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When Is DIY Car Repair Off the Table?

You probably aren’t going to destroy your vehicle or injure yourself replacing wiper blades, but there are a lot of repairs that can be dangerous to yourself and the vehicle. If some repairs aren’t done properly, you can injure yourself while replacing the part or while driving. Here are some repairs that are better left to the experts.

You probably aren’t going to destroy your vehicle or injure yourself replacing wiper blades, but there are a lot of repairs that can be dangerous to yourself and the vehicle. If some repairs aren’t done properly, you can injure yourself while replacing the part or while driving. Here are some repairs that are better left to the experts.

Safety-related repairs
Working on any safety system on the car must be approached with caution. This especially includes the brake, ABS, airbag, or steering systems. Failure to correctly repair these systems cannot only injure you, but others on the road, and that's not worth the savings you're trying to achieve. Suspension systems are particularly dangerous because they are under a lot of pressure due to the springs, and they require special tools to fix. If you have any reservations about working on these systems, we strongly suggest you take your car to a professional.


Additional repairs you should never attempt at home

Timing belt replacement
We have seen too many DIYers damage their engine when performing this repair incorrectly, so be very careful

Transmission maintenance or repair
If something goes wrong here, you can damage your transmission, which can be very costly

Overheating 
One of the easiest ways to do serious damage to your engine is to let it overheat, so rather than risk it, take your car into the shop to deal with an overheating issue

Replacing suspension parts 
As mentioned above, proceed with extreme caution and make sure you have the right tools

Fuel system components
Failure to properly reconnect fuel lines or components can cause fuel leaks and possible fires

Check Engine Light
Many things can trigger the Check Engine Light, so this one is best left to the pros

Additional items to be aware of

Never open a cooling system when the engine is hot, not even to check the fluid level, period. The fluid is near boiling temperature while the engine is hot, so do not touch it until it has sat for at least 30 minutes. Do not work on an engine that is running. There are a lot of moving parts and it only takes a second to seriously injure yourself.

Continue to Part 5 - The Trouble with Trouble Codes

 

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