Autoelectrics Mobile Product Services.
Shropshire UK ..Telford (01952) 247007

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Vehicle computerised diagnostics
Mobile service for car electrics repair in Shropshire
- Telford, Shrewsbury and  local Shropshire areas.

Telephone 01952 247007 for booking.

Engine Management warning light on ? Breakdown ? Driveability problems ? Immobilised? Engine Management  fault? Electrical fault - Car won't start ? repairs? Private Customers, Fleet  & Motor trade Welcome. Unsure if you should drive the vehicle with a dash warning light on - We provide a mobile service that comes  to you.

Computerised vehicle diagnostics is a means of using the ability of the vehicle computer control system to monitor  the condition of  vehicle components.

Dashboard warning lamp
We DO NOT recommend vehicle operation is continued with a warning lamp or warning message active It is a warning for a reason !

First check your owners manual to find out what the warning light refers to. Operation sequence of most engine system related dashboard  warning lamps illuminate when the key is switched to ignition position and should go out when the vehicle engine is running.

Check Engine warning lamp:
 Illumination of the check engine or engine management warning ( MIL )  lamp indicates that the vehicle engine management  computer (ECU , ECM ,PCM) control module has identified a fault  related to the efficient running of the engine and probably affecting exhaust gas emissions.
Vehicles with diesel engines may also use the glow plug pre heat warning lamp to indicate engine management information.

Fault Codes
If the check engine warning light comes on during  engine operation  a fault code has almost certainly been logged by the engine control system, and consequently the engine control strategy  may revert to limp home or restricted power mode.
Safety Features
Logged engine management faults in some cases  may  prevent the engine  from  running by software function..
Limp home mode will usually be noticed by the driver because of  poor acceleration, shuddering, restricted performance, or the engine will not rev above a certain rpm.
What causes the engine management lamp to light up ?
Sensor Inputs : The value expected from each engine sensor is programmed into the software of the engine control module and represented as a map or lookup table. (Fuel map, Ignition map, etc)
An out of range value may represent a faulty component , wiring circuit or mechanical condition.
The check engine lamp may illuminate to notify the driver that a fault has been detected for example  when a value exceeds parameters programmed in to engine controller  memory map.

Retrieval of fault codes
Most modern vehicles require diagnostic equipment with dedicated software to interrogate the ecm for stored fault codes.
Automotive  system electrical diagnostics involves an interrogation  scan of the  vehicle computer  for stored fault codes using suitable diagnostic equipment such as a scan tool fault code reader.
Some older vehicles (usually Japanese)  have a self diagnosis function allowing the the fault code to be read by counting the flashes of the check engine light and looking up the value in a reference table.

Historical fault codes
Intermittent faults which occur during driving may be logged as an error fault code which causes the dashboard warning light to illuminate..

Random disconnecting of electrical connectors in the engine bay may also cause  fault codes to be logged.

Fault Code Categories

EOBD fault codes
The term EOBD refers to European On Board Diagnostics.  EOBD standards apply to Petrol vehicles from May 2001 on , and Diesel vehicles from 2003 on.

EOBD Fault codes , sometimes referred to as P....  codes   are generally logged for factors which affect vehicle exhaust emissions.

EOBD monitoring has various modes including Freeze frame Data, which can be useful to help diagnostics.

Vehicle Manufacturer specific fault codes
Vehicle manufacturers  use their own specific fault codes relating to in depth component functions not covered by EOBD

Engine Management Memory Reset
Diagnostic equipment will reset the control system computer software and turn the warning light off , however if a fault is still present the check light will often  illuminate again once a driving cycle has been completed until the fault has been rectified. In some cases several error codes may be present.

Electronic engine Management 
Engine control computer module compares values from various sensors to calculate;

  • Driver demand

  • Throttle position sensor, brake pedal switch,clutch switch,etc
  • Position of mechanical components

  • Using Crankshaft position sensor , Cam position sensor
  • Temperature :

  • How hot or cold the engine is (intake air temperature,coolant temperaure)
  • Engine speed and load

  • airflow sensor, manifold absolute pressure (vacuum) , turbocharger boost pressure
  • Exhaust emissions

  • Lambda or Oxygen sensor operation
  • Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR)

  • Test and Repair
    Following testing, a faulty wiring circuit may be repaired or component adjusted , cleaned or replaced.
    Diagnostic Equipment Functions
    Our diagnostic equipment is capable of
  •   Fault code reading
  •   Actuator testing

  • to verify wiring circuits by operating the suspect component on a wide range of vehicle systems. The actuator test function can allow some components to be thoroughly cleaned which may save replacement cost.
  • Programming and Coding

  • Some components such as electronic fuel injectors , throttle bodies etc may need coding to the vehicle ecu
  • Advanced system testing can be carried out using oscilloscope signal test methods
  • Reset Procedures

  • Following repair work the fault code memory of the vehicle computer will need to be reset to clear stored fault codes.


    Engine Sensors, Actuators , and Common Faults

    Exhaust gas recirculation ( EGR ) system functions to reduce combustion temperature and oxides of Nitrogen ( Note : not Nitrous oxide !) EGR and Idle speed control ( ISC ) devices are particularly prone to failure due to build up of carbon and soot deposits which can restrict the air inlet system of the engine.

