The Garage Glossary – Understanding ‘Mechanic Speak’
At Queens Park Garage, we pride ourselves on our approachable customer service and transparency when it comes to repairing our customer’s vehicles. In a recent survey by RAC, it was found that 56% of those asked (2,300 people) said that they struggle to understand the language and terms used by mechanics and garage staff when taking their vehicles for a service or to be fixed.
Many drivers also stated that they felt uneasy going to a garage they were not familiar with and some even said that garages have carried out work without telling them! We always like to be as clear as possible when your vehicle is in our care and will always let you know when we notice jobs that need mending as high priority and may have gone unnoticed.
Jargon Buster Guide to Vehicle Terms
In light of the recent survey, we have put together a jargon-busting list of terms that will help drivers be ‘in the know’ about various issues that mechanics may flag up when you take your vehicle in for repairs.
ABS – Anti-lock braking system
A common feature in modern cars which prevents your wheels from locking when you break hard, which is much safer and helps to maintain grip.
ADAS – Advanced driver assistance systems
Technology which some modern cars have to help detect an accident before you have it and is designed to assist drivers and increase safety levels when driving.
AGM – Absorbent Glass Mat
Batteries which are used in stop/start engines and are thought to be more reliable than regular lead batteries, though they are not suitable for all vehicles.
ALKS – Automated Lane Keeping Systems
A type of ADAS system, that can steer a vehicle and keep it stable in your chosen driving lane.
A connecting rod or ‘conrod’ in a combustion engine which powers the piton movement back and forth.
An engine part supported by the engine block, with the engine's main bearings allowing the crankshaft to rotate within the block.
Part of the suspension system which help to reduce the bumpy up and down motion when travelling. They are also known as ‘shocks’ or shock absorbers.
DPF - Diesel Particulate Filter
The Diesel Particulate Filter is something featured in the exhausts of most new diesel vehicles from 2005 onwards, which helps to reduce emissions. It needs cleaning regularly, a service offered at QPG.
EHB – Electro-Hydraulic Brake System
Often seen in electric and hybrid cars, using sensors to regulate braking control and improve brake power and safety at shorter distances. Read our previous blog on things that affect braking distance.
EML – Engine Management Light
The dreaded light which comes on, on the dash to tell you there is a fault with the engine. Sometimes also known as the ECU light or a MIL, malfunction indicator lamp.
A term used to describe when your steering is too loose and is not moving the wheels correctly. Read our previous blog on how to test if your steering is becoming loose.
An engine part, often attached to one end of the crankshaft, in order to store rotational energy and maintain a more consistent rotational speed as the crankshaft receives energy from the connecting rods as a series of pulses.
A part of the engine which is positioned between the cylinders at the top of the engine, which prevent other engine fluids leaking onto parts that it shouldn’t. If you notice white smoke or white milky oil, or your vehicle is overheating, you should get the head gasket looked at straight away.
When your engine cylinders are not working correctly, causing the engine to not start. This can be caused by the fuel to oxygen ratio not being correct and can release more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than is necessary whilst also causing your vehicle to run less efficiently.
Also known as the electronic control module or unit. If the module is faulty, your EML light will come on, though it may also be hiding other malfunctions so worth getting checked as soon as the light indicates there is an issue.
Tyre pressure monitoring system – Does what it says on the tin. Check out our previous article for more on how to check and maintain good car tyre pressure.
The direction that your tyres are facing or set to. As you travel, there are various things that can affect the position of your wheels and put them out of balance, such as pot holes or wear and tear over time and from different road surfaces.
You should get this checked regularly to ensure that it does not cause further damage to your vehicle and also cause you to spend more on fuel due to reduced efficiency! Find out more about Wheel Alignment and Wheel Balancing services at QPG.
Servicing and MOT’s in Bournemouth
If your vehicle is due for an MOT or service and you live in Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole and surrounding areas, be sure to use our online booking form to request an appointment at Queens Park Garage as soon as possible. Due to the MOT extension during 2020, we have had a high volume of appointments booked recently so we advise that you get in touch as soon as possible to reserve your slot. You can also call us on 01202 216104 and speak to our friendly and knowledgeable team.