ADAS and alignments
When aligning vehicles with ADAS systems, are the resets required every time? We have been seeing a lot more of these vehicles lately. what are the options for independent shops?
They are required when SI says they are. Depends on the system and OEM.
Resets (calibrations) of forward facing sensors is recommended by most OEs any time thrust angle changes. Bob is correct in pointing to current SI.
Is any of this information available from alldata or identifix? we unfortunately dont have access to OEM service information.
Everyone has access to O.E. info. All it takes is some moo-lah. ;-) Most have short-term subscriptions available, which is what a majority of shops use.
You could also try calling your aftermarket service information provider and ask THEM to get the O.E. info for you (presuming you and they were unable to find it in their system).
"Everyone has access to O.E. info. All it takes is some moo-lah. ;-)" Thats true, but the shop isnt going to buy them. My managers are having a hard time understanding why we cant align some cars. Ive been recommending we dont align any cars with ADAS, they obviously dont like that.. Ill try to call alldata on the next one I have.
With that thought process, you won't be doing any alignments in a few years. AllData will email any info you can't find or help you find it in their system
MotoLogic has OE information in their system and Identifix has a portal to OE documents. 2017 and 18 or so will require an OE website for current SI.
Motologic will email missing content in the same way as ALLDATA. Just use the customer service link.
you are right, Ive told my employer the same thing. but I can assure you they are not going to buy the tools to do it.
Larry, Re.: "Ive been recommending we dont align any cars with ADAS"
Your recommendations are echoed throughout the industry (if your managers won't believe you, maybe they will all the other techs out here?). And, bad situations resulting from improperly performed alignments on cars with ADAS have been published in several trade publications (do they read any?).
Do your managers understand the liability they are opening themselves up to by not performing tasks the same ways as the manufacturers have published? Maybe that was a rhetorical question.
Stand your ground, you are right on this one. Don't be dragged into a legal situation because some manager wants to risk something.
My apologies, I assumed by this comment, "And, bad situations resulting from improperly performed alignments on cars with ADAS have been published in several trade publications (do they read any?)." you were referring to vehicle that had not been in a collision and just had a wheel alignment performed causing the system to not work correctly.
I used your search criteria and could not come up with anything that associated a wheel alignment with the system not working correctly other than Aftermarketers selling products. I think that we are in the urban legend portion of ADAS. Lots of people says that they have "heard" of things happening but don't actually have hands on or know a person that has had hands on.
All of the ADAS calibrations that I have done have been associated with a collision. I'd love to find information pointing to tires being replaced and an alignment being sold requires an ADAS system to be calibrated. To date, I have yet to find it in OE SI. I will continue my search.
No, I see now that it is I who should apologize. I meant to write "And POTENTIALLY bad situations...". I see now that it was pointed out why there was confusion. I'm sorry.
What is the process for calibrating the front camera? If it's service info, I will look when I get home
There are 2 different procedures depending on what service or repair has been done. The details are in SI including MotoLogic.
I invite you to consider that not all members in this forum have access to O.E. info.
Michael, not all members of this forum are in a region that has O.E. access.
Havent contacted them yet.
we wont be doing any resets that require targets, we just dont have the space to set it up. as far as the vehicles that require test drives to reset, is anyone here doing them? how much are you charging?
You're correct sir. I digress. There are some folks here who do not live in the US, therefore do not have allowance to purchase O.E. service information that U.S. residents can.
Thank you for pointing that out.
Jaime we in Canada and yourself in the US sometimes take for granted the access we have to OE websites. Many countries are denied such access. I used to just take for granted it's online so anyone can access it. Not true of pay for use sites like the OE manufacturers. Alldata, Pro Demand and Identifix either have the information or will email it to subscribers, if they ask for it. Some don't know it's available. Some people don't know they can access OE information with a short term subscription for very reasonable costs. I guess it comes down to researching what information is available and what the cost is. Being a member of a network like this and others is a good place to ask where can I find what I don't know I have access to. For the members who don't have access to the information it's a place to ask for help from someone who does.
I have not done any ADAS calibrations but if it's not specified to perform them in service info then I bet the calibration process is assuming an aligned vehicle. So if it isn't specified to recalibrate anything then I would think correcting thrust angle would only make the ADAS system more accurate, if anything.
Let’s take a Toyota Camry forward facing cameras as an example. SI says to mark target placement using the front and rear emblems and a plumb bob to mark the centerline of the body. Then measure and bisect that centerline to place the target (3 places, center and 555mm to each side). That process assumes that thrust angle is correct. If it is not that calibration is inaccurate by the amount of thrust angle error. To put that in perspective 1 degree of deflection is about 63 inches at 100 yards, 126 inches at 200 yards, etc. Some OEs specifically say that thrust angle effects calibration and some do not. However, if the calibration process is using the centerline of the body as a reference for target placement then thrust angle MUST be within specs for the sensor or camera calibration to be accurate.
Yes. So am I right in my thinking. That if the calibration assumes the alignment is good. Then correcting thrust angle would make the ADAS system on that car more accurate? Performing an alignment on that Camry, in your example, wouldn't throw the camera calibration off? It would correct it, so to speak?
Well...that's close. The only way to ensure an accurate calibration on those vehices that use centerline as reference is to make sure thrust angle is correct first. BTW...we are evaluating an aftermarket targeting system that aligns the targets based on thrust angle reference.
