Behind the Wheel, Under the Hood

Explaining a service problem: Do you make a noise?

February 19, 2010
Imagine you’ve got a problem with your car, how would you explain it to your mechanic? Do you make a noise? With so many “car terms” and “big words” out there, it may be easier for someone to explain what’s wrong by what they hear. I asked some McCarthy service employees to demonstrate how people explain their car problems. Here’s what they said: [youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXh6IXGI70k[/youtube] So, don’t be ashamed or embarrassed by singing your car’s tune. It happens all the time … and the noises can actually tell you a lot about what might be wrong. Check out this cheat sheet on engine noises. Here’s the thing … if you’re not as outgoing as some and are looking for a different way to relay your car problems, most automobile manufacturers (Nissan and Hyundai, for example) have a document that customers can fill out that help convey their problems. GM uses a Customer Concern Verification Sheet to help communicate the concern from customer to technician. So tell me, when you take your car in, do you make the noise? Do you find it helps explain the problem? Have any tips and tricks that help you talk to your service person?

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  • ray2633 February 22, 2010 at 2:13 am

    I’ll admit I’ve made some odd sounds to a mechanic once or twice..

    You know what would be a good idea? To some how record the sound cars make, then upload em’ along with a description of the problem.

  • Lauren McCarthy February 22, 2010 at 9:33 am

    That is a good idea! Let me look around to see if there’s anything out there already. Thanks for the great suggestion!