SMOG CHECKTECHNICIAN’S GUIDE TO USING THE INTERNET By Mike Sheldon
USING THE INTERNET In recent years, legislation was passed requiring all vehicle manufacturers (mfgs.) to provide aftermarket repair technicians and shops with all the information needed to diagnose and repair their vehicles. Mfgs. were required to make this information available, via the internet, to aftermarket technicians at a nominal fee. Unfortunately, these mfg. websites are being under used by many technicians and shops!
USING THE INTERNET To successfully diagnose and repair today’s high tech vehicles, YOU NEED TO USE THE INTERNET!! The following slides go over some internet basics as they pertain to smog inspections, vehicle diagnosis, and repairs. For some, this will seem very basic. For others, it will open up new avenues for inspection, diagnostic, and repair information.
USING THE INTERNET – Getting on the Internet Q: OK, so how do you get on the internet? A: To access the internet, you need: • A computer linked to the internet through a internet service provider. • Your personal computer (PC) needs a program called an internet browser. Among the common browser programs are: “Internet Explorer”, “Safari” (Apple PCs), “Mozilla”, “Opera”, etc. Your PC probably has one of these programs already installed on it’s hard drive.
USING THE INTERNET – Getting on the Internet Q: If I don’t own a PC how can I complete my practical exercises that require me to use the internet? A: The following options are available: • The VVC computer lab is available to you. • Most public libraries have PCs that you may use for free! you just need to get a library card. They also have staff that can assist you. • Find an “internet cafe” and pay a small fee to use their PCs. • Ask your employer or a friend if they would allow you to use their PC.
SO SHOW ME HOW TO GET ON THE INTERNET! USING THE INTERNET – Getting on the Internet
USING THE INTERNET – Website Addresses You have seen it a million times on TV. The announcer says “For more information go to our website”; then you see this funny sentence at the bottom of the screen that starts off with a “www.” and ends with a “.com” and a strange name in between – what does that mean? When a company wants to be on the internet they are given a specific address called their website address (home page). This address usually starts with a www. (meaning world wide web), a name, then “.com” (for “commercial”). If the group is not a commercial enterprise (like a charity), it could end in “.org” (for “organization”), “.edu” (for education), or “.gov” (for “government”).
USING THE INTERNET – Website Addresses To access a specific website, you need to enter the correct address in the browser’s address box. When you enter this address, you must enter the address characters exactly as you see it – no spaces, and type all the characters (e.g. @, -, /, _ etc.) Lets say we wanted to go to a popular search engine website like “Google.” In the address box you would type: www.google.com and press the “enter” key on the keyboard.
USING THE INTERNET – BAR’s Website BAR’s website has a lot of useful information for Smog Check technicians and stations. The site has been recently been updated, and some new features were added. This site can provide you with information that can assist you in performing an inspection. Some of this site’s information is not available on any other website. So let’s take a look at some of the information that is available:
Accessing Manufacturer Websites - TSBs Accepted engine performance/emission failure diagnostic procedures require the technician to check (early on in the process) for Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs)- usually after checking for Diagnostic Trouble Codes (DTCs). Often, the most up-to-date source for these TSBs is the manufacturer’s website. Today, these websites can be accessed by the technician via the internet, for a nominal fee (and in some cases for free!)
Accessing Manufacturer Websites - TSBs Q: So how can a TSB help me? Imagine the following situation: A technician has a 2004 1.6L Hyundai Accentthat has the followingDTC: P0130 (oxygen sensor malfunction). Without Checking for TSBs, the tech incorrectly replaces the O2 sensor with a new one – same code reappears! WHAT TO DO NOW?
Accessing Manufacturer Websites - TSBs Had the technician checked the manufacturer’s website, he/she would have found the following TSB related to this code: As you can see, this was not an O2 sensor failure issue, but an ECM reprogramming issue. Now the shop must suffer the loss of time and money (O2 sensor was not returnable) that resulted from an incorrect diagnosis and not following a sound diagnostic procedure. Technical Service Bulletin This bulletin supersedes TSB# 05-36-003-2 to correct DTC code in the title from P0530 to P0503. Subject: 2000-2004 1.5L & 1.6L ACCENT P0130 (OXYGEN SENSOR) AND P0503 (SPEED SENSOR) Group: ENGINE ELECTRICAL Number: 06-36-002 Date: MAY, 2006 Model: 2000-2004 ACCENT DESCRIPTION: Some 2000-2004 Accents with 1.5L SOHC and 1.6L DOHC engines may experience the following symptoms:: • DTC P0130 (Oxygen Sensor Malfunction) • DTC P0503 (Speed Sensor Malfunction) • Reverse to Drive lurch while rolling backwards (On Automatic Transaxle equipped vehicles only) This bulletin describes the procedure for updating the Engine Control Module (ECM) software to improve the above condition by using the Hi-Scan Pro. VEHICLES AFFECTED: Model: 2000-2004 ACCENT vehicles with 1.5L SOHC and 1.6L DOHC engines.
Accessing Manufacturer Websites - TSBs OK, you have convinced me that TSBs have value, but I have never been to a manufacturer’s (mfg.) website before, where is it located and how do I access this information? It is not as hard as you think, let’s take this process step-by-step. The first step is to find the specific manufacturer’s webpage address for the vehicle you are working on. An organization called “The National Automotive Service Task Force” has provided a list of mfg. webpage addresses: www.nastf.org. So let’s go there now!
Accessing Manufacturer Websites - Getting an Email Address But I don’t have an email address, how do I get one? You can set up a “free” email account at various websites, some of which are: • www.hotmail.com • www.gmail.com • www.yahoo.com
Accessing Manufacturer Websites Now that you know how to sign up to access a manufacturer’s website, let’s explore some the information you might find on a typical website:
Other Helpful Websites There are many other websites that can assist a Smog Check technician. One popular website is the “International Automotive Technicians Network” (www.I-ATN.com). This site’s ‘standard’ membership level is “free”. Let’s take a look at some of the features of this site that might be of value:
Other Helpful Websites http://www.import-car.com/ http://motorage.search-autoparts.com/ http://www.motor.com/ http://service.gm.com/index_en-US.html http://www.motorcraft.com/ http://www.autoshop101.com/ http://www.aeswave.com/Articles/index.htm http://www.underhoodservice.com/ http://www.wellsmfgcorp.com/index.html http://www.aa1car.com/library.htm http://www.kemparts.com/scripts/141.asp http://www.smogsite.com/articles.html If you are interested in adding to your knowledge of engine performance systems, you might find the following websites very useful.
INTERNET QUIZ Q: What type of program does your PC need to access the internet? A: An internet browser program. Q: If you type in this address: www.smog check.ca.gov in the browser address box, will the system take you to that website? (look closely) A: No, you cannot have spaces in a website address.
INTERNET QUIZ Q: Name three areas on BAR’s Smog Check website that can assist a licensed Smog Check technician: A: Vehicle test history, BAR Blasts, and ARB’s aftermarket parts database. Q: Only dealer techs are allowed to access a manufacturer’s website. True orFalse? A:False, anyone can access their sites.
INTERNET QUIZ Q: Name a website where can you find a list of vehicle manufacturers websites? A: The “National Automotive Service Task Force” website: www.nastf.org. Q: You must own a PC and pay money to a service provider to get a personal internet address. True or False? A:False. A number of websites will allow you to sign up for email service, and provide you with an email address for free.