AB automotive

helping you to own a car for less

About Me


I am a Red Seal Automotive Service Technician professionally working in automotive industry since 1993. I have been working in independent shops and dealerships in Europe and later in Canada and acquired Master Technician certifications from Peugeot, Nissan and Ford. I also have got all Ford technical service specialties. My experience includes working on different makes and models starting from late 1960-ies and all the way up to the most modern automobiles thanks to the very diverse automotive market I was exposed during my career. Continue reading “About Me”

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What I Can Do For You


I have some free time between my working shifts in a dealership so I decided I can do some of the work I like doing most. I got a van to bring my tools where they needed and registered small business under a name AB automotive.

Now, whenever you have a problem with your car or truck electrics or electronics, have engine light on, driveability or starting issues, have some other warning lights, radio or heater not working or any electrical gremlins infestation issues in general – I run this business to help you (and make some extra income in the process, of course). I have been doing this kind of work for years, on-board electrics and electronics is my favorite field of work in automotive and I am good at it, better then most other techs out there. Continue reading “What I Can Do For You”

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How I Am Doing My Work


AB automotive is my third enterprise in auto repair industry. I have been running small enterprise with similar business model in Ireland for three years before I moved to Alberta in 2012. Between 1996 and 2006 I had my own small shop in Latvia specializing on automotive security systems,car audio and electrical systems repairs.

I like dealing with customers directly and miss this part of my work while working in the dealership. Feeling of being recognized for doing a good job worth a lot and there are plenty of opportunities to get this feeling when you run a small business (providing that you know what you doing) Continue reading “How I Am Doing My Work”

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How Much I Will Charge You


This one is probably the most difficult question to answer when you starting business and then when you having your first communication with new customer. Almost every customer asks first “What is your hourly rate?”. In short my answer is: I don’t have one. Continue reading “How Much I Will Charge You”

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What I Can NOT Do For You


I do not work on any Ford, Lincoln or Mercury vehicles outside of my hours of employment and / or outside my place of employment.

This is because I have an employment at Ford dealership and I have no intention to create conflict of interests between me and my employer.

The only exception to this policy applies to anti-theft and car audio systems installations. For any other type of work on Ford vehicles you are welcome to visit me at my place of employment, feel free to contact me for details in this case. Continue reading “What I Can NOT Do For You”

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About This Website


To make and host this website I use blogging platform. The idea behind creating this website is to provide more information about myself and share some of my thoughts and experiences. I have not employed any professional help to make this website so it is far from being perfect. It is pretty much permanently in “work in progress” state. Continue reading “About This Website”

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Little Nice Touches

It is so nice not to work under pressure having time to pay attention to every little detail of the job. Take this job for example – replacing two leaking axle shaft seals on some Toyota. Continue reading “Little Nice Touches”



Paleontology is our favorite science here in Grande Prairie, isn’t it? I have to do some of it every day too. Continue reading “Paleontology”

Why I Don’t Like The Telephone


Imagine me dropping a transmission from the car, balancing 200 pounds unit on a transmission jack above my head, with my hands dirty and fluid leaking on my face because I forgot or was too lazy to drain it first (or most likely thought that fluid level is below driveshaft seals so it wouldn’t leak)

Imagine me bent threefold and upside down under the dash with hot soldering iron in one hand and trying to hold two ends of broken wire and a solder wire with another hand (the task that actually asks me to grow two additional hands)

As per Murphy’s law at this very moment phone goes off! The first word that I would say next second starts with “F” and ends with “K” and comes with lots of heat and excitement. No, this is not a “firetruck” ;-). Continue reading “Why I Don’t Like The Telephone”

“We Can Fix Anything”


It is nice to advertise with a line like this. I did that when I was young and green and just started my first shop. Two decades later I learned to know that this statement needs to be extended. Continue reading ““We Can Fix Anything””

Profit Driven Society

can't be eaten

I don’t want to go into deep discussion here on topic of profit driven society. There are better resources and discussion boards on the internet for that. I like to make profit for myself too. I like even more to make profit without applying any effort or profit disproportionately high in relation to efforts applied to make it. Continue reading “Profit Driven Society”

Note On Technical Information

Technical information is one of the most important tools for diagnostic technician. I would not be far off even if I say it is THE most important tool now. Continue reading “Note On Technical Information”

Free Diagnostics

I am very happy to see that times of “free diagnostics” are slowly but surely going away.

Few years ago when I was posting on the same issue on another website it was super easy to find a header picture for illustration. Today I struggled to do the same, wow! :-)

Instead I found this one – perfect illustration of true value of “free diagnostics”


“Free Diagnostics” was one of the worst marketing ideas in this business. Continue reading “Free Diagnostics”

Diagnostics – Dealing With Unknown

When customer calls and asks to change timing belt, do transmission flush or replace balljoint there is very slim chance to come across something unknown or unexpected. Even if you never done such a job on some particular model you can read through the procedure in shop manual (or even watch video on YouTube) and get a fair idea of what it is like. You can come across some seized bolt or stripped thread but any other surprises are quite unlikely. For the job like this I can give an estimate (I mean no-obligation-rough-estimate) without even looking at the car. If you need written-in-stone-quote  than I have to inspect your vehicle first, but in most cases it would be quick and free of charge inspection.

Continue reading “Diagnostics – Dealing With Unknown”

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