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Is An Online Automotive Repair Manual Right For You?

Aug 17, 2007
Online automotive repair manuals are convenient and cost effective. The main reason is easy access to one website for your information instead of thumbing through printed manuals that tend to be limited.

There are many benefits to an online manual, most importantly the huge database that is available to store literally thousands of pages of data. They also give you the ability to find repair information on most years and models of domestic and import vehicles.

When purchasing a printed manual only the basics are covered, unlike the online manual that can provide technical service bulletins and factory recalls. They also have regular updates to keep up with technology changes.

All the online diagrams are printer friendly if you like to have instructions with you while doing repairs. Even if you are away from your home computer the online manual is accessible from any computer with internet capabilities.

Online manuals also provide easy navigation with links to electrical diagrams, tune up specifications, maintenance schedules and so on. The click and print option is much easier than trying to photocopy instructions from a six hundred page manual or having to wipe your hands when it's time to flip the page.

I personally like to keep my printed manuals clean, so before I changed over to online manuals I used to study or write down specifics before getting into a repair job. I paid one hundred and fifty U.S. dollars for a factory repair manual on my own vehicle so you can understand why I was fussy about cleanliness.

As I mentioned earlier, online repair manuals provide factory recalls and technical service bulletins. This information is extremely valuable to professional or weekend mechanics alike because they give you a symptom and repair.

For example, there is an existing technical service bulletin on a General Motors vehicle experiencing an erratic fuel gage, the cause is corrosion from certain blends of fuel. Repair instructions and the part number for the new fuel sender is supplied as part of the service bulletin literature.

Getting the right information for your car or truck is always the first step before going ahead with a repair. Even if you don't do your own mechanical work, the value of having inside information at your fingertips will always give you the edge.

Any experienced mechanic will tell you that information is essential especially when working on late model vehicles. Not having current specifications will cause you nothing but grief.

Torque specifications are very important because of the engineering and close tolerances that go into new car design. Something as simple as torquing wheel nuts will prevent a disc brake rotor from running untrue, eliminating unwanted brake problems.

For example, a 2001 Grand Am requires a wheel nut torque of 100 foot pounds while following a specific pattern. Spark plug torque for this same vehicle is 11 foot pounds, this allows for proper seating and heat disribution.

So now you know the value of a reputable online automotive repair manual, the convenience and content alone will enable any mechanically minded person to make technical repairs look easy.
About the Author
John Whelan is a certified mechanic with 30 years experience who likes to share auto tips and resources to help vehicle owners save money.
For a highly recommended online repair manual check out http://knowyourautotips.com
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