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  • Writer's pictureJames Stephenson

I'm a terrible listener

I'm a terrible listener, everyone knows it too. Not in a way where I don't want to listen to what people have to say. But more in the type of way where I don't listen to advice all the time. Mainly because I don't always have time to follow through. Then when I see someone else ignore good advice, I'm baffled.

For instance, a new customer came into us about 18 months ago concerned that his Check Engine Light kept going on and off. The car was also running a little funny with a noticeable loss of power and Bad Gas Mileage. Our Technicians first road tested the vehicle to verify his concern, then they scanned all of the systems in the vehicle to pull any data that we could use to pinpoint the issue. We eventually found that the vehicle had a faulty O2 sensor (Oxygen Sensor).

This sensor plays a key role in helping the engine computer determine how much fuel the engine should be using. This car has 4 of these sensors. A single faulty O2 Sensor can cause Bad Gas Mileage by letting the engine computer dump a bunch of extra fuel into the engine. Too much fuel can damage a myriad of things like other O2 sensors, Catalytic Converters, and even the engine! It's also guaranteed to give you Poor Fuel Economy and a rejection sticker come Mass State Inspection time. This is a very basic repair and would have been under $300 in total. He could have been on his way within a few hours should he have done it the same day.

Disconnecting the battery to clear a Check Engine Light is never going to work long term. The light may shut off for a period of time but it's never going to repair the issue

Unfortunately, he didn't do the repair. He said that a friend told him that "those sensors don't go bad" and to "just disconnect the battery for a few minutes". So he did that instead of listening to our Professional Advice. By the way, his friend is a bartender at Red Robin. Which is a pretty cool and respectable job, but there's a strong chance that all of our Trained Technicians know a lot more about cars than him. In his defense, he can probably make a drink better than any of us can and now I have an endless basket of seasoned fries with a burger on my mind.

A little inside tip..... Disconnecting the battery to clear a Check Engine Light is never going to work long term. The light may shut off for a period of time but it's never going to repair the issue. Once the car is driven the engine computer will see the problem again and the Check Engine Light will come on. Disconnecting the battery can also erase some really valuable information that Skilled Technicians regularly use to help aid in the diagnostic process.

"He's Back!"

About 6 months and 8,000 miles later this same customer came back in. Unfortunately the car was now on a tow truck. We were all amazed that the advice from his friend didn't work....

The problem now is that his O2 sensor issue turned into a much larger problem because he never repaired it. The car wouldn't even start and there was a bunch of fuel in his exhaust. The excess fuel only did some minor engine damage which was great news because it was simple to correct. But the exhaust system was in trouble. He needed all 4 Oxygen Sensors and both Catalytic Converters (which are filled with Platinum) to get him back up and running. Both Catalytic Converters were 4-6 months out from the dealer, 1 sensor was on National Backorder, and now his quick $300 repair was just shy of $3,800. The only silver lining here was that the parts ended up showing up after only about 2 weeks so he wasn't without his car for too long.

"My Suit Won't Fit"

A few weeks ago was the "Daddy Daughter Dance" at the kid's school. I haven't bought a new suit in years so I went to see a customer of ours that sells suits. He's an expert at his craft and been fitting people for suits since before I was even born. Right away he found the perfect suit, shirt, and tie. I was pumped!

They took my final measurements and needed to make a few adjustments to the suit over the next week. He was sure to tell me when I was leaving that when I come back I need to bring the shoes I intend to wear and to allow enough time to try the suit on. Simple enough!

A week later I was running late as usual and realized last minute that I forgot to get my new suit. I went in and they were first disappointed to see that I didn't bring the shoes I intended to wear. Then they were really concerned that I didn't have time to try the suit on. They must have asked 3x. But I just didn't have the time. So I thanked them and

headed on with my day.

Guess what? The suit didn't fit.

Fortunately it didn't spoil our night and I was able to just wear my old suit which was still a great option. When I went back to have the pants adjusted a little they were polite enough not to tell me "I told you so".

I think it's time I start listening to professional advice.

If you're in need of some professional advice for your car, give us a call at 413.363.0306 or Schedule Online 24/7

These guys really know their stuff. I just wish I listened to their advice a lot sooner. The work done came out absolutely perfect! The communication from Precision is awesome too. I normally panic when I have my car repaired but they kept me updated on the entire process as they had updates. It really put my mind at ease.

Robert M

Westfield, MA

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