March 2, 2023
What auto repair shops must have in 2023
Auto technicians today work in a dramatically different shop environment than technicians of the past. This is the case because new technology and other innovations have shaken up the automotive industry. As a result, it takes more than an impressive tool collection, years of auto repair training, and rote memory to service vehicles. These days, there are even different, VIN-specific auto repair requirements to bear in mind.
To remain competitive and profitable in a transitioning auto industry, auto repair shops need to prepare in advance for these disruptive trends and prepare for an extremely different future.
Understanding the Trends in Auto Repair
The rampant influx of new technology into the automotive industry has made it impossible for you to use information from a 2012 Ford sedan to fix a 2018 Ford sedan. Instead, you need up-to-date information on the exact year, make, and model you’re working on to complete many auto repairs. Often, detail right down to trim and option levels has a big impact.
We dug into these issues during a recent Identifix Shop Talk Webinar with Kyle Krempel. He is a lead automotive diagnostic support specialist and regional training instructor for Christian Brothers Automotive. Here’s what he had to say about auto repair as we head into 2023.
These innovations in the auto industry have caused the need for VIN-specific information for each auto repair, preferably from one source. Krempel explains, “You cannot fix newer cars without VIN-specific information. Old, outdated technology won’t work.”
That’s because standard training tools aren’t sufficient to work on cars with:
- Adaptive cruise control
- Lane departure warning systems
- Blind spot detection
- Keyless entry and start
- Park Assist
It can be frustrating to access multiple search engine sources on one auto repair and end up with an out-of-date solution. This method of finding experience-based car repair information can be time-robbing and costly. It also means lost income from missed repair opportunities.
Other significant developments require an auto technician to quickly adapt to new auto systems, including:
- An increasing number of new vehicle types like EVs, hybrids, and hydroelectric
- Changes in horsepower
- Changes in weight
- More sophisticated timing technology
- The use of oil to advance engine timing
In his support role, Kyle says his most significant challenge is convincing auto technicians that tried-and-true techniques from 10 years ago don’t work now. He also expressed that the impact of auto technology and innovation on auto mechanics has made it impossible for one person or team of expert auto technicians to have enough experience to solve every type of currently existing car problem.
As a result, today’s auto technicians across the world face challenges like:
- Finding up-to-date VIN-specific information from one source
- Quick access to repair data, such as wire schematics and OE data
- Access to experience-based fixes for all makes and models
- Live support for a pool of specialized experts
- Speedy auto tech training for an increasing number of new auto systems and modifications
The must-haves that can save the day for your auto shop
Fortunately, the same wave of technology that’s changing the automotive industry provides a solution for the new challenges auto technicians and auto shop owners face. One prime solution is Identifix, the online auto repair information and training platform.
Quick access to experience-based information related to your vehicle’s issues
Suppose you are working on a new Honda Prius and don’t know how this machine works. How valuable would instructions be from someone who has fixed the same problem you are working on? This benefit is the basis for experience-based resources available on Identifix Direct Hit.
Kyle Krempel says, “If I’m working on a Honda Accord in the shop, I can rely on the Identifix (Direct-Hit®) information as a one-to-one ratio from the OE. I don’t have to doubt that this information is real because it’s exactly what you would see if you were working at the Honda dealership.”
Identifix Direct-Hit® offers over three million technician-submitted, verified, and confirmed repairs accessible through any of your internet-connected devices around the clock.
One easy location to access OEM data-specific information
Auto technology is evolving too fast to rely on old research tactics that often lead you nowhere these days. To be competitive and relevant to your customers, your auto shop needs a one-stop solution to accessing OEM data from authentic documents. Identifix offers this resource in the form of service manuals that included archived feedback from other auto technicians who’ve used specific OEM data.
Krempel added, “The beauty is you have one resource for all this information. As a result, I can complete tests, diagnose the problem, and complete the repair through Identifix.” In addition, even if the information you need is not in the Direct Hit system, you can reach out to the Idenitfix team to get the information you need.
Maintenance schedules to help tech keep customers informed
The rising cost and the lack of availability of new automobiles are causing many car customers to be more diligent about the maintenance of their cars than in the past. Since more customers are requesting the service, your auto shop can easily accommodate them by downloading the OE maintenance schedule directly from the Identifix Direct Hit website.
In addition, Identifix can help your auto shop be more competitive by providing your technicians with advanced, highly readable wiring diagrams directly from the OE.
Access to live help from certified professionals and instant training
Sometimes, you can encounter diagnostic issues that confound even the most knowledgeable auto technicians. So, having the option of reaching outside your knowledge base can be a vital link to getting the right solution. Through Identifix, you can get help from an auto expert with expertise on the car line you’re working on. In addition, if you are a shop owner, you can provide your team with additional support to get the job done.
Also, automakers continually add new technologies and advanced features to their new line of cars. You and your team can stay abreast of these new systems through Identifix Autodata Training. This video-based training is available online through any of your devices at any time of the day. At present, this interactive training portal has over 350 video training modules that provide a digital record of your auto tech training achievement and professional certification upon completion.
Using the power of information to embrace change
The ongoing changes in the auto industry don’t have to be adversarial to your auto shop’s survival and growth. When you know how and where to get the information to complete the wide variety of auto repairs, the transformative course of the auto industry can be your ally. Identifix provides all the information resources you need to stay current with disruptive automotive technology and innovation presently and in the future. Explore the Identifix advantage by starting the Direct-Hit® 7-day trial.