Hybrid Repair Costa Mesa
Why should you trust Fitzgeralds Auto Care Center to maintain or repair your hybrid vehicle?
Your biggest concern is most likely the mechanic’s ability to maintain, diagnose, and repair your hybrid vehicle competently. We’ve gone out of our way to make sure we have the tools, training, parts, and experience necessary to maintain hybrids and repair hybrids.
Hybrids have been on the road for many years now, and not only have we been servicing them, but we have also been performing heavy duty hybrid diagnosis and major hybrid repairs. We have been seeking out the toughest hybrid repair challenges early, so when we start to see problems with the “normal wear & tear” crowd, we’ll be ready.
When you bring your hybrid to us for hybrid maintenance or hybrid repair, you can rest assured that it will be maintained or repaired correctly with the proper parts and specialty fluids, not only to maintain the warranty, but also to keep it running long into the future. You can also feel confident that we will be able to diagnose and repair your hybrid when it breaks down.
Why not just take your hybrid to the dealer?
Most of the dealerships will provide very competent hybrid service. However, we believe we can equal their level of expertise, and charge substantially less money for the same services and repairs. Our labor rate is $92 per hour were as many dealerships in our area have a labor rate of $150.
Myths about repairing Hybrid Vehicles.
When the hybrids first came out, most of the technical information we heard came from a guy who knew a guy, who supposedly knew about hybrids. We heard many reasons for not buying a hybrid; stories of electrocutions, $7000 battery packs that would only last a few years, people stranded on the road unable to get a tow because a special hazmat endorsement was required to tow a hybrid, toxic battery packs that negated any benefit to the environment gained by the improved fuel economy, horrible burns caused by battery acid spray after an accident. And we could also imagine many reasons not to work on hybrids, chief among them, inability to get information and inability to get special tools.
As it turns out, none of the rumors were true. All of the information available to the dealers is available to the independent mechanic at reasonable cost. We have invested heavily in training, information, and tooling and we want to be your full service hybrid mechanic auto center.
Hybrid tooling vs. hybrid knowledge
The biggest obstacle to repairing hybrids is not purchase of special tools and equipment. Most tools necessary to do most hybrid repairs are already in a well equipped mechanic’s tool box. Big rubber insulating gloves are required for safety when disengaging the battery pack and testing for power prior to repairs, but other than that, there are very few hybrid specific tools that will be required on a regular basis. The biggest obstacle is knowledge. It’s very hard to diagnose a system you don’t understand. It’s also easy to do damage to yourself or the car with improper repair techniques. That being said, most of the skills, methods, and systems in a hybrid car are already familiar to a skilled mechanic. Electric motor / generator theory is well understood by a good “gas” mechanic. Computer control is certainly nothing new. Internal combustion engines are still found on the hybrids. In fact most of the familiar automotive systems — brakes, steering, suspension, drivetrain, engine management, heating and air conditioning, are still on the hybrid and still operate in much the same way as they do on any modern car. There is a relatively small amount of training needed to make a good gas car mechanic into a good hybrid mechanic. I think it’s similar to when a computer programmer learns a new language: he already knows how to program, he just needs learn the differences in the new language. Both Honda and Toyota have excellent subscription based websites with all of the information we need to understand and diagnose their cars.