I thought it important to mention... A body shop owner / customer of mine was recently dragged into court to explain he had done everything precisely by-the-book when repairing a vehicle. He had sent the vehicle to the dealership to have the alignment adjusted, and subsequently the ADAS system recalibrated while there. His documentation indicated everything had been performed as it was supposed to have been. That same car got wrecked two weeks after he completed repairing it.
The next wreck involved a "Lane Departure" warning that supposedly didn't happen, and the driver was claiming if it had, he would have not hit the vehicle that was in the lane beside his car.
There was no fault proven (of the body shop), and yet the lawyers refused to compensate our body shop owner for his time spent defending himself. His statement in court included some of the text found in the owner's manual published for the vehicle, which basically said something about the driver having ultimate responsibility, and those systems were made to ASSIST the drivers in maintaining control of their vehicles. Didn't matter.
So, I have chosen to do no more than analyze faults with those systems. I refuse to re-calibrate any of them. I have so much other work, I don't need that too. And, I certainly don't have the time to defend myself in court, proving I do everything by the book, and not be reimbursed for doing so.
Sadly this is going to be a target rich environment for litigators no matter how accurate we are in the services we perform. Every OE stresses that this is an assist technology and the driver still needs to be vigilant and actually DRIVE the vehicle...who knew ;) .
While I understand your worry about being hassled by lawyers I think the more we as a group stand up for ourselves the quicker the problem will go away. Those lawyers will learn that the top notch techs/shops know what they are doing and you won't gain anything by going after them.
As far as not getting compensated, well that happens if you are subpoenaed and have to go. I haven't been in that situation yet but it I were I would consider small claims court against the lawyer and his client. I don't think the lawyer alone can be sued since he was acting on behalf of his client but I'll bet together they can.
Now on to the actual discussion of this post. I have a customer who purchased a brand new vehicle. He was having issues with the lane departure going off for no apparent reason. He had taken it back to the dealership for warranty/repairs several times, each time they stated it was working fine. According to the vehicle owner the dealer had been unable to solve the issue.
At the time, 2016, I didn't have a factory level scan tool for the car line or any real understanding of how the ADAS worked. I was still repairing this customer's other vehicles and each time he dropped one off for service he would grumble about the problem. He liked the vehicle and didn't want to lemon law it, I don't know if he could but I would guess so, so one time I volunteered to take the vehicle for a test drive with him.
The first thing I noticed was the rougher the road the worse the problem was. I also noticed the system was biased (more sensitive) towards the left (center line) side of the car. It always was the left side warning that went off. Asking a few questions of the customer found he felt the same thing. I could feel one more thing that he could not. The vehicle was suffering from a very slight case of bump steer. I found a couple a hard bumps and took them faster than normal, both times I could feel the vehicle twitch sideways just a little.
I wrote a note, told my customer to hand it to the service writer and sent him on his way.
He called me up two days later much happier, his car was fixed. Next time I talked to the parts department he mentioned one of the service writers had asked about me/my shop.
Bringing the thrust line into spec cured the over active ADAS. As I asked them in my note, they did not aim the ADAS after performing the alignment. I don't know how the ADAS aiming is done on this car, if felt like the ADAS was aimed off the body of the car without care or concern as to how the vehicle will drive down the road. If that is the case then I would expect step one in the aiming process of the ADAS to be to perform a four wheel alignment.
Very interesting story on the vehicle being out of alignment. What year, amke and model?
As to your comment on the legal side. It's a pure liability element. We are the professionals and are to know to use the correct procedures and tools. The only people that get to determine what those are had always been the OE.
You should research the John Eagle case. They won the case because the professionals thought they knew better than the OE and did not follow the procedure.
2016 Subaru Outback Limited. Still under warranty, less than 5,000 miles on it. The problem happened since day one of ownership.
I am very aware of the John Eagle case. I owned and operated a body shop for over 20 years. Once the insurance industry started attempting to tell me how to repair the vehicles I decided I had had enough and quit the body shop. I didn't need an untrained back yard bob telling me the way I'm supposed to repair vehicles. I put up with the aftermarket parts issue for years, but when the insurance company's representatives start telling me how to make the repairs, what they will and won't pay for, etc I just decided it was time.
We were properly trained, my shop properly equipped and everyone knew what was the correct way to make repairs. The first things were easy to dismiss, not going to pay for aiming the headlights for example, forcing aftermarket parts without the option to upgrade to OEM parts. From there the restrictions just kept getting worse. I knew the know-it-alls insurance companies would start demanding changes to the repair procedures in order to save the insurance companies money. I also knew that the body shops that stood up for the correct industry approved methods would be bypassed in favor of those that would cut corners as "recommended" by the insurance companies. I wanted to be long gone by the time any of that happened.
In my opinion, the lawsuit should have included the insurance company that paid for the auto body repairs. The damages should have been high enough to put State Farm out of business, then maybe the rest of the insurance companies would sit up and take notice.
Unfortunately body shop owners do not appear to have the backbone to stand up to the insurance industry any more than a lot of mechanical repair shops will stand up to a customer who brings their own parts.
I do know on the Dodge vehicles you are supposed to reset the ACC (Adaptive Cruise Control) and the SAS (Steering Angle Sensor). I am not sure if this is much help in your current situation, but if you do not reset on the Dodge products then a SAS code will automatically set.