you can buy the OEM OS.

It should be good competitively. Ah, capitalism will solve this.. no way. We don't want competition. We like our junk from too supposed too big to fails.

Edited by Huston
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As soon as copyright law (like the bill introduced by the Conservatives last summer) is created the manufacturers won't have any worries. The bill contained a provision that said it would be illegal to break a digital lock on anything. All the manufacturers would have to do is put a digital lock on the software and this will be a non-issue. Not only will the mechanics be shut out, despite any "right to repair" legislation, they will be violating the criminal code if they manage to work around the lock.

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As soon as copyright law (like the bill introduced by the Conservatives last summer) is created the manufacturers won't have any worries. The bill contained a provision that said it would be illegal to break a digital lock on anything. All the manufacturers would have to do is put a digital lock on the software and this will be a non-issue......

I don't think it will be that simple. The automotive aftermarket has already fought this battle (in court) down to the EEPROM and write-protect level, successfully reverse engineering any such protections. They have been very successful with OBD/OBDII protocols because California and the US EPA have a larger interest in emissions standards performance and maintenance; the American markets drive virtually all product configurations delivered to Canadian consumers as well.

Edited by bush_cheney2004
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I don't think it will be that simple. The automotive aftermarket has already fought this battle (in court) down to the EEPROM and write-protect level, successfully reverse engineering any such protections. They have been very successful with OBD/OBDII protocols because California and the US EPA have a larger interest in emissions standards performance and maintenance; the American markets drive virtually all product configurations delivered to Canadian consumers as well.

No set of digital security devices can stop the breach of coded software locking systems ---- computers are a -push over...as the writer said - reverse engineering takes apart all..not to mention that one human mind has enough power ot overwhelm every computer on earth...sorry - man is god compared to those silly and linear bits and bites.

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I don't think it will be that simple. The automotive aftermarket has already fought this battle (in court) down to the EEPROM and write-protect level, successfully reverse engineering any such protections. They have been very successful with OBD/OBDII protocols because California and the US EPA have a larger interest in emissions standards performance and maintenance; the American markets drive virtually all product configurations delivered to Canadian consumers as well.

"very successful" is a considerable exaggeration.

They have been somewhat successful- hence this legislation which may lower the bar.

But plumping for reverse engineeringt is not the solution at the garage level, independent shops do not employ software engineers searching full time for the codes to your Volvo.

They cannot afford the lawyers either, so sometimes they just cannot fix it.

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"very successful" is a considerable exaggeration.

Not if you are a SEMA member....which by definition laughs at an OEM only mentality.

They have been somewhat successful- hence this legislation which may lower the bar.

But plumping for reverse engineeringt is not the solution at the garage level, independent shops do not employ software engineers searching full time for the codes to your Volvo.

It only takes one industrious hack to find and spread the word. IIRC, the iPhone was "unlocked" in just a few days.

They cannot afford the lawyers either, so sometimes they just cannot fix it.

Some aren't qualified either way....the market will separate contenders from pretenders. There are dealers who also cannot afford to buy or train for "official" OEM diagnostic scan tools.

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Human error will glitch any machine. Perfect example regarding privacy...The former wife - left the phone off the hook and I could hear here new little friend rant like a lunitic...The youngest puts it on speaker phone and we all sat around and gathered intelligence and sized up the intruder that has entered our private realm to disrupt and seduce..Computer security can fall apart just as easily - one pressed or unpressed button and all is unlocked - all the secrets revealed.. :rolleyes:

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If it is so easy to access the codes, then why is the legisaltion required at all?

Because some non-dealer shops and aftermarket vendors want it to be easier than it already is. With the exception of some very specialized onboard applications, there is nothing magic about automotive firmware, ECUs, or other digital hardware. In many cases, the dealer's only corrective action is to R & R (remove and replace) anyway.

My wife's '06 Corolla displayed a CEL/MIL (check engine/ malfunction indicator light) last year so I connected my laptop to the OBDII interface and read the code.....it was a transmission solenoid shift point out-of-range error. Since it was under warranty, it was off to the dealer for them to do the exact same thing with much more expensive (e.g. Rotunda, Fluke, Vetronix, Matco analyzer). The "fix" was to replace the ECU, just like thousands of others reported by Corolla owners on the Web.

Edited by bush_cheney2004
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