Diagnostics and Inspections

Diagnosis, Inspection, Estimate, is there a difference?


The two most expensive repairs you can perform on your vehicle are the one that you don’t need and one that is performed incorrectly. With today’s vehicles, guessing as to what is causing your vehicles problems is never a good option. Often diagnostic time is required to accurately determine the cause of a customer’s concern and provide steps to correct the problem.


Estimates describe and define the cost of repairing your vehicle.


Visual inspection is typically a “wrench free” process by which a trained technician inspects your vehicle for deficiencies readily noticeable to the senses (sight, touch, smell, hearing, etc)


Diagnosis (diagnostics) is the process by which a trained technician inspects your vehicle for deficiencies not noticeable or determinable through the visual inspection process. Depending on your vehicles complaint, the equipment used during this process may range from a flashlight to a computerized scanner and take anywhere from 5 minutes to 5 hours to complete.

Due to the complexities of today’s vehicles, many deficiencies cannot be determined through the visual inspection process but require in depth diagnosis. Often, a visible symptom such as a leaking radiator is caused by an underlying problem that takes time and tools to correctly pinpoint. WALT’S AUTO CARE CENTERS offers both free written estimates and visual inspections, but because of the knowledge, tools and time involved in accurately diagnosing a vehicle complaint, Walt’s may charge for the diagnostic process.


auto mechanic inspecting brakes


Depending on the circumstances, diagnostic fees may be deducted or waived from the final invoice when you authorize Walt’s to repair your vehicles known deficiencies determined by the diagnostic process.


Technicians (as shown here) talk to customers cars via a hand held computer scanning device. Starting with the customers concern, Mike was able to quickly determine the cause and present the customer with the correction process (repair) necessary to cure the vehicle’s complaint..