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Junior

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Junior last won the day on March 20

Junior had the most liked content!

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About Junior

  • Rank
    Advanced Member

Business Information

  • Business Address
    441 Malden Turnpike, Saugerties, New York, 12477
  • Type of Business
    Auto Repair
  • Your Current Position
    Shop Owner
  • Automotive Franchise
    None
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  • Certifications
    ASE Certified Master Technician

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  1. I'm just about to settle on a software package to run my shop. I've found looking at a number of them that there are a few that don't seem to tick the basic boxes in information gathering that we as registered repair shops are required by law to do. I'm wondering if this is a New York specific issue or if this issue happens everywhere. Would you guys comment on your state requirements. I'd like to pass some more information to the software company I'm working with in hopes that they motivate to make some improvements to satisfy these requirements. Example, in NYS we are required to capture a signature or document approval with the customer complaint to begin work on the vehicle before we touch it. We must record mileage when the vehicle enters the shop and when it is finished. We must state the warranty for each item and the terms and time limit for any guarantee on repair work. We have to collect a non taxable $2.50 waste tire management fee for every new tire sold. We have a state safety and emissions inspection that is varies in fee and is non taxable.
  2. Junior

    Best Scanner for General Repair

    Don't even both with a snap-on, they are decades behind in development. I had a verus for a few years, I would have been better off throwing the 10+k in the scrap bin. I get calls from other shops all the time that can't do basic tests on european cars or swap modules and need them programed. I stop by to do a favor and sure enough, they've got a snap-on, worthless. Best overall that I've used is the Autel Maxisys elite. Does most everything and comes with a J2534 passthrough adapter for when you need the OEM diag tools or need to do flash programing. I also have dealer type VCIs for the brands I use the most like BMW, Mercedes, VAG cars. I have a vag-com which is fast and capable for vw-audi. Most other manufacturers software work pretty well with J2534 passthrough like Jag/Rover, volvo. I have a laptop setup just for using these tools and swap hard drive trays to change software. Each one is setup for a manufacturer just like the dealer would have (subscriptions are required). This gives the broadest capabilities but takes a lot of time and technical investment. If you want to actually diagnose and fully repair problems though its the best way to do it. We can update software on all modules and even program keys on most vehicles.
  3. Junior

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    I hate to be the one to point out what should be obvious, but you already have it in writing from the source that is most credible. This information is in the owners/maintenance manual of most every vehicle from that vehilces manufacturer. It blows my mind how many people including techs have never opened the instructions to, what to most people is the 1st or 2nd most expensive asset they will ever own and the only one that can easily kill yourself and multiple people around you. They all come with manuals that state how to operate and maintain them. Those documents should be read and referenced. Lost it or the car didn't come with it? Most manuals for most cars made in the last 20 years are available online from the manufacturers for free. Nothing here is new or needs to be studied. This is tech 101 kinda stuff. You don't need a magazine or a third party organization to help you prove it to a customer. If they question you, there is only one answer, the right one. Are you going to torque a head bolt wrong because the customer thinks it should be done a different way? No, learn about what you're doing, do it right and if a customer doesn't like it you can refuse the job. Remember the customer comes to you because YOU are the expert and they can not do this themselves. By doing something wrong or appeasing a customer with an incorrect repair or service you are enabling them to be unsafe and supporting their incorrect information. That helps no one. BE that EXPERT, know what you're doing and do it the only way it should be done, the RIGHT WAY. This isn't meant to call out JimO specifically by the way, this statement goes for anyone that doesn't already get the point.
  4. There is a software package called Complete Auto Reports (CAR), based in NJ. Wondering if anyone is using this software or demoed it? I reached out to them a few months ago to see the software, had a very poor interaction with the representative I dealt with. I still haven't found the software that works best for me so I'm still evaluating packages. I'm thinking about reaching out again and hope my experience was just a bad apple and not representative to the company as a whole. Wondering if anyone else here has any experience with them website : https://www.completeautoreports.com/
  5. Junior

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    Traction should be the same or biased to the rear for all vehicles always. No tire or vehicle manufacturer has ever recommended otherwise. Snow tires are always on all 4 or rear only, NEVER only on the front. Putting the best tires on the front is a misunderstanding of techs that were around when all cars were rear wheel drive and didn't learn anything new when front wheel drive cars came about. They assumed that the best tires go on the drive wheels, which is great if you try to get moving, but terrible if you try and turn or stop. Most vehicle and tire manufacturers recommend no more than an 20% wear difference in tires before the set should be replaced. Tires should always be matching, staggered setups may be different, refer to manufacturer's recommendations. In my old shop, it was $20 for rotation when doing it with other services, $25 for SUV/trucks $30/$40 if no other service (someone is changing winter wheels over). We were supposed to ask the customer during the intake interview where their wheel lock socket was if not in the stock location. Then we would check door cards, center console and glove box if not found. Replace lug nuts where damaged always.
  6. Why bother with any of that. I use intuit gopayment, 1.6% no matter what the transaction or card type.
  7. Awesome, I'm referring to the lines that go to the back of the mount/dismount head. Behind the large black plastic cover. The part that spins around with the mounting fingers. I can't figure out how to route the lines so they don't get kinked when it flips back and forth. Specifically there is a blue and black air line that were zip tied in a specific way to prevent damage. Thanks!!!
  8. I thought shop controller was overall pretty decent. The application itself is quite flexible and does contain a rather broad feature set that I really like, but a few faults that are an issue. First its basic architecture. Its a Windows based client with a cloud hosted database. The setup restricts you to Windows devices and doesn't layout well on a tablet. It also had some performance issues communicating with the database during my demo. They don't offer a locally hosed database option so if you loose internet you loose your software. This is typical for browser based cloud platforms but the Shop Controller implementation doesn't allow the flexibility of a browser based application with greater restrictions. Its a design choice that only really works if you are a multiple location shop on Windows only terminals. In addition there are some features that are missing, like the ability to capture a customer authorization signature. Also SMS messaging and schedule options are POOR. SMS (txt) messaging requires you purchase a messaging plan. Messages, (SMS or email) can not be pushed from the software. This means you can't automate things like confirm customer appointments or inform a customer that their vehicle is ready for pickup. Its basically a stand alone add-on with no integration. The poor schedule is what really killed it for me, and lack of portability. Plus for the feature set its quite expensive compared to the competition. I'm posting this is the other thread I have going as well
  9. Does anyone here have a Corghi Master 26? I had to take mine apart to repair it and I should have taken a photo of the air hose routing for the dismount arm. Somehow I can't figure out how the hoses wrap around when it spins without kinking. If you have one think you could snap me a few photos?? Thanks!
  10. Junior