    EGR systems may cause the MIL warning lamp to illuminate intermittently and flag a P0400 EOBD fault code due to "critical system malfunction" as described on certain diagnostic equipment !

    Mechanical  position sensors :

    Cam position sensor : used to identify cylinder phasing

    Crankshaft (CKP)position sensor : Identification of engine crankshaft position and calculation of engine speed and combustion forces. Frequency and amplitude signal is proportional to engine rotational speed.

    Symptoms: Non Start, Misfire

    Typical failure : Signal errors can occur due to sensor failure , phonic wheel damage, wiring connection failure, loss of synchronisation between crankshaft and camshaft(s). cranksensor.jpg

    Throttle position sensor (TPS) / Accelerator Position sensor (APP)
    Driver demand signal. TPS  failure may occur due to wear of potentiometer track causing flat spots and hesitation when accelerating.

    Brake Pedal Position & Clutch Pedal Position sensors used to reduce to stabilise idle speed and fuel delivery quantity when  engine is off load . Faults may occur due to worn out switches resulting in false (implausible) signals.

    Mass Air Flow (MAF) sensor measures volume of air entering air intake , Air Mass Meter measures weight of air entering intake tract. Engine load sensor which can effect fuel metering (petrol engine) or EGR position (diesel engines) .

    Intake Air Temperature Sensor may be incorporated with air mass meter , with MAP sensor (T-MAP) or seperate.

    Manifold Absolute Pressure (MAP) sensor measures engine load by vacuum (petrol engines) or boost pressure (turbocharged engines) at intake manifold. Split or blocked pipes can effect operation. MAP signal can influence fuel control, EGR, and turbo boost.

    Temperature measurements may be signalled by either coolant temperature sensor or cylinder head temperature sensor. Temperature signal is processed to compensate engine smooth running by control of fuel delivery  egr position, & diesel pre heat function.

    Fuel Delivery System :  Low and high pressure fuel injection pumps, pressure regulator, fuel injectors. Prone to faults caused by fuel contamination , and general wear.

    Boost pressure control : turbocharger waste gate position and hence boost pressure control is often actuated by solenoids controlling vacuum circuits. Common faults can include loss of vacuum due to vacuum pump wear, split or blocked vacuum pipes, electrical circuit faults with control, solenoid or wiring.

     Lambda Sensor (as fitted to Petrol & Gas fuel systems)
    Measures oxygen content of exhaust gas and is used as a feedback signal to control fuel quantity delivery. Can deteriorate due to age and contamination. Lambda sensor fault codes may also relate to problems other than the sensor itself. Lambda sensor operation can is affected by sensor temperature .Lambda sensor feedback signal is only used when engine operating temperature is sufficient to enable closed loop control status.
    A second lambda sensor may be fitted in the exhaust system after the catalytic convertor to monitor condition of the catalyst.

    We can supply a range of replacement sensors and actuators at competitive prices

    Anti-theft Immobiliser warning lamp

    This may flash as the engine is cranked whilst the immobiliser is active.
    Manufacturer or OEM immobiliser systems are often integrated into a vehicle on board computer system and may prevent starting, ignition, or fuelling circuits from operating.
    Faults can sometimes occur if a receiver does not recognise the signal transmitted by a coded key or remote, or no transmission due to defective remote/discharged battery, or broken wiring causing CAN signal faults.
    This type of system can rarely be bypassed other than by reprogramming.
    Aftermarket alarm and immobiliser systems are installed as an added security measure by some owners. If these systems fail they can normally be removed or bypassed by an autoelectrician to enable vehicle operation.

    You should check with your insurance company if an aftermarket alarm is to be removed as this may affect insurance policy validation.
    There is more information about alarms & immobilisers on our vehicle security page.

    Computerised Diagnostics
    Snap On Diagnostic equipment with latest up to date version 10.4 software for modern vehicles is one of a range of tools which provides Fault code reading, Fault code clearing, Actuator testing, ECU interrogation for live data.
    Diagnostic testing available in Telford & Shrewsbury Shropshire areas.
    Vehicle Software available

    Alfa Romeo
    Mercedes Benz
    American OBD2

    Manufacturer Systems include : Ford,Bosch, Sagem, Renix, Delco, Denso, Autoliv, Lucas,
    Vehicle System function diagnostics for :

    Common Rail Diesel, Engine Management, Petrol Fuel Injection,Diesel Fuel Injection including Lucas EPIC,Spark Ignition, Antilock Braking system (ABS), Airbag,Adaptive damping,Air conditioning, climate control,Audio control,Cellphone, Central door locking,Diesel pump electronics,Immobiliser,Insrument cluster, Dashboard,Lighting control, CANbus,Passive Antitheft PATS,Power doors, Steering Control, Electrically operated power steering, parking sensors, tyre pressure monitoring control, ECU information & coding. DPF regeneration.

    Breakdown callout and diagnostics in Telford,Shrewsbury,Shropshire areas.

    Battery  Charging system warning lamp

    This light indicates that either battery voltage is out of range or that the alternator is not generating current to recharge the battery.

