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5 Rookie Mechanic Mistakes

21 NOV 2013
Career Path : Automotive

There is nothing more beautiful than the sound of a smoothly running car, especially when you are the one who fixed it up. While this is great, you should be careful not to make any of these five rookie mechanic mistakes when getting this done.

Forgetting to replace the oil filter

If you know anything about cars, then you should know that having a good oil filter is invaluable for a vehicle’s functionality. However, this does not prevent many mechanics from making the rookie mistake of forgetting to replace–or worse, removing without replacing–a car’s filter. The filter is the first line of defense against the wear and tear that the car puts on itself. Not replacing the filter every time that you change the oil will mean that your vehicle won’t be purring like a kitten for long.

If you ever plan to become a mechanic, never forget to change the filter, or you could be liable for major damage to someone’s car.

Using the wrong replacement belts

Your vehicle’s belts are necessary for several important functions. Like all car parts, they eventually wear down and your will have to replace them; every vehicle has a different belt size requirement. As a mechanic, you should know which ones are the right-sized belts for the vehicle you are working on. Improperly sized belts could cause a myriad of issues with a vehicle.

Using the wrong tire size

The correct tire size will greatly improve a driving experience. When learning to become a mechanic, you must develop the ability to identify the right tire for a vehicle. When attending mechanic school, learning about correct tire sizes is something that you should take great care to learn.

Using the wrong transmission fluid

Vehicle transmissions are not universal; there are countless vehicle transmissions currently in use and they all require a different type of transmission fluid. Fluid weight (thickness), transmission type and fluid type are just a few of the factors that you need to consider when choosing transmission fluid.

The incorrect transmission fluid will cause problems such as:

  • Grinding while shifting gears
  • Transmission failure
  • Difficulty shifting

Do not make any assumptions when changing transmission fluid, because every transmission is unique. Some manual transmissions, for instance, require automatic transmission fluid.

Installing brake pads backwards

Brake pads should only be installed one way. Putting them on backwards is catastrophic for the longevity of the brakes–it can result in total brake failure after only a few stops. Nonetheless, backwards brake pad installation is yet another common rookie mechanic mistake.

If someone ends up driving with backwards brake pads, they will require a full brake replacement almost immediately after their first stop. This is a professional disaster as you’re building up creditability when you become a mechanic.

Education is key to avoiding these rookie mechanic mistakes

The best ways to avoid these rookie mechanic mistakes will be taught to you at a good mechanic school.

Visit Canadian Automotive & Trucking Institute for more information on other career paths like dispatcher training.

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