Access to data is critical for today’s service technicians.
Under the hood doesn’t mean the same thing today as it did yesterday. Customers’ vehicles are more complex than ever and so are the repairs. The aftermarket industry is tired of not being able to fix customers’ vehicles, which is why AARO has joined the National Automotive Service Taskforce (NASTF).
There are conflicting stories out there about whether or not we can access the information to repair the vehicles. Canadian Automotive Service Information Standard (CASIS), a voluntary agreement, was signed in Canada and most of the issues were resolved. However, not all of the vehicle manufacturers cooperated with the agreement, and some issues remained.
A different situation
Our counterpart in the U.S., the National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF), has a different relationship with the OEMs and works together with them to find solutions. Having spent some time in the U.S. and talking with shop owners, we found that the manufacturers in the U.S. want the aftermarket fixing their vehicles.
The logic behind it is that if customers are not able to get their vehicle fixed at their choice of repair location, why would they buy that vehicle in the first place?
Consumers today are doing their homework. They invest their time in researching prior to buying, and reviews are part of that process. If reviews from other owners are not favourable they take that into consideration.
For these reasons, AARO is working with NASTF. What does that mean for us in Canada? It means that we have new avenues to help, should shops run into problems accessing OEM repair information.
We have a Right to Repair 2020 Toll free number 1-833-787-4020 or 1-833-R2R-4020, which is dedicated to helping shops and technicians regarding access to information. There is also a Service Information Request 2020 form available through aaro.ca. These SIRs are now being tracked so that NASTF now knows which ones are coming from Canada.
As has been discussed previously, there is also the AARO Right to Repair 2020 Taskforce that will be reviewing all the SIRs before they are sent to NASTF. In some cases, it may be a matter of not accessing the information because you are not sure where to find it. The taskforce is made up of all highly trained Automotive Technicians who are working on the newer vehicles every day.
Because vehicles are becoming increasingly complex, many shops and technicians also need access to security information, such as key codes, PIN numbers, immobilizer reset information, and similar types of information. The NASTF VSP Registry program allows access to security-related information while protecting the safety and security of consumers and the integrity of automobile security systems. Further details are available by calling the NASTF VSP Support Center at 855-636-2783 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
AARO’s role is to continue supporting and providing a voice for independent service repair specialists when it comes to industry and government. We will be holding our Annual General Meeting in the fall, and AARO’s Symposium and Trade Show will be held on January 18, 2020.
We will continue to bring NASTF updates as well as the latest in OE repair training and information. The aftermarket continues to be a major part of the automotive industry, and it’s important for both OEMs and government to understand the role that we play, both now and in the future.