Why this book?
There are countless blogs, books, and manuals on car repair. So why this book, why here? So, what is a wikibook? What do I stand to gain from reading, writing, and editing a wikibook?
- Wikibooks are free as in speech because they use a Creative Commons License. This makes their information more "durable" than a commercial, copyright-only book.
- Someone may have a very nice auto repair blog up with a great post on diagnosing whether a new alternator is needed, but tomorrow they could decide to stop paying the hosting for that site or to delete that post.
- What's more, now that the website or post is down, it's usefulness as a teaching tool is lost forever. If you re-post the information on the site, especially of a commercial blog, the owner might come after you.
- With a wikibook, if this wikibook ever goes down or gets lost, or the text you liked gets edited in a way you don't like, or even if it does not and the wikibook is as great as ever, you can copy the text and share it and modify it, and publish a version modified however you'd like. So long as you give credit to the other original authors and allow other people the same rights with your modified version. This way, the information is designed to be freely sharable. If this wikibook becomes very good, you could print out a page and pass it around, or even sell it as a cheap packaged book on the street, and it would be legal.
- With a wikibook, you are reading and contributing to a body of knowledge that cannot be taken away from the public just because one of the authors decides they'd like to keep it away from people now (for whatever reason, financial etc.) or lock it up on a website filled with ads and spam. This is a book whose information can always be used as a resource to help out the public.
- Wikibooks can conveniently and constantly be improved and updated.
- The auto industry is a constantly changing and developing field. Most of it stays the same over the years, but there are always crucial changes to car design, and always differently designed models coming out. It is for this reason that _any_ book that is to remain relevant in the field of auto repair needs to be able to be updated.
- When an error is found in a typically published, copyrighted book, all you can hope to do is e-mail the author and hope they release a new version. Until then, all copies of the book will have that error. With wikibooks, when you find an error, you can easily fix it if you can demonstrate that the information you're replacing it with has the evidence behind it.
- If you find this book inadequate when learning about auto-repair, feel free to improve and adjust and build upon it while you are in the process of learning. This is a community project!
- At the time of writing, with the exception of a few sites, there are very few good, free, resources on auto repair foundations.
- There are, without doubt, many resources available on the internet, and a handful of these really do provide some nice basics. Of these handful, the fact that they are restricted creative property means they could be changed, disappeared, edited, loaded with ads, misleading information, or put behind a paywall.
- Nonetheless, there are some good references on the internet, and this book can, as a living online ebook, act as a hub for the more navigable, unique, and established resources for specialties of auto repair.
Follow these links to find out more about what the site wikibooks is, and why content that is free-as-in-speech is a great thing for education worldwide, though it may come off as a bit unorthodox at first.
There is too much information on auto repair to ever store in this one book. The point of this section is to not list every external resource offline or online ever. It is to list free resources that are popular or unusual in their usefulness, efficacy, or insightful take on the subject of auto repairs. It is also to list classic resources so you can understand any references people make to them (some of these may not be free).
An excellent source of information is blog sites that are vehicle specific.
What tools are needed and how to use them
Reliable diagnostic scanner (not code reader)
Both Metric and Standard Sized Tools
Fluid Containers for recycling (do not dispose of automotive fluids down drains or in public water systems)
Repair Manual for the vehicle, online or in print
Phone Numbers for local parts vendors and/or Dealership Service Department, which is very handy when looking for OE Part Numbers
Specific car models
Where to get owners manuals
The business of auto repairs
Breaking into the industry
Not getting ripped off
ASK FOR REFERENCES! Any decent and honest mechanic has NO problem providing reliable references when asked for them.
Labor Time and Labor Pricing