The information that the technician provides the manufacturer is one of the most vital sources of product improvement information that the manufacturer can get! So by writing your comments well, you are doing what you do best to not only help the customer but also keep vehicles functioning and improving. You are what helps us get kids to school, people to work, to the grocery store, to celebrate weddings, and mourn at funerals. Everything we do is in the vehicle you are keeping functional and improving (ok, have I buttered you up to listen?)

Let’s look at the correction documentation you provide by telling the manufacturer exactly how you arrived at the diagnosis and corrected the malfunction.

1.) Include a statement that communicates that you either duplicated or verified the customer concern prior to starting diagnosis. Obviously, if you cannot duplicate then you should stop right there and get with management.

2.) Put the tests you performed next in the paragraph. These need to be logical tests based on the concern you are trying to correct. If the vehicle is overheating then you would not do a fuel pressure test first.

3.) Record in your comments the test results as you get them from each test. This will usually produce the root cause of failure.

  • Rotor before and after measurements
  • All DTC’s - put them in the story since can attachments get lost
  • Battery codes
  • Compression results (need the readings – sometimes we just get statements like compression low)  Record each cylinder and the reading
  • Oil consumption results - statements like using oil is not enough
  • Tolerances - record measurements such as piston to bore, transmission end play
  • Electrical voltage, ohm or amp. Don’t just say voltage low.
  • Wiring - write down the harness number, circuit number, color, and location.

Now comes the part that matters most to you as a tech. Write down exactly what you did to correct the problem so you can be paid accurately. What you write down needs to be the exact steps you took in repairing the vehicle. Whoever is coding the claim probably doesn’t know what you had to remove to get to the widget in the whatever.

1.) Put the TSB used in the story, but remember that you still need the verification, tests performed, results, and the steps taken to repair.  Simply writing "repaired as per TSB" is not enough information. The manufacturer still wants to see that you did the appropriate testing and verification that lead to the TSB.

2.) Write down if the hotline is consulted and give the number.

3.) If you did a road test before and after, write that down with how many miles were driven.

4.) Write it down like you are explaining it to your mom or grandma! Remember, if mama is happy then everybody is happy!

Helpful hints:

Don’t wait until you have finished the repair to go back and try to write down everything you did by memory.  It's hard to remember at the end of the day. Either keep a notepad or write it down in your in the computer as you go. Use some system that will help you when you sit down to type or write out your comments completely.

You should always be “on the clock” punched in on the job when you record your comments. This is included in the operation for which you are being paid. So often when we see that clock time isn’t sufficient, it is because you are not accurate on the clock when you should be. You should also be clocked in when driving the vehicle in and out. Part of the pay for warranty is accurately documenting the repair.

Remember:  no one can read your mind. You have to record in writing. What was that movie that said, “what we have here is a failure to communicate?”  We will see how old some of you are if you remember that.

One of our all-time favorite tech comments:

Complaint - Customer states the wrench light is on and has reduced engine power, will not go over 2,000 RMPS

Cause - is blank

Correction - Someone put in a different engine that has oil leaks. Needs front tires though.  IDS tested found code P1335 for the EGR valve sticking. And the housing gaskets bad. Found code P252F needs an oil change.  Performed TSB 091609 for the windshield being cracked.

Does your store need additional training? Our Trainers are ready to come to you and show your entire staff all about the warranty process. We also have online training options for Techs and Advisors. Contact us for more details.

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