    Low battery voltage can be caused by a faulty battery, faulty alternator  / dynamo, loose / broken drive belt or a wiring fault.

    Incorrect battery reference voltage levels will also affect engine management, and other electronic control systems.

    Our mobile service can verify the condition of your vehicle battery using either midtronics or Bosch battery tester, or check for alternator output ,and trace wiring faults which may be causing the alternator not to charge or the battery voltage to drop.

    Systems on later vehicles may be computer controlled and require dedicated test equipment.

    We also have the facility to free run bench test your alternator.


    We can supply an extensive range of alternators starter motors and components and also provide unit repair and recondition facilities


    link to products page

    Bosch KTS equipment provides control unit diagnosis and multimeter functions


    Airbag or SRS warning lamp

    (Also known as SRS, Supplementary Restraint System, etc)

    Illuminates if a fault is recognised by the airbag control module. Airbag deployment is controlled by sensors which react to impact above 20mph.

    The SRS system self checks for wiring, sensor ,and actuator faults which may cause false triggering. If such a fault occur the system normally disables and illuminates the airbag failure warning lamp.

    Faults can occur due to wiring, connections, impact sensors, control module faults, igniter defective, spiral cable defective, abnormal system voltage.

    Systems have a self diagnosis function which logs fault codes when an error occurs and may then be diagnosed by interrogation procedure with suitable diagnostic equipment.

    Oil Pressure warning lamp
    If the oil pressure warning lamp illuminates it indicates low engine oil pressure which may lead to major mechanical failure ie engine seizure and breakdown. Possible causes: Low engine oil level, oil pressure switch or circuit fault, Oil pump failure.

    Coolant warning lamp
    Low coolant level. Check for leaks as engine damage may occur due to loss of coolant. A low coolant level warning lamp may also illuminate if the wiring is chaffed and shorted to ground or the level sensor is faulty.

    Temperature warning lamp
    Indicates a problem with the engine cooling system which may cause engine damage. Possibilities are ; blocked radiator , faulty pressure cap, coolant leaks, combustion gas leak into cooling system, cooling fans not operatng due to motor ,switch,or wiring defects.

    Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) warning lamp

    Antilock braking operates by rapidly applying, and releasing the brake on each wheel just before it locks.

    Faults within the Antilock braking system will cause the ABS light to illuminate. When the ABS system logs a fault this often causes the ABS to be disabled with affects on braking and steering control requiring increased pedal pressure as the system reverts to failsafe mode.

    A permanently illuminated ABS warning lamp will result in MoT test failure as it represents a dangerous condition. Typical reasons for ABS light illumination are ; faulty wheel speed sensors, damaged or dirty rotor sensor ring, faulty modulator solenoids, abnormal battery voltage, system pressure faults, wiring faults.

    Again first course of action is fault code reading using diagnostic equipment, possibly followed by individual component oscilloscope signal testing  or wiring checks then repair.

    Diagnostic Training

    Automotive diagnostics involves more than just plugging in a scan tool to read faults.

    Computer diagnostic error codes only provide a clue as to what the control system recognises as a fault but remember it is an electro mechanical system which is under repair. Training providers often refer to "Cause" and "Effect" when lecturing on automotive diagnostics.

     Motor trade experience combined with continuing professional development of staff through system manufacturer training courses aids vehicle system diagnosis & repair.




    Vehicle Diagnostic Equipment

    Extensive use of vehicle diagnostic equipment in the course of business has enabled us to gain links with reputable suppliers of vehicle diagnostic equipment  for Car Van Truck and Agricultural equipment markets. If you are a trade customer looking to purchase such equipment please feel free to enquire.

    Entry level DIY Basic EOBD diagnostic scan tools for car engine management are readily available from many suppliers at low cost eg 30 to 70 or less.

    Professional level diagnostic equipment is much more expensive and cost of such equipment can easily run into  several thousands of pounds.   If purchasing diagnostic equipment we recommend reviewing not only initial purchase price but also the ongoing cost of software updates to enable operation on modern vehicles and also facilities for the provision of technical information such as wiring diagrams , component locations, and coding information.




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    Car diagnostic testing in Telford & Shrewsbury  Shropshire areas . Call 01952 247007 to book.


    Price Menu

    Engine ECU Fault  Code Read - Computer Scan tool test using  Professional Diagnostic equipment to interrogate engine management of Diesel and Petrol vehicles
    Bosch trained Petrol & Diesel engine management technician

    Call for price


     Diesel CR fuel injector Recode to Powertrain control module



    ABS Antilock braking system fault code read

    (system often requires repair before reset will work)


    Airbag Safety Restraint System SRS fault code read (system often requires repair before reset will work) Airbag module resets for vehicle body repairer after repair has been completed


    Transmission Control Module TCM fault code read  
    Oil Service Inspection light reset

    (included with vehicle servicing)


    Callout charges for journey over 6 miles

    Ring with location  for price


    West Mercia Mechanical Services,
    10 Arrow Road,
    Telford.TF5 0LF.
    United Kingdom.
    Telephone: 01952 247007
    Mobile: 07703 558610


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