Professional Distributor - 42

Find out what
shop owners are
reading about in this
month's pages of

DIAGNOSTIC TECH

Delivering professional
automotive repair and service
Navigating today's voluminous data sets.

A

utomobiles are one of the most sophisticated devices most humans will ever interact
with." That comment came from Dr. John
BY SCOTT BROWN
Scott Brown is an ASE Master Certi- Heywood, a mechanical engineering professor
fied L1 Technician and has over 37
at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
years of professional service industry experience. He is an independent Heywood has been an instrumental figure in
shop owner in Southern California the development of the modern engine design
and is engaged at various levels
technology that we see in vehicles today. If you
within our complex industry. He has
a deep understanding of the chal- think about the statement above and let it sink
lenges technicians experience at the in, you'll realize how critical your job is at solving
service level and is continuously
problems when these sophisticated products
striving to move the industry forward
through education and networking. experience failures.
Brown founded Diagnostic Network
(diag.net) after 22 years of service
at iATN, where he retired as
company president in 2018.

DROWNING IN DATA
If you're going to utilize the volumes of information
needed to accurately address a vehicle's problem,
access to digital service information is paramount.
Knowing how to search through a database like this
is the first part of the challenge. Being able to also
accurately reference and scrutinize that information,
and apply the effective repair methods to vehicles,
is equally challenging. Additionally, scan tools and
other diagnostic devices are needed to communicate
with these complex machines.
While we have many choices of equipment
options, several tool companies are continuously
developing products that are never 100 percent
complete when they hit the market. For many of
these companies, when they embark on developing
a tool, they need to make significant investments
in a number of areas to provide a viable tool for the
marketplace. For the most part, software development for these tools is continuously advancing, and
when these companies decide to enter the market
with their product or service, they usually have to
figure out how they're going to fund the continuous development of these products. In most cases, a
software subscription model is usually chosen. We'll
go more in depth on this topic later in this article.

SERVICE INFORMATION
While there are numerous aftermarket service
42 Professional Distributor I October 2020 I VehicleServicePros.com

information platforms out there, one needs to really
analyze and challenge the information offered when
using it to apply a repair to a vehicle. In my shop,
we have access to multiple information resources,
including aftermarket and OEM information services. It would be nice if there was a single location
that had all of the most up-to-date and comprehensive information available, but that simply does not
exist due to the complexities involved in our field.
In most cases, aftermarket service information
platforms source their information directly from
the vehicle manufacturers. This information is
usually licensed from the OEM. For the most part,
the information is gathered, parsed, and then republished. However, you may realize that there are
many potential failure points along the way. Even
the OEM at times can have a mistake or the wrong
information published with service literature. Fortunately, we're all living in a digital world today which
means updates can occur at any time. Now, this
could be a good thing but could also mean that there
might be some latency in accuracy with that service
information depending on your source.
For example, I recently discovered where Toyota
made an update to the requirements calling for a
lane camera calibration. Prior to July 2020, the service literature stated that if a toe-in adjustment had
occurred on the vehicle, then a lane camera calibration process would be required. If you're accessing the factory service information that's included
with the Toyota Techstream subscription, you'll have
access to the latest information available. However,
if you access this information in an aftermarket
resource, you may be reading the old information.

CASE STUDY
On July 27, 2020, a 2014 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
arrived in my shop for new tires and a wheel alignment. I advised one of my service writers to research
the post wheel alignment requirements sincethis
vehicle was equipped with all of the advanced driver
assistance features available for that vehicle. He


http://www.diag.net http://www.VehicleServicePros.com

Professional Distributor

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Professional Distributor

Editor's Note: A Lesson in "Go With the Flow"
Cover Story: The Business of Tool Storage
2020 PTEN People's Choice Award Winners
Show Me Your Truck: A Natural Fit
Most Wanted
Sneak Peek
Go Sell Something: Impulse Add-ons Sell Even More
In Focus Products
Diagnostic Tech: Navigating Today's Voluminous Data Sets
Driving Sales: Lighting
Tales From the Road: Breakfast in the Bay
Professional Distributor - 1
Professional Distributor - 2
Professional Distributor - 3
Professional Distributor - Editor's Note: A Lesson in "Go With the Flow"
Professional Distributor - 5
Professional Distributor - Cover Story: The Business of Tool Storage
Professional Distributor - 7
Professional Distributor - 8
Professional Distributor - 9
Professional Distributor - 10
Professional Distributor - 11
Professional Distributor - 12
Professional Distributor - 13
Professional Distributor - 2020 PTEN People's Choice Award Winners
Professional Distributor - 15
Professional Distributor - 16
Professional Distributor - 17
Professional Distributor - 18
Professional Distributor - 19
Professional Distributor - 20
Professional Distributor - 21
Professional Distributor - 22
Professional Distributor - 23
Professional Distributor - Show Me Your Truck: A Natural Fit
Professional Distributor - 25
Professional Distributor - Most Wanted
Professional Distributor - 27
Professional Distributor - Sneak Peek
Professional Distributor - 29
Professional Distributor - 30
Professional Distributor - 31
Professional Distributor - 32
Professional Distributor - 33
Professional Distributor - 34
Professional Distributor - 35
Professional Distributor - Go Sell Something: Impulse Add-ons Sell Even More
Professional Distributor - 37
Professional Distributor - In Focus Products
Professional Distributor - 39
Professional Distributor - 40
Professional Distributor - 41
Professional Distributor - Diagnostic Tech: Navigating Today's Voluminous Data Sets
Professional Distributor - 43
Professional Distributor - 44
Professional Distributor - 45
Professional Distributor - Driving Sales: Lighting
Professional Distributor - 47
Professional Distributor - 48
Professional Distributor - 49
Professional Distributor - Tales From the Road: Breakfast in the Bay
Professional Distributor - 51
Professional Distributor - 52
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