    Lift for low cars

    So I ended up getting the Bendpak XPR-10AS-LP with screw up pads. Overall I like it. For others that are looking at this there are a few things about it that I don't really like and should be noted. The worst is the height of the first lock. If you want to get a car only a foot or so off the ground you can't do it with the car on the locks. The first lock puts the car like three feet in the air. This means that engine pull that takes all day and has the car up and down a dozen times isn't on the locks when its low. I also I like to put a car up a foot or so when doing engine work on a low car to save the back not on this thing and low cars were my primary driver to get this lift. Or a timing belt on a transverse engine where you need to be above and below all the time. A stool and and the lift up 18" is perfect, can't do it on this machine though, it won't be on the locks. That being said when I just did that a few days ago the lift didn't budge even though it was off the locks for a few hours, but that isn't recommended usage. A few other things that should be noted, the effort you need to release the lock lever is impressive. My installer said it would wear in after a while but if you're on this lift all day your hand will hurt where you press on the lock release. You have to put body weight into it. I'm going to contact bendpak about that one, doesn't seem right, but it's all installed right. Lowering speed is SsssssLOW, I mean really slow, especially when the weight of the car isn't on it, that last few inches could take 15 seconds, which seems like a lifetime when you're watching the water boil The arms could be longer. We installed in the wide position so it probably wouldn't be an issue in the narrow setup. Getting some vehicles with full frames and therefore inboard lifting points is difficult, you have to jockey the car around to get it to reach. I haven't had one the didn't work yet but I can see this being a problem with some trucks. None of those these things are a problem with the Mohawks but the bendpak is much lower and I really like the single side safety release. Plus the bendpak was way cheaper.
  11. Thanks for the reply, that's exactly the kind of thing I was looking for. What I ended up doing came to me as I was hanging cabinets in one of my rental buildings using a self leveling laser line tool. I bought a basic one on amazon and bolted it to the tray on the top of the balancer. It works great! Only downside is having to turn in on and off, I might open it up and wire it to an external switch to make it easier.
  12. I have an older coats wheel balancer. Works great and is accurate. The problem is that on modern car 19-22" wheels it becomes really hard to eyeball the correct place on the wheel for the weight. Extra spins become common because the last weight was a few degrees off the mark. Newer balancers have laser pointers that make it easy. Has anyone retrofitted a pointer to their older balancer? Did you buy a kit or did you build something? I've done some searching but I can't find anyone that's done this before. I feel like it would be really handy.
  13. I would remove this post with details specifically about the customer and complaint from this forum. No need to post that information on the Internet, you are opening up the possibility for it to cause you trouble. Keep it confidential. Also, hire the attorney, I wouldn't send this letter, hire an attorney and have them send the letter. Not to be impolite but your letter is only going to make the issue worse. It is a lot of he said/she said banter. It will only fuel the problem. Loose the arguments and stick to the points and the facts. Let go of your emotions. File a suite alleging slander and loss of business if you want the social media comments removed. You could also petition the forum owner. Check their terms of service on false claims. You may get it removed that way. The facts of the current issue are (or it seems are) the vehicle is still on your premises, amounts may be due. Those are the ONLY things your letter should state along with instructions on how to deal with THOSE issues with deadlines. Loose the rest, it will only cause you grief.
  14. Junior

    Lift for low cars

    That bendpak seems pretty nice, looks like it will do what I need. The only one I found that is lower is the tudedo/ideal TP10KAC-DX with 1/2 inch more clearance at the pad. Both are ALI certified. The bendpak is the better brand name for a few hundred more, probably worth it. Thoughts on screw up pads? They are an option on both lifts, I've never had a lift with them, just drop in adapters.
  15. Junior

    Damage to customers vehicle

    Filters can fall off but I agree, there would be tons of telltale signs, oil everywhere and should have had an oil light long before it fell to the pavement. It does happen, happened with my old shop a few times, or at lease loose filters, every time it was by the hand of the owner. In any other scenario he would be looking for work but it wasn't my call to make at the time. Even if it is an honest mistake it never makes the customer feel good. How you handle it could though. If it was possible that it was your (shop) fault then own it and help the customer come to a resolution. So I agree, do what you think is right. One time had a defective purolator and they covered the engine, so its not out of the question that it would have been a defective part. On the note of those axle boots, inner boot failure is SUPER common on a lowered vehicle. Axles should never be warrantied on non stock ride height vehicles. I personally own a fleet of very low cars. Those that haven't had the engines raised to correct the axle angle blow through boots/axles on a regular basis. Especially FWD vehicles with long/short axle configuration, put it up on an alignment rack and look at the angle of the short axle under load, no way that boot is gonna last!!!


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