A Question to ASE mechanics


#1

What would be your best guess, estimated length of time it would take a trained mechanic (not necessarily a Saturn mechanic) to find the problem with-in a circuit?

The car is a 2007 Saturn Vue Hybrid, 2.4-
DTC U0120- Lost communication with Starter/Generator Control Module
The factory shop manual with the diagnostic procedure provided by customer.

Also, what is the going rate for diagnostics?
Thank you for any information provided.


#2

Since none of us have a factory shop manual in front of us, none of us can answer your question. Except perhaps someone who has actually performed this procedure and remembers his time…

The first step, always, is to check all the electrical connections in the circuit. Nine times out of ten, that’s where the problem will be found…


#3

The first thing is that should not assume that an ASE certifiation means you’re getting a top-notch mechanic. It only means that someone checked off enough multiple choice answers correctly to pass a test.

Another thing to consider is that even with a factory manual things like this are not always as simple as the manual may imply.

Rates vary by locale and shop so there is no clear cut answer to your questions.


#4

At least with ASE certified mechanics, you know the guy took the time to study up a little and take the test…With non-certified mechanics, you don’t know if they can even read the test, let alone pass it…Something is better than nothing…But I know where OK is coming from. The old pro’s, they didn’t have to wear it on their shirt-sleeves…


#5

For many years my shop was the "go to " shop in town for mysterious electrical problems and FWIW myself and my employees were certified. And although the factory shop manual specifies a set time for diagnosing an electrical fault in a system the factory manual is just throwing numbers on paper when they do so. Such work is “by the clock” and even for the most experienced it can be time consuming. New car dealerships have farmed out such work to me when their mechanics have wasted all the allotted time on them with no results and refuse to continue to work searching for free. A customer paid me $260 to find and repair an intermittent short in a car and when I laid out the sheets of high lighted wiring diagrams to explain why the 10 minute repair was so expensive he told me the explanation was not necessary. He was the design engineer(PHD) for a lighting manufacturer and trouble shooting AC was his main problem. If it had been easy he would have fixed it himself.


#6

Hybrid is the reason the question seemed funny. After I noticed it, the question became easier to answer. Usually when you can’t communicate with a computer or a module, you have to replace it. That should take one hour. Diagnostic for that is usually finished when you get the code unless the wiring is obviously damaged. Any GM dealer, like Chevrolet, can probably take your money and replace it with a new part.


#7

Thank you all for your replies. Wiring diagrams, over my head for sure. " Any GM dealer can take your money", Amen.


#8

Unfortunately, electrical problems can be very time-consuming. Never a sure fire way to calculate your time, unless it’s a simple component change.