PALM SPRINGS — “It is critical” to perform pre- and post-repair vehicle scans, and then apply the correct repair procedures to all vehicles, reinforced a panel at the Collision Industry Conference meeting in Palm Springs.
Moderated by Jack Rozint with Mitchell ADP Solutions the eight-person panel, made up of Darrell Amberson, LaMettry’s Collision; Matthew McDonnell, Big Sky Collision Group; Jake Rodenroth, Collision Diagnostic Services; Chuck Olsen, Airpro Diagnostics; Chris Evans, State Farm; Sandee Lindorfer, Allstate; Mark Allen, Audi; and John Eck, General Motors, attempted to tackle the complex issue that has been a hot topic in the industry at the Jan. 12 meeting.
The panel first set a few ground rules, opting not to cover the question of which vehicles to scan or compensation, and instead focusing on the subject area of “given a late-model vehicle that is heavily optioned and has complex electronics such as ADAS, what are the challenges and repair issues?”
A main concern discussed by the panel are repair shops that perform the vehicle scan, but then do not utilize OEM repair standards when correcting the damage.
“The scan is just to look and see what is in the vehicle. The scan tool does not fix anything. So if you scan the vehicle and then don’t use the service repair information, there is no point in doing the scan at all. It is interpreting the results of the scan and then using the service information,” Olsen said.
Based on industry research — from sources such as Mike Anderson with Collision Advice and from GM — less than 20 percent of shops are pulling OEM repair procedures, even for structural repair, said Eck.
“No two accidents are alike. It is critical to pull repair procedures for every vehicle. If you don’t pull the repair procedures, you don’t understand the scanning. We are talking about a safe repair, and where does collision stop and electronic and diagnostics stop? It is one system working together as a design, and following repair procedures for a safe repair is absolutely critical,” he continued.
“If you touch any of these safety systems, remember this — it is a system. It is integrated and works together in more ways than in years past. We have to understand the impact of why you are scanning,” Allen said.
Eck and Allen also recognized the importance of improving information access. “We have to find better ways to make it easier and provide the information to the shops faster and in a more intuitive way,” Eck said.
“We are trying to make communications better with our information providers and insurance colleagues so we have a better understanding of how to take care of our customer. And they are just that — all of ‘our’ customers,” Allen said.
To ensure payment, remember “documentation, documentation, documentation,” McDonnell said. “If it is not documented, it didn’t happen. And this has really helped with working with our insurance partners. It requires discipline, but it is necessary.”
To see OEM Position Statements on Vehicle Repair Scanning, click on the links below: