How to Handle a Technical Service Bulletin After Auto Technology School

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Keeping vehicles safe and well-maintained is one of an auto mechanic’s primary responsibilities. While routine inspections and repairs can help a car stay in good working order, there are also other factors that can help you stay updated on a car’s condition, as well as help you diagnose specific problems you may encounter.

A Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) is a form of communication that automotive manufacturers share to notify mechanics of part updates, describe new service procedures, and inform automotive workers about any potential design, engineering, or manufacturing defects. Although it is similar to a recall, TSBs can involve reports that aren’t related to the safety components of a car, such as air conditioning systems, radios, or paint blemishes.
If you’re interested in starting a career in the automotive industry, read on to find out what you should know about technical service bulletins, and how they can help you ensure your clients are driving the safest vehicle possible.

Why Is a Technical Service Bulletin so Important for Automotive Mechanics?

Although a vehicle goes through rigorous safety and performance tests before it leaves the factory, driving the car in reality can result in unforeseen circumstances or malfunctioning equipment, which affects its performance and overall longevity. In order to make sure these issues are properly addressed and corrected, the automaker then issues a technical service bulletin.

Typically, a TSB is meant to advise service technicians on how to diagnose and repair a reoccurring issue, as well as list the specific tools, techniques, and relevant parts involved in the repair. It also can include other issues such as updated repair procedures, maintenance requirements, and recommended tire pressure or lubricants.

Auto mechanics can use TSBs to stay alert and prepare for potential vehicle problems
Auto mechanics can use TSBs to stay alert and prepare for potential vehicle problems

A TSB is particularly useful after your automotive technology course if you’ve exhausted your options trying to fix a frustrating problem. If you know you’ve recently received a TSB regarding a particular car model, for example, you may want to read through it and see if it applies to the problem; if it does, then you can save yourself the time, energy, and headache and fix it according to the auto manufacturer’s suggestions.

Understanding the Different Components of a TSB After Auto Technology School

There are a variety of ways you may receive or be notified of a technical service bulletin. While one of the most common methods is through direct contact from the auto manufacturer, they are also listed on the automotive company’s website, and can additionally be found by searching the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).

A TSB will typically be formatted with a list of automotive manufacturers, followed by the subject and affected models. It then describes the specific complaint or problem, as well as the recommended procedures to repair it, which you can gain more experience with in auto technology school. If new or updated parts are required, the TSB may also include a list of the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts and their relevant information.

Students at ATC can use their training to fix problems they may see in a TSB
Students at ATC can use their training to fix problems they may see in a TSB

Even though you may receive a TSB regarding a malfunctioning part, that doesn’t always mean you will encounter that specific problem in the cars you work on. Rather, you should use the TSB to stay updated and alert to potential issues should they arise.

Are you interested in finding out where a career in the automotive industry can take you?

Contact Automotive Training Centres for more information about our automotive technology program in Toronto.

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