New legislation may force automakers to provide repair information

A bill called the Right to Repair Act was recently introduced in the House of Representatives in a bid to increase the distribution of information needed to properly repair vehicles.

It would require that automakers make tools and service information, especially those that relate to the computers that increasingly control the inner works of automobiles, available to independent service centers at the same time it is provided to new car dealerships.

“Without the Right to Repair Act, millions of motorists would be forced back to fewer dealers for service” said Ray Pohlman, Coalition for Auto Repair Equality president. “Consumers spend thousands of dollars to purchase their vehicle and should not be told where they should obtain those repairs by the manufacturer.”

Those in the market for a used car may benefit from this service as well, since the information would lead to better quality care at local auto body shops even after a car warranty is up.

Car makers may appreciate language in the bill that protects proprietary information and trade secrets, although that information would be publicly available once it is distributed to the dealers.

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