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Diagnostic Theory


Diagnostic Theory
Diagnosis is more than just following a series of interrelated steps in order to find the solution to a specific condition. It is a way of looking at systems that are not functioning the way they should and finding out why. Also, it is knowing how the system should work and whether it is working correctly.
Diagnostic Theory

Diagnosis is more than just following a series of interrelated steps in order to find the solution to a specific condition. It is a way of looking at systems that are not functioning the way they should and finding out why. Also, it is knowing how the system should work and whether it is working correctly.
There are basic rules for diagnosis. If these rules are followed, the cause of the condition is usually found the first time through the system.

Know the System
Sometimes this means checking the system against one that is known to be working properly.
  • Know how the parts go together.
  • Know how the system operates and its limits and what happens when something goes wrong.
Know the History of the System
A clue in any one of these areas might save time.
  • How old or new is the system?
  • What kind of treatment has it had?
  • Has it been serviced in the past in such a manner that might relate to the present condition?
  • What is the service history?
Know the History of the Condition
Know how the condition made itself known; it may be an important clue to the cause.
  • Did it start suddenly or did it appear gradually?
  • Was it related to some other occurrence like an accident or previous part replacement?
Know the Probability of Certain Conditions Developing
It is true that most conditions are caused by simple things rather than by complex ones and they occur in a fairly predictable pattern. Electrical conditions, for instance, usually occur at connections rather than in components. An engine no-start is more likely to be caused by a loose wire or some component out of adjustment than a sheared-off camshaft. Know the difference between impossible and improbable. Many good technicians have spent hours diagnosing a system thinking certain failures were impossible, only to find out that the failures were just improbable and actually happened. Remember to verify that new parts are functioning properly.

Do Not Cure the Symptom and Leave the Cause
Lowering the air pressure in a front tire may correct the condition of a vehicle leaning to one side, but it does not correct the cause of the condition.

Be Positive the Cause Is Found
Double-check findings. If a worn component is found or something is out of adjustment, determine what else could be wrong. If one of the engine mounts was loose, could the other one be loose too? What about the transmission mounts?

Diagnosis Charts
Charts are simply a way of expressing the relationship between basic logic and a physical system of components. They help corner the cause of a condition in the shortest possible amount of time. Diagnosis charts combine many areas of diagnosis into one visual display:
  • probability of certain things occurring in a system
  • speed of checking certain components or functions before others
  • simplicity of performing certain tests before others
  • elimination of checking huge portions of a system by performing simple tests
  • certainty of narrowing down the search to a small portion before performing in-depth testing
The fastest way to find a condition is to work with the tools that are available, which means working with proven diagnosis charts and the proper special equipment for the system.
  • msgny, SBann0317 and KevinJ64 like this


1 Comments

Today I think our inspectors, and mechanic's need a refresher course on Theory and troubleshooting. I have seen hydraulic systems just throwing parts on till it fix with a lot of hope.

    • Snate1977 likes this
 
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