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Technician training for drivability
Posted to Shop Management Forum on 1/24/2019 55 Replies

Just throwing this out there for shop owners and mechanics, I am the owner of a very busy shop. I Have 3 excellent mechanics. They all are very attentive to detail and have almost no comebacks which is what I strive for. I however struggle when it comes to diagnostics. I am an advanced level drivability tech, I have had 25+ years doing drivability and have many other shops sending me their drivability work because I actually get them figured out. My big issue is though I trust all of my mechanics with repairs I cant hardly let them diagnose a light bulb because they usually get the diagnostics wrong. I have one mechanic that is young and is just inexperienced. I work with him when I can spare the time to and he is like a sponge. I wish I could download my brain into him but I know it doesn't work that way. I have another tech I recently stole from a ford dealership. He is a senior master at ford and was one of 2 senior masters at this dealership. He has a lot of really good knowledge. I was hoping he could take a load off of me so I could take a day off sometime. However he does have knowledge he is missing out on putting it together for an accurate diagnosis. I think he could really be a great drivability tech but needs a lot of refining and breaking of dealeritis. My third tech is an old airplane tech. I use him for those projects I need done 100% correct and do not expect him to be much of a drivability help so my main concern is with the other two. I wish I had the time to spend with them on every drivability job in the shop to walk them through my process but it is difficult when we are all working full throttle all day. Im just looking for incite that helps you guys get techs up to speed with drivability. I have no doubt that I am the only one with this issue but it really hit me today. My service writer took a couple days off. For once in the shop history I do not have enough diagnosed for the guys to repair and I have 15 vehicles needing checked out and none of them are easy. Several are from other shops that have given up and now they are our problem. The choice I felt I had today was to try to walk 3 mechanics through drivability issues at the same time while answering phones and dealing with customers. Needless to say im very frazzled now, Ill be into the shop at 3am to try to get some diagnostics done without any distractions because needless to say of the 10 vehicles they worked on today only one got a complete thorough diagnosis done on it today. Usually I can stay a day or 2 ahead of them but when it is like this it is hard when the help becomes a burden and I do not want to think of them as a burden, I need them and think highly of all of them but I'm having a hard time downloading my knowledge into them. What have you all found that helps.

Erik Rud
Shop Foreman/Owner
Big Thompson Diesel And Automotive
Loveland, Colorado, USA

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