The computer network in your car performs a wide range of critical operating functions. As a driver, everything may seem simple, but underneath is an incredibly complex system of software, wires, and controllers. The automotive experts at AA Auto Tech in St. Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota can help you with all your vehicle computer needs. We employ certified technicians that understand maintenance and service of the common components and utilities of your car’s computer system. Let’s examine this technology in more detail.


How the CAN Works

All of your car’s components are connected to a Controller Area Network (CAN). The CAN, or CAN bus protocol, is a network of computers communicating digital information about an automobile. The CAN of a car is comparable to the nervous system of the human body. The protocol is what allows each control unit to “talk” to each other about the various current states of the vehicle. An auto repair shop with certified mechanics trained in the inner-workings of CAN technology provides better maintenance services for the consumer.


Electronic Control Units

Throughout the car, you will find a variety of computers called Electronic Control Units, or ECUs. The CAN bus network allows all ECUs to listen and broadcast information simultaneously. It is in this functionality that provides the ability for detection of motion, steering, voltage, pressure, and emissions. The ECUs also provide control for a specific feature such as a power window or airbag deployment.


Legacy and Modern Electronic Components

Before modern cars of the mid-80s adopted the CAN bus network, new electrical systems connected to the system with separate wires. This inevitably created a large physical wiring infrastructure. Using a sophisticated network like CAN lowers the cost of new features by reducing the number of physical wires. This overall provides better reliability over time. With the advent of CAN technology, manufacturers can fix bugs or add features by simply plugging into the car’s data port and uploading new software.


Digital Self Diagnostics

Your vehicle’s computer system allows your car to self diagnose when problems arise. When the car is running, ECUs will perform self-checks. The ECU broadcasts a signal that includes a troubleshooting code that illuminates an information light anytime a problem has been detected. Your automotive mechanic can easily pull the exact code from your data port in order to easily diagnose the issue and provide an appropriate resolution. This technology has reduced the overall cost of auto repair and maintenance, ensuring faster and more accurate diagnosis.


Auto Repair Services in Hastings, Minnesota

Have your automobile’s electrical and computer components serviced by the pros. AA Auto Tech employs ASE certified mechanics to provide the best auto repair and maintenance for your vehicle in the Twin Cities metro area. Our professional car mechanics perform engine repair, brake jobs, tune-ups, transmission service, and more. We are also a full-service oil change shop. Call us today at 651-437-2218, or you can message us on our contact page.