We've all had things break down on us, and not have the ability to repair them - whether it be appliances, vehicles, phones, or farm equipment - and it's not because we don't know how or lack the ability, but because we don't have the manufacturer's tools or technology.

It's your stuff, you should be able to do what you want with it, and you should be able to fix it yourself if you can, and that's what Iowa's Right to Repair Act is all about.

Whether it be special screw heads or diagnostic tools, the limit from manufacturers doesn't just affect the consumer themselves, but the privately owned repair shops as well.

Auto mechanic putting oil in a car engine
Getty Images/iStockphoto

Have you ever had a problem with your car, you take it to your normal shop or shade-tree mechanic, and they say "We don't have the computer needed to fix this issue, you'll have to take it to the dealer,"? What would normally have been a $100-$200 fix immediately became a $500-$600 repair because you're paying the only guys who can do it.

Check out some of these stories from our listeners who have had to sacrifice more money because they had to call upon the manufacturer's repairmen instead of doing it themselves or calling their buddy who knows what he's doing.

Two professional look technician inspecting car underbody and suspension system by using check list in modern car service shop. Automotive business or car repair concept.

"My brother is a diesel mechanic but also runs the family farm.  He can fix his own tractors. The same part on his old tractor was a $200 part.  On the new tractor was a $7000 repair because the computer would lock him out since he wasn't a dealer," Tom wrote us.

"My Ram has a Cummins under the hood. Even though Cummins has "heavy duty" truck shops in the area, Ram will not give them the software they need to access the ECM. So for a simple repair, I have to go to a Ram dealer, instead of the people that made the engine. I should add that I can get most engine parts from Cummins, but they can't hook their computer to my trucks computer," Phil said.

Without the Right to Repair Act, we lose the ability to take care of ourselves, and we push closer and closer to losing our friendly-neighborhood repairmen to nationwide, corporate-run shops that charge up to ten times the amount for repairs.

Find out who represents your area in Iowa legislature through the Iowa Legislature website, and tell them you want the Right to Repair your own stuff.

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