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A story of prescans and squirrels


We’re excited to announce a new generation of pre and post scanning tools. We call it the Vehicle Health Check (or VHC) Scanning Suite. Our goals were to make scanning affordable, portable, and easy. To this end, the VHC Pro is a pocket-sized OBD2 dongle that fits in your pocket and pairs with a smartphone app.

Pre and post scanning is (mostly) mandatory these days. And for good reason.

Appraisers and estimators are trained to see physical damage (a dent, broken tail-light etc.) but they can’t determine if a wiring harness is pinched, or if a control module is not functioning… or if someone ate the fuel injection wiring.

This past summer, an Ottawa man dash’s alarms went off. It turns out that squirrels had been gnawing at the electrical wiring associated with the fuel injection system.

Although rodents nesting in vehicles is not new, one thing that has changed is the use of eco-friendly plastics in automotive wiring insulation. Plant-based plastics can include soy, rice husks, wood, peanut oil and corn. Welcome news for hungry rodents! Furthermore, when warm, these coatings give off a mild  vanilla scent, which they love. The issue is so common that Honda has developed an anti-rodent, cayenne-pepper flavoured tape. (Don’t believe it? Search for Honda Part No. 4019-2317.)

But is the scanning ask practical? Enter Vehicle Health Check

Imagine this vehicle is in a minor accident. Without scanning tools, the chewed wires might go undiagnosed for some time.

However, the scanners used today can be bulky, complex and expensive. Because of this, some shops skip over the pre-scan – a critical repair planning stage.

For example, the shop estimator may be at the front parking lot with a waiting customer, and may not have time to walk back to the shop floor to grab a bulky scanner. Appraisers in the field never use scanners – they’re too complex and expensive for their needs.

We designed Vehicle Health Check Pro to address exactly these issues. It’s portable, easy to use, and cost-effective. The goal is to make it make sense to do a pre-scan on 100% of vehicles.

VHC Pro also:

  • Generates a powerful diagnostic report pulling from millions of industry confirmed fixes via Identifix
  • Is significantly less expensive than existing tablet systems
  • Allows staff and IAs to extract and view scanning and diagnostic data while writing the estimate
  • Resets codes

The VHC Pro mobile app is currently available for iPhones, with our Android version coming very soon. In 2019, we’ll be releasing our heavy-duty Tech Kit tablet, designed for use in-shop, during the repair. Neither products can fend off pesky rodents, but they’ll help mitigate some of the associated risks!