Are Pre and Post Scans Important?
Today there were two experiences that prompted this discussion. One body shop explained that they did a rear bumper repair to a 2012 Dodge Ram. While at the body shop the battery drained down so far that it had to be charged to start the truck. The customer took the truck then called and said that it was running poorly. I was asked to go to the customer location to see what was going on. When I got there the battery was stone dead. I hooked up a charger for a half hour. Still not enough energy to crank the engine. The customer claimed no such issues until the body repair. I noticed aftermarket wiring going directly to the battery. (possible source of drain) The real tell-tale was the new alternator. Obviously something was awry before the body repair. Maybe the customer forgot or maybe he did not see the connection. Hopefully we can get the truck to a shop and diagnose. The battery is definitely failed, I suspect however it has a failed PCM as well.
The second was a call to "program" the airbag system on a Nissan Sentra. Since I rarely get called out to program Nissan airbags I was puzzled. When I got there, I first scanned to see what the codes were. B1431-13 and B1431-13. Both referred to a pre-tensioner open. Could be a loose connection or a broken wire. When I looked over at the passenger seat belt, It looked real stiff. I reached over and grabbed it. You could have played a tune it was so tight. The collision was on the left side. There was no passenger in the vehicle at the time of the collision. I suppose the techs did not think to check out the seat belt.
In both these cases, a pre-scan could have prevented delays and ill feelings. When I scanned the Dodge Ram, there were a plethora of low voltage codes. Maybe from the battery dying previous to my arrival or maybe was there when towed to the body shop. There were also a number of body codes that had to do with rear-view mirrors.
A pre-scan would have alerted the body technicians working on the Nissan that in addition to the driver side parts, the passenger pre-tensioner had deployed. Of all the body shops I work with, only one does pre and post scans. I talk to others about it but I think that they see it as a way for my company to make more money. I think it is a good CYA policy.
I feel your pain Mike. Sometimes they scan and still think because it has codes, the Airbag module has to be "reset" or "programmed"
On the subject of pre & post scans, if the insurance company requires them and is paying, they are performed by the bodyshops I service as all have some kind of scan tool expressly for that purpose. It's the vehicles that aren't required to have them, that probably should when they come in the door so there is a record upon arrival of what codes are stored in which modules.
We Pre-Scan and Post-scan as well as on certain vehicle will do the in process scan. The problem is a few insurance companies do not think these scans are necessary, yet. It is not that uncommon to have an adjuster say 'tell the customer if they want a pre scan to pay for it' and if there are codes related to the loss they will pay. This is contrary to the manufactures guidelines and an…
I do this on a daily routine post scan every car. even on a service like oil change
Absolutely. I prescan everything that comes in my bay. For a body shop, I see it as equally important. I’m trying to get slcc collision and technician classes onboard with the habit of scanning everything that comes in as well.
Yeah Mike, don't you love it when the OEMs slip these procedural changes in there without any notice? :) Guido
We also perform a prescan on everything that comes into our bays. It has saved a lot of trouble several times. Post scan after repairs & final road test.
Maybe a bit of overkill, but I’ve learned to pre scan, post scan after repair, test drive....and post scan again, just to be extra sure! The way I see it, an additional 5 minutes to complete a post scan can save you hours of headaches with a disgruntled customer!
Hi, I would like to know what is the make and model of the scan tool in this photo because I have never seen it. tx
Nissan Consult 3 plus, it’s the factory scan tool.
As a collision shop we pre/post scan everything and have been doing so for years. This is part of doing a complete estimate and repair. We don't let an insurance company dictate how we repair our customer's vehicle, we follow OE repair recommendations for scans not insurance companies. We can usually avoid last minute problems by pre scanning and post scans document that when we are done…
Bravo Mike! As a vendor to the collision industry specializing in SRS and ADAS, I see shops skipping or short cutting procedures to reduce cost or cycle time. We just had a shop in our area release a car with a non working airbag system because the clock spring was wrong and the customer needed their car for the weekend, huge liability issue! I’ve had shops tell me that they don‘t need to…
Mike is dead on. I-CAR SOP is to perform Pre/Post as part of the blue printing process. Sad part is that just over 50% of collision repair shops perform Pre/Post, and appr 1% perform calibrations in house. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard from a shop that they have returned a customer vehicle without performing the required, mandatory, and/or recommended calibrations because they…
We perform a pre and post scan on every body job that comes through our shop and we get paid to do it from the insurance as well. If there are codes present after the repair and they are not accident related, we will up-sell those to the customer and our mechanical department will perform and diagnosis and/or repair. The pre/post scan is required by the OEMs and it is also making sure our…
Pre and Post scans are important, full stop. I don't do body work at all, and every vehicle that comes into my bay gets a code scan. Even oil changes. Maybe it's overkill? Maybe it protects me/my shop against a whole range of complaints after the work is completed.
I have been doing pre scans for years. There is just too much information in those modules to ignore. It is also a great CYA to save the files.
When I was at VW, the Collision Manager and I helped prepare a white paper for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers which had the following statement inside: "all vehicles produced since 199X should be scanned pre –repair and post repair..." Says it all, IMHO. Cheers, Bob
Hi Bob: One would think that but, apparently, those word thingies mean different things to different people. Using the Nissan that Mike posted about, Nissan felt the need to take any possible ambiguity out of it. As I alluded, this isn't new (almost 4 years ago). The revised statement from last year tries to make it clear that this isn't an option (note the change of verbiage). I guess we'll…