The labor guide measures time as an average between the time taken by a novice and the time taken by an experienced technician who has performed the task many times. The objective of this procedure is to show you how to understand and use a labor guide to calculate time and cost for a service procedure.
Part 1. Preparation and safety
- Understand and use a labor guide to calculate time and cost for a service procedure.
Whenever you perform a task in the workshop you must use personal protective clothing and equipment that is appropriate for the task and which conforms to your local safety regulations and policies. Among other items, this may include:
- Work clothing - such as coveralls and steel-capped footwear
- Eye protection - such as safety glasses and face masks
- Ear protection - such as earmuffs and earplugs
- Hand protection - such as rubber gloves and barrier cream
- Respiratory equipment - such as face masks and valved respirators
If you are not certain what is appropriate or required, ask your supervisor.
- Make sure that you understand and observe all legislative and personal safety procedures when carrying out the following tasks. If you are unsure of what these are, ask your supervisor.
Points to note
- Labor guides are used by workshops as a guide to the amount of time a set task should take to perform.
- The labor guide measures time as an average between the time taken by a novice and the time taken by an experienced technician who has performed the task many times.
- A workshop can determine a fair charge for any given service task by using a labor guide.
- The information contained within a labor guide is referenced in the same manner as a service manual or repair manual.
Part 2: Step-by-step instruction
- Understand information required
Decide what information it is that you need to know. About the job and about the vehicle. In this example, the job is to replace the front brake disc pads. Make sure you know the make, model and year of manufacture of the vehicle.
- Locate the appropriate labor guide
We need to be able to estimate the cost or charge for the labor to complete the job. To do this we use a Labor Guide
- Understand the structure of the guide
Turn to the Contents Page. This Guide is divided up into cars, four wheel drive, and light commercial vehicles. Then by Vehicle Systems and Operations. This Operations breakdown also serves to define the sub tasks involved in each operation. Vehicle Manufacturers, Models, and Engine Type then appear as columns in the body of the manual. It also has indexes to operation numbers, indexes to vehicle makes and models, and introductory notes on: guidelines for using the manual, the meaning of terms and calculating labor charges. Other Labor Guide publishers may have different layouts and information, such as skill levels required for the operations described. They may also cover heavier duty commercial vehicles
- Locate the correct section
Find the section for the appropriate manufacturer and model, using the indexes to vehicle makes and models.
- Locate the information
Turn to this section, and find the page on Disc Brakes, then find the subsection on replacing or renewing the front disc brake pads. This tells you the length of time for the operation on one wheel, so you must double it for servicing the brakes on both front wheels. Find the correct column for the vehicle model and engine type, and note the length of time to complete this operation. The length of time is usually in hours and tenths of an hour. So 0.6 hours represents 36 minutes.
- Check for additional information
Note that the guide indicates to add the time for bleeding the brake system if needed. So find the time for bleeding the brake system in case you need to add it to your calculation.
- Calculate the time and cost
We now have the correct figure to estimate the charge for the service.