ONLINE COMPUTER-AIDED TROUBLESHOOTING IN AUTOMOBILE (A Case Study of   Mag-Ben Automotive Technology Limited)  


The world of I.T is taking over everything on this planet and the use of computers in our day to day activity is one of the major achievements of this century. Computer can be used for virtually everything we humans can do and it makes life easy for us.

Computer Aided Troubleshooting in automobile is the use of computer to help individuals or automobile engineers in detecting faults and providing them with the appropriate solution. This can only be achieved by building an expert system. One of the reasons for this research is to preserve the knowledge of a leading expert in the field of study after his death.

Also, this expert system will make junior workers rise to equal level with the engineers where there are no enough leading engineers.


Title page             




Table of Contents               




1.1Aims of the study   

1.2Significance of the study   


1.4Scope & Limitation

1.5 Organization of the project  

1.6Definition of terms used



2.0History of  Mag-Ben Automotive Technology Limited   

2.1Organization chart

2.2Expert System

2.3Advantages & Disadvantages Of Expert System

2.4The World Wide Web

2.5Web Server


3.0Analysis Of The Existing System

3.1Description Of The Existing System

3.2Problems of The Existing System

3.3Description Of The Proposed System

3.4Advantages The Proposed System

3.5Disadvantages Of The Proposed System


4.0System Design

4.1System Specification

4.2System Implementation

4.3Choice Of Programming Language

4.4System Requirement

4.5Change over Techniques

4.6Documentation & System Evaluation

4.7System Testing






Program Design Interface

Flow Chart

Program Codes



Automated troubleshooting as the name implies is the use of computer to help the automobile engineers in detecting faults and providing solution to the fault detected in a vehicle. It can also be said to be the use of computer to troubleshoot in an automobile industry.

This can only be achieved by building an Expert System. An Expert System is software that uses a knowledge base of human expertise for problem solving, or clarifies uncertainties where normally one or more human experts would need to be consulted. 

Expert systems were introduced by researchers in the Stanford Heuristic Programming Project, including the "father of expert systems" Edward Feigenbaum. Principal contributors to the technology were Bruce Buchanan, Randall Davis, Carli Scott, and others at Stanford. 

Expert systems are most valuable to organizations that have a high-level of know-how experience and expertise that cannot be easily transferred to other members. 

They are designed to carry the intelligence and information found in the intellect of experts and provide this knowledge to other members of the organization for problem-solving purposes.

This project will take into consideration, most of the common faults associated with automobile and ways to rectify such faults. This project is a step on the right direction to get the automobile industries highly computerized.


The automobile engineers have a number of problems in finding faults and rectifying the detected faults, this is due to the fact that all the processes involved are done manually. The main objective of this project is to create an online computerization of an automobile industry. The main aims include:

⦁ To save time: A lot of time is conserved when using computer 

⦁ To reduce or minimize fatigue: Human beings experience fatigue due to overwork, illness and their state of mind and this may cause delay but when an expert system is built, such experiences does not occur as long as the basic requirements for the environment are provided

⦁ To make work easier to learn and understandable

⦁ To make work faster and highly efficient.


The significance of this study is to let the individuals, or automobile engineers have adequate understanding of what an expert system is and this has been introduced to various fields. By this, a simple but descriptive explanation to guide engineers on how to detect fault in an automobile and provide the appropriate solution to the fault detected, and also give hints on maintaining an automobile. This project is presented in such a way that the technical faults that occur in a vehicle can be corrected successfully and faster.


The means of collecting data used in this project was in four ways:

⦁ Interview: Interviewing some of the senior workers was carried out to collect information on the importance of computerized troubleshooting system and other information needed for the study.

⦁ Direct Observation: Observing directly activities in the workshop and arriving at a meaningful conclusion.

⦁ Internet: Information was also obtained from automobile websites.

⦁ Bibliographical Reference: References were made to different textbooks and automobile manuals that gave more explanation of the subject matter in question.

In other to achieve the aims earlier mentioned above, an online computerized system is designed to detect and correct faults, the program developed to implement the system is written in PHP, MYSQL and HTML.


This project will focus mainly on the computerization of an automobile industry i.e. how the computer system can be used in troubleshooting a BMW vehicle and give maintenance tips to the owner or driver. This can only be developed by building an expert system. 

This system developed is applicable in the troubleshooting of the different components in a vehicle. The computer can never be an engineer but it can serve as a helper for people or engineers to diagnose faults. It is obvious that computer behaves like human being but it is not. From this, one can easily see that there is a limitation to what the computer system can do in terms of automobile services.


This project is grouped into five chapters. The aspect Organization of the project is the description of each chapter contents.

  Chapter one talks about the general introduction of this topic, the objectives of the study, the method used in collecting information, significance of the study and definitions of some used terms.

  Chapter two deals with the literature review of the project. This chapter contains a brief history of the case study, an overview of an engine analyzer, details of an expert system and why an expert system is used for this project or in other fields.

Chapter three deals with all about the analysis of the existing system, problems encountered when using the existing procedure. It also describes the new or proposed system and the advantages of using the proposed system over the existing system.

Chapter four gives details of the system design which defines the detailed design and specification of a processing system to carry out the already defined system objectives and requirement. It also talks about the implementation techniques used, the choice of the programming language used with reasons, maintenance and how the new system should be used.

  Chapter five lastly gives the summary, recommendation and conclusion of the entire project.


Expert System: This is an embodiment with a computer that uses a knowledge base of human expertise for problem solving, or clarifies uncertainties where normally one or more human experts would need to be consulted. This expert system represents the expertise knowledge as data or rules within the computer, these rules and data can be called upon when needed to solve problems. 

Conventionally computer programs can perform tasks using conventional decision making logic containing little knowledge other than the basic algorithm for solving specific problem and necessary boundary conditions. This program knowledge is often embedded as part of the programming code so that as the knowledge changes, the program has to be changed and then rebuilt. The knowledge based system collect the small fragments of human know-how into a knowledge base which is used to reason through a problem using the appropriate knowledge. A different problem within the domain of the knowledge base can be solved using the same program without reprogramming. The ability of the system to explain the reasoning process through back-traces and to handle levels of confidence and uncertainty provides additional features that conventional programming doesn’t handle.

Troubleshooting: This is a logical, technical and systematic method or way of locating or detecting faults in a system and gives appropriate solution to the fault detected.

Diagnostic: This is the decision reached after the engineer has identified the problem of the vehicle from its sign.

Maintenance: This can be defined as the technical and corresponding administrative actions that are necessary to keep an automobile component in a good condition in order to perform or work in its standard functions. This is done in order to prolong the lifespan of an automobile




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