"The most important feature, albeit one that is hardly ever listed, is support," [Victor Rivilla] said. "With the increased complexity of vehicle diagnoses today, coupled with the increased capabilities found in today's scan tools, it is more important than ever that proper support is included in the initial purchase price."
TIPS PROSfrom the PTEN Choosing the right scan tool By Brendan Dooley When you’re looking to upgrade your diagnostic equip- ment or expand the tools you have available in the shop, your first, key, consideration needs to be what you will be working on. Once you’re sure why you’re looking at scan tools and what you expect them to do for you, than you can better single out important features for your workload. What to look for $400,” Schaar said. “With a primary focus on the variety of vehicles they “In the mid range are the full-function tools that feature a service, vehicle coverage and access to repair information broad range of vehicle coverage, software that is updateable are two of the key features to evaluate,” said Dave Schaar, via the web, embedded repair information and a wide range director of marketing for SPX Service Solutions. “Across the of diagnostic functions including data recording, graphing, wide range of tools on the market, there is an equally wide bi-directional controls — generally in the $1,000 to $3,000 range of features and price points.” range,” he said. Because of the wide range of products and features avail- “On the high end are the new generation of diagnostic able, Schaar recommends any purchase be very carefully tools that run on either a hand- held tool with large color considered for a shop’s intended use. touch screens or on a PC, and provide much broader vehicle After considering the types of vehicles and repairs coming coverage and direct access to the online repair information into the bays, the buyer should consider customer support sources, more frequent software updates, J-2534 reprogram- first and foremost in evaluating scan tools, said Victor Rivilla, ming capability and online training programs.” He said these marketing manager for Launch Tech USA. fall into the over-$5,000 range. “The most important feature, albeit one that is hardly ever listed, is support,” Rivilla said. “With the increased complex- Trends to watch ity of vehicle diagnoses today, coupled with the increased It’s the current features in the high-end diagnostics that capabilities found in today's scan tools, it is more important Schaar said buyers need to consider to stay ahead of the than ever that proper support is included in the initial pur- curve. chase price.”
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