Automobile repair involves identifying and the repairing of damaged vehicles by persons trained in this field.  Qualified auto mechanics or technicians work in a garage or workshop. Most often, a mechanic/ technician job includes quoting prices for customers prior to repair job or after disassembling partially for inspection purposes.  Aces Automotive mechanics or technicians use several tools when repairing a specific vehicle part or replacing one or several parts as assembles.

Type of Repairs and Tools

Damage to vehicles can be classified into two groups: minor and major. Minor damages include cracked windshield, while major ones include changing a complete door panel. Pneumatic tools, plasma cutters and metal- cutting guns are used to remove damaged door panels and bumpers.  Major damages such as body alignment requires the use of hydraulic jacks and hammers. Some repairs require the use of hand tools, like hammers, pliers, files screwdrivers and wrenches.

Sometimes, repair technicians may have to do a complete job all by themselves. At other times, especially in a large shop, an assembly line approach is used where team effort is needed to complete the job with expert technicians.  Repair technicians may prime and paint repaired parts but this is really the job of automotive painters. Repair technicians, and, or auto mechanics replace parts, remove dents and straighten metal panels that are unable to be restored.  Even though these mechanics/technicians can repair any vehicle, they mainly work on cars, small trucks and sport utility vehicles. Get more information here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Automobile_repair_shop.

Types of auto repair shops and automotive garages.

Here are the categories of automotive repair shops and garages:

  • Auto part stores that retain service operations; a common feature in the US but not in the UK.
  • Independently owned repair shops and operated establishments: These consist of nationwide or regional chains and licenses.  
  • Specialty repair shops: These shops specialize in specific parts, such as brakes, mufflers and exhaust systems, transmissions, wheel alignment, repairing and installing automotive glass, automotive air conditioning repair. There are also those who work on specific brands or vehicles from specific regions of the world. Additionally, other repair shops concentrate on vehicle adjustments and customization.  Specialized automotive repair shops oftentimes have different arrangement and facilities for specific jobs or vehicles including mechanics and technicians with varied qualifications.
  • Online repair shops called mobile mechanics:  These provide at home repair services including home delivery of used and new parts for the latest model and classic cars whose parts are generally unavailable in the market.
  • Mobile repair: In the UK and some other countries there are companies that offer SMART mobile body repair service to private as well as commercial customers: auto body repair, Bumper Repairs, paintwork defect repair and paintless dent repair.  This type of service involves the refinishing of the damage to vehicles on a localized area, where the damaged area needing the repair does not exceed the size of an A4 paper.

How Crucial is Maintenance to Auto Repair?

Auto repair is not limited to vehicle collision; in fact, maintenance is a factor that influences auto repair.   In modernized industrial countries, simple vehicle maintenance is an integral part of a mechanics job. In other countries however, vehicle owners only consult mechanics when a vehicle shows sign of deterioration. Failure of proper maintenance of parts can result in damage, which will naturally require the expertise of mechanics or auto technicians to fix the problem.

The major objective of maintenance is to prevent equipment failure. Maintenance assists in preserving and restoring the reliability of damaged parts before they finally fail.  Complete or partial overhauls at specific times, lubrication, oil changes, and minor adjustments are all maintenance activities that will keep a vehicle in optimal working condition. Some vehicle owners do not understand the need for scheduled maintenance because they view it as unnecessary spending. However, a correct understanding will prevent damage that will prove to be more costly in the end.  Read more here on the importance of scheduled maintenance.  

Summary

Over the years, the mechanics job has shifted from purely mechanical to include electronic. Advancement in technology has produced vehicles with intricate electronic and computer systems. The result is an extensive foundation of knowledge prior to the past.

With these new developments, the complexity of technology is now integrated into automobiles. The result is that the majority of independent garages and auto dealerships provide technicians with sophisticated diagnostic computers to assist them to properly diagnose and repair vehicles, which could not be done otherwise.

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Will Hopstetter

Will is an automotive market enthusiast living in the United Kingdom. He holds a diverse background in automotive and enjoys utilizing that to produce insights into the inner workings of the industry.

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