It’s frustrating when your car is not fixed right. Trouble is, when we need car repair help, or even basic car maintenance, there are few qualified technicians to get the job done right the first time. While there are a number of factors for this, the primary reason is the skill of the mechanic doing the repair.
According to studies, 70% of automotive technicians are not qualified to work on your car. This includes technicians from dealerships, local shops, and franchises.
Over a decade ago, automotive manufacturers were predicting widespread shortages in “qualified” technicians. Now, given that 80% of the functions of the average car are controlled by advanced computer systems, qualified technicians are in even greater demand.
The shortage is evidenced by the numerous advertisements for master technicians which include a $1000 to $5000 sign-on bonus.
Today’s mechanics must be “technicians” in the true sense of the word. Technicians need an in-depth understanding of the interactive theory of mechanical, electrical, and computer systems. Today’s cars are literally a network of computers on wheels.
The true technicians are the guys who can navigate multiple systems of theory to diagnose what’s causing your car to intermittently stall at highway speeds in cold weather, on Route 66 every other Thursday morning, when it rains. Unfortunately, these guys are rare.
Automotive technology has advanced far beyond local mechanics, most of whom are still struggling with basic electronics – see the acceleration of Car Repair Prices for an interesting article.
The service industry has always lagged behind in adequate training. It has responded somewhat in recent years, but it’s too little too late. Training alone will not make up for the years of lost time, coupled with the technological advancements to come.
This leaves you, the service customer, paying top dollar to have an amateur poke and prod your vehicle. Not only is your car unlikely to be fixed correctly, paying top wages for an amateur is not fair.