Haynes repair manual vs chiltons

I like the Haynes manuals as opposed to chiltons. the Haynes assumes I am an idiot and shows me pictures. the chiltons assumes I am a mechanic and know the names of the parts. usually I don t like it when I am assumed to be an idiot, but there are exceptions to every rule. of course I am trying to make my '75 ford truck last forever because I almost understand it now and don t want to buy new tools or manuals, so I may be prejudiced. what do you guys think?

@wesw Haynes and Chilton are owned by the same publisher

If you want to be “treated” like a mechanic, you have to buy the factory service manual

It is often worthwhile to have Chilton and Haynes and more. Over the years Mitchell and Motors became the choice of independent and factory mechanics with Chilton fading to the DIY market where I guess Haynes had remained. Alldata jumped out with the digital system and Mitchell followed. Each has had their weak and strong points and it seemed worthwhile to have both systems. But it is amazing how much insight and technical information is available on forums like this one for the patient. I learn something new weekly and I am a retired shop owner and mechanic.

For many German cars the Bentley manuals are pretty good.

Pictures and diagrams are not a bad thing to have. For what it’s worth, both (especially Chiltons) has technical errors so attention should be paid to the info given. Some incorrect technical info or wiring schematic faults have caused me a fair amount of grief in the past.

ALLDATA has more depth but is not without faults and even factory service manuals are known to be wrong now and then.

Not knowing something does not make you an idiot and I think that you’re taking it wrong.

I have a Trailblazer, and have fumbled through both Chilton and Haynes in the past for this and other cars, sometimes great sometimes not. I have gotten better information and ideas or maintenance and replacement of things from Trailvoy.com for a trailblazer. The best example I can give is changing trans fluid. Dropping the pan and filter is good, but it only replaces 6 of 12 qts. If you want a total change crack the trans open! Knowing my filter was good, as it had been changed within mile recommendation. Disconnect trans hose from radiator, hose to flow to a bucket, start engine and pour in trans fluid until what is flowing into the bucket is purty red. You won’t find that in Chilton or haynes, and I feel good about having a greater percent of old trans fluid out. Other help on thermostat, 2 or 3 experiences and options etc. See if there is a repair site specific for your breed or engine is my best experience. Web repair sites are good also. Thank goodness for all the altruistic helpers on the interweb!

Really the factory service manual is the only way to go. I’ve bought Chiltons etc. to cheap out but they just plain do not have the detail on all systems, the diagnostic charts, and other detail information that you sometimes need. For any vehicle that I intended to keep beyone the warranty period, I’d bite the bullet and pay the $150 for the factory manuals.

I don’t think either is going to be in print much longer. I cannot buy one for my car, and I’ve noticed that these manuals are not being printed for many of the new vehicles. Everything now is internet.

I have browsed through both while in the stores. For my cars, I found both to have inaccurate information with pics from older models. I have gotten the factory service manual for my Mazda and it is great, but still not perfect. I always get a lot of help from the internet, mostly forums like this.

thanks for all the advice. it was helpful.

Haynes and Chilton are both crap these days. I just buy what is available.