Do you fancy repairing small problems with your vehicle yourself? Have you ever wished you had a mechanic on standby to give advice? Your wish has been granted and the mechanic’s name is Google…
The internet has brought the expertise of thousands of people together and is available at your fingertips. Many people out there are doing us a tremendous favour by describing a solution to a problem in detail, including photographs and even a video if you are lucky. I have become so dependent on the Google Mechanic that I would not attempt an unknown job before seeking his advice first as this has saved me a lot of time and money in the past.
I have compiled a shortlist of tips on how to use the Google Mechanic search to your advantage:
- Include the make and model of your vehicle in the search (remember that the model name might be different around the world);
- Type in key words to your problem – try to keep the search phrase as short as possible (less than five words is best);
- From the search results look at the most appropriate links – forums are always good as well as YouTube videos;
- If you know which component has failed you can search under Google Images to see the location of the part as well as sometimes the link back to a website that would describe the removal process;
- Practice makes perfect and after a couple of searches you will quickly be able to get to the information you need.
As an example I had a problem with my Golf 4 TDI’s glovebox lid that would not close (latch not functioning). By typing the words “golf glovebox latch broken” into Google it returned the following excellent link:
The solution was described in detail and I managed to fix the lid on my car in under 30 minutes with only a self-tapping screw and washer needed. As the lid is a “closed unit”, I probably would not have had the courage to force it open as explained in the link. No harm was done and you could not even tell that the lid had been opened after the operation! Cheers to the guy on the vwvortex forum for his help.