The Best Tool For Mechanics to Diagnose Electrical Issues

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Most mechanics agree that one of the most frustrating problems to diagnose is electrical gremlins that always seem to pop up at the worst time for car owners. Although today's modern cars, trucks, and SUVs are assembled with highly complex electrical systems, they still work under the basic principles that older vehicles used to power systems. Due to this fact, most ASE certified mechanics still use the basic probe electrical tester to diagnose most electrical issues found on modern and older vehicles.

What is a power probe electrical tester?

A power probe is a brand name for an electrical tester that was developed many years ago and designed for mechanics to measure the true RMS value of alternating current. Today, there are multiple manufacturers and tool companies that sell electrical current probes that are designed to check three primary electrical signals:

  • Identifies a positive circuit
  • Identifies a negative circuit
  • Identifies an open circuit

One of the most common circuit failures on cars, trucks, or SUVs is a faulty ground or a blown fuse. The power probe electrical tester has an easy to use power test feature that can detect whether the circuit has a resistive or bad ground, or if it's a complete circuit. This allows the mechanic to trace and identify the problem circuit and eliminate good circuits which expedites the diagnostic process and discovers the true source of the electrical problem much easier.

What electrical problems can you diagnose with a power probe?

A power probe electrical tester is designed to connect to the vehicle's battery and often has a 20 foot or longer cable that allows a mechanic to use it from bumper to bumper. By connecting to the positive and negative terminals, mechanics don't have to spend additional time looking for good ground connections, which can lead to false continuity readings in standard electrical probes.

In general, there are five individual components that contribute to electrical issues:

  • Diodes
  • Switches
  • Relays
  • Fuses
  • Wires

There is a green LED light that tells a mechanic that the circuit is open (meaning there is a problem that needs to be fixed) or that it has continuity (meaning the circuit is good). This device also has an auxiliary ground lead that allows mechanics to activate electrical switches and test them instantly. Most mechanics use a power probe to complete multiple electronic inspections including:

  • Activating electrical systems that have positive and negative source voltage
  • Testing sensor
  • Tracing electrical signals and capturing glitches in the electrical system of a vehicle
  • Electronic fuel injector testing
  • Testing trailer lights, brakes and turn signals
  • Complete electrical resistance testing

A power probe electrical tester is extremely portable, allowing mechanics on the road to simplify the process of diagnosing and repairing electrical issues when time is limited and their customers need to get their vehicles back on the road. If you’re already a certified mechanic, you enjoy working with customers on the road and you’re interested in working with YourMechanic, submit an online application to work for YourMechanic for an opportunity to become a mobile mechanic.


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YourMechanic Brake Pad Replacement Service

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Number of Reviews

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Rating Summary
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10,671
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85

Michael

15 years of experience
518 reviews
Michael
15 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz GL450 - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Atlanta, Georgia
Micheal was punctual and friendly. Work was completed within promised time. Will definitely use again.
Volvo S80 - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Roswell, Georgia
Michael was SUPER QUICK with doing my brake and rotors. Great communication throughout the whole process. Will always recommend

Kenneth

19 years of experience
509 reviews
Kenneth
19 years of experience
Toyota Sequoia - Brake Pads Replacement (Front) - Newport Beach, California
Kenneth did a great job and very knowledgeable. He has a great attitude and I will for sure be using him again.

Chuy

13 years of experience
129 reviews
Chuy
13 years of experience
Honda Civic - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Cicero, Illinois
Excellent work on doing the breaks for my car and the break and steering system flush I’ll definitely recommend and take into consideration for chuy’s work whenever I need a fix on my car

Richard

16 years of experience
72 reviews
Richard
16 years of experience
BMW 328i - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Dublin, California
Richard was an outstanding mechanic. After he arrived, the first thing he did after taking the initial pictures of the car is an assessment into what work was asked. He quickly verified that I did not need brake fluid and my front brakes even-though it affects his personal commitments and time, which I think is highly appreciate and thorough professional. He was detailed oriented - took time to make sure that all the issue are fixed. He paid attention to detail in overall car assessment- he goes above and beyond. He was also teaching me through the process which I found highly educational and appreciate him providing the information ensuring and making me comfortable what he was doing and explaining patiently all the questions that was thrown at him. When he works - you know he's highly skilled and experienced and knows his stuff. He is highly experienced. He is a "Master" mechanic in true sense :)

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