Anderson recommended that shops subletting their calibrations print the OEM repair procedures and explain their expectations because the consumer signed the authorization with the shop, not the business that receives the sublet. When writing an estimate, it is critical to use good line notes, and Anderson suggested copying line notes directly out of the OEM repair procedures.
Challenging attendees to list the steps required to perform a proper diagnostic scan, Anderson listed his 13 steps. First, pull in the vehicle, and then access the battery. After hooking up the battery support, allow the vehicle to reach operating temperature, and once the scan tool is hooked up, perform an output or functionality test based on build data. Record the freeze frame data, record the DTCs, and research the DTCs on the OEM website. Next, navigate the flowchart in the OEM procedures, and then fix the vehicle’s problem. A test drive may be necessary to ensure the DTC doesn’t recur, and the vehicle may need to be rescanned.
“What you charge depends on all you do to perform the scan,” Anderson observed. “Some functions should be line items while others should be included in the scan itself. I would record line items for accessing the battery, hooking up battery support, recording freeze frame data and DTCs, researching the DTCs (which is diagnostic time), navigating the flowchart, fixing the problem and test-driving the vehicle. I want to encourage you to think about the different steps in the process and which should be included in scan time compared to which ones should be considered separate line items.
“Remember, the time should reflect how long it takes the average technician to gather up their tools, equipment and supplies, and perform the task in a safe and proper manner. Then, return all their tools, equipment and supplies to the proper storage place. An average technician is someone with five to seven years of experience.”