ASE automotive electrical test

It is time for me to take my ASE automotive electrical test again. Every five years we are required to re certify in each individual area. To me the automotive electrical test is one of the more difficult to pass.

Picture 25 year medallion

25 years of auto repair


Even though I have more than 25 years experience and this will be the sixth time I will be taking the test I still find it difficult to pass. The weird part is that when it comes to diagnosis and repair this is one of my strongest areas of the automobile.

One reason for this is that the ASE automotive electrical test is very heavy on theory. An understanding of ohms law and other basic electrical and electronic knowledge is required to answer individual test questions that appear on both the re-certification test and the full-blown 55 question test.


This may include things that you actually do not need to know when working on the actual car. This is why studying is something I have to do to pass. It’s been a long time since I sat in a classroom and discussed OHMS Law.

Understanding automotive electrical

One reason why some people may find it difficult to understand electricity is because this is something you can’t see with your eyes. Understanding how electricity works will not only help you diagnose automotive problems but can be applied to other electrical systems such as homes and marine applications.

One of the more interesting facts about electricity is that it is not only found on automobiles and in houses but also in the human body. It is how our brain communicates with other areas of the body. One of the most feared forms of electricity seen in nature would be lightning. A lightning bolt is so powerful that you can actually see it with your eyes.

Learning about automotive electrical systems

Picture of automotive electronics

automotive electronics

When you break it down electricity is the actual flow of electrons. To have a continuous flow of electricity you need three things to happen. You need to have an excess of electrons in one place, and a lack of electrons in another place. Then all you need is a path between these two places and the electrons will flow naturally.

Although you may not need to understand down to the electron to diagnose automotive systems it is the basis of how they operate. On my you fix cars website I have a complete section dedicated to electricity. There I have about 10 pages on the subject that you may find helpful for a basic understanding of automotive electrical systems.

If you’re interested in taking the ASE automotive electrical test I also have a page with some of the latest ASE study guides. For more information about common auto repairs click on this next link to head back to the homepage for this blog about auto repair.


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