Wrench Tales with Brandon Steckler, Ep. 4: Michael Guenther

June 5, 2024
Not one, two, or three, but FOUR faulty power door lock actuators. In this episode, see how Brandon Steckler and Michael Guenther create a test plan and prove it with almost no disassembly!

Not one, two, or three, but four worn/faulty door lock actuator motors! What are the odds… Slim-to-none, right?

Join Motor Age Technical Editor, Brandon Steckler and good buddy, Michael Guenther (owner of Downtown Auto Service in Crofton, NE) as they discuss a strange power door lock concern on a 2009 Chevrolet Impala.

Michael is no novice when it comes to diagnostics. In fact, he has been featured in the pages of Motor Age Magazine’s February 2024 issue.  Logic and past experiences would lead most techs to hunt feverishly for an underlying fault in the vehicle’s electrical system.  But, using a Snap-on Zues digital storage oscilloscope and amp probe, what Michael discovered was not expected at all.

Listen in on the conversation in this episode of Wrench Tales as Michael and Brandon work together to discuss their diagnostic approach. Learn how they used logic to determine which tests to perform, in what order, and where on the vehicle to conduct the testing that (if the customer had chosen to pursue) would’ve led to a nearly $2000 repair!

About the Author

Brandon Steckler | Motor Age Technical Editor

Brandon began his career in Northampton County Community College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where he was a student of GM’s Automotive Service Educational program. In 2001, he graduated top of his class and earned the GM Leadership award for his efforts. He later began working as a technician at a Saturn dealership in Reading, Pennsylvania, where he quickly attained Master Technician status. He later transitioned to working with Hondas, where he aggressively worked to attain another Master Technician status.

Always having a passion for a full understanding of system/component functionality, he rapidly earned a reputation for deciphering strange failures at an efficient pace and became known as an information specialist among the staff and peers at the dealership. In search of new challenges, he transitioned away from the dealership and to the independent world, where he specialized in diagnostics and driveability. 

Today, he is an instructor with both Carquest Technical Institute and Worldpac Training Institute. Along with beta testing for Automotive Test Solutions, he develops curriculum/submits case studies for educational purposes. Through Steckler Automotive Technical Services, LLC., Brandon also provides telephone and live technical support, as well as private training, for technicians all across the world.

Brandon holds ASE certifications A1-A9 as well as C1 (Service Consultant). He is certified as an Advanced Level Specialist in L1 (Advanced Engine Performance), L2 (Advanced Diesel Engine Performance), L3 (Hybrid/EV Specialist), L4 (ADAS) and xEV-Level 2 (Technician electrical safety).

He contributes weekly to Facebook automotive chat groups, has authored several books and classes, and truly enjoys traveling across the globe to help other technicians attain a level of understanding that will serve them well throughout their careers.