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Hofmann Megaplan Blog

Welcome to the Hofmann Megaplan blog. Check back regularly for news, product launches and events.

The Wheel Alignment Blog | 3 New Years Alignment Resolutions to make this year

Alignment is an ever evolving practice with technology meaning constant innovation. Making sure all the wheels point in the right direction is only the start now!

With so much changing in the world of wheel alignment systems and technology constantly making for new capabilities of our alignment machines, there are more services then ever before to offer and thus more revenue potential for your garage.

Here are our top 3 areas to watch out for in 2019 when it comes to your alignment system: 

Keep it Calibrated in 2019!

So often we get phone calls from customers complaining of issues with there aligner. Turns out the machine hasn't been calibrated in 2 years. Worst case I've seen machines go 3 years + without a calibration.

Hofmann Megaplan recommend calibrating Laser alignment systems every year while Computer machines should be calibrated every 6 months. This is simply because there are more measurements and to keep that extremely high level of accuracy the machine needs this regular check up.

Whilst we're there, using the latest software and database is essential. Failure to do so can mean not having the latest vehicle information and may lead to lost sales.

And voila you now have the latest machine out there.

ADAS Calibration Equipment - it's a no brainer!

 

ADAS (or Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) are a common occurrence on modern vehicles, designed to remove the scope for human error when driving. Of course if these have not been calibrated correctly the vehicle may not know which way is forward to begin with.

These cameras need to be calibrated. In fact any time you have work done on an area that houses a ADAS sensor, it should be recalibrated! Given that as a garage you are likely to work on one of these areas of the car, upgrading your aligner to include ADAS Calibration Systems could be a no brainer

Find out more about ADAS Calibration systems here

Selling Alignment in 2019 just got easier

Technology can even help you sell alignment service to your customers this year. Devices like TreadReader give you a hand held tread depth scanner that can be quickly rolled over all 4 tyres of a vehicle. From there a simple report is produced giving the customer information of the condition of tyres, alignment and key performance indicators like increase in stopping distance. These reports are hard to ignore and could save a drivers life where they otherwise may have carried on with unsafe tyres.

You can even use the TreadReader to build your business pipeline. A visitor to your garage might not need new tyres now but the information the TreadReader provides you with means you'll know when they will.

Find out more about the TreadReader here

Author | Warren Carr | Wheel Alignment Specialist

My name is Warren Carr and I'm from the team of alignment engineers at Hofmann Megaplan. I will be using this blog to regularly highlight some practical hints and tips which will help you, our garage professionals, achieve great results with your equipment, no matter the make of alignment machine.

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The Wheel Alignment Blog | Turn Plates

I'm going to start this blog series by talking about one of our most common issues those working with wheel alignment equipment can face, and that's turn plates.

If not used correctly, turnplates can cause big problems when trying to achieve a straight steering wheel. Whats worse it can lead you to produce different results each time you attempt to align the same vehicle which quickly becomes infuriating. 

Steer Clear of…

Some garages will try and use their MOT plates to save time and these can be ok to just turn the wheel and look for defects. The risk is that they get covered in dirt and that will get into the plate and cause a restriction. To complete an alignment accurately the plates need to be completely free moving.

Others might use their old style dish type turn plates. These most commonly come from an older laser system. They will turn but don't slide, meaning they build up tension and can give you wrong results.

Another common mistake made by alignment engineers is simply not using the pins provided. This is surprisingly common and can cause irreversible damage to your to your wheel alignment system.

Remember to…

​We should always drive on the turn plates with the pins in. As soon as you are ready to remove a vehicle from your alignment station, put the pins in. Failing to do this can lead to damage when the car is reversed. The plate can tilt and bearings become loose, impacting the accuracy of your machine.

Some people simply fail to maintain their turn plates. Metal bearing plates will need regular lubrication for example with grease. Nylon bearings don't need any grease or oil but should be cleaned regularly depending on usage by removing the top plate and brushing out any dirt.

Bolts can also come loose and put vehicle weight directly onto the ramp. This means that the free movement needed to complete accurate wheel alignment is not there.
You can check your turn plates by pulling the car side to side freely. Any restrictions felt will likely cause issues.

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