Auto Repair Shops – Scheduling Software To Improve Customer Service

Everyone is doing now doing almost anything online, as long as the necessary action does not require a physical presence. It is ideal for situations that require an exchange in information, and in the digital age, all information can simply be transferred to the digital format.

Online appointment scheduling can be a benefit to almost any business, including an automotive service and repair business. Automobile owners have become accustomed to having their autos checked periodically. We know that it necessary for proper maintenance and to extend the life of the automobile. The customary way of doing this, is usually to call the automotive service and repair shop, or the location where your vehicle is serviced and book and appointment. You may be fortunate enough to get an appropriate time in which to bring in the vehicle, but many times you may be forced to re-arrange your schedule, without knowing that your vehicle may be unavailable for a certain period.

There is now a way to avoid these inconveniences. Your automotive service and repair shop should have on online appointment and scheduling system. We are now in an age where anyone can be easily connected to the internet. Experts predict that in the coming years, being always online will become a natural part of being alive. Just as we need to continue breathing in air in order to live, we will need to be connected to the internet. The web can now be accessed from anywhere, from boats, planes, trains, autos, and the number of mobile devices that can access the web far exceeds desktop computers. Cheaper prices for bandwidth, and lower prices for electronic products including smartphones and tablets, bring accessibility to everyone. More appliances, and even clothing, will be enabled with access to the web in the very near future.

This means that customers will need fast and easy access to do things like booking appointments for automotive service and repair. The process is simple. You go online and reserve a required time, and get immediate confirmation. You can then re-arrange your other activities with some degree of confidence.

There are multiple benefits in the process, not only for the customer, but also for the business owner, who can then build a very valuable asset of a database of customers. Business owners can fully realize that it can cost up to 8 times as much to obtain new clients than it is to obtain new ones, and with a much valued client database, it can easily be more cost effective to maintain a business with existing customers. These clients can be contacted and notified of special deals or promotions.

It can also be done, by reading Quick Response codes that will re-direct the user to the Online Scheduling application, where the data can be entered. Manual transfer of information which is often accompanied by the opportunity for mistakes is eliminated. The process is secure, as it is now a legal requirement for all sensitive data to be encrypted. The software can even be integrated with your social networking accounts, such as Twitter and Facebook. More businesses of varying sizes are quickly appreciating the benefits that are realized with online scheduling and appointment software.

Automotive Service Warning Lights That Your Vehicle Needs Automotive Repair!

Paying close attention to your vehicle’s warning lights is one of the surest ways to know whether your vehicle needs a minor automotive service, or a more extensive automotive repair. The dashboard lights are color-coordinated according to the severity of the warning (i.e., yellow is caution, red is serious). Each time you start the car, all of the lights and indicators appear as the car’s computer checks each system. When the lights go out, the computer has verified that each of the vehicle’s systems is functioning properly.

If an indicator light remains on several minutes after the car has been started, or if it comes on while driving the car, you should be concerned about it. You will want to treat all dash warning lights like traffic signals.
The two basic kinds of warning lights; Yellow and Red, are further described below:
Yellow Warning Lights –

On most cars, a yellow “Service Engine Soon” light means “proceed with caution.” Your car’s computer system has indicated a potential problem and is alerting the driver.

The computer system is capable of correcting some minor abnormalities, but if the light continues to come on after multiple car starts, it is telling you that you need to consult a technical manual and/or schedule an automotive service. If the light comes on while you are driving but doesn’t come back on again, the computer system probably corrected the problem without any further intervention.
Common problems that may cause the “Service Engine Soon” light to come on are:

* computer-related problems, such as faulty sensors
* anti-lock brake systems
* safety restraint systems, such as air bags
* emissions components

Red Warning Lights –

A Red Warning light indicates an immediate danger to your car and you should immediately pull over and turn off the car. Whatever caused the red light to come on can be a safety issue (i.e., brakes), so proceed with caution as you maneuver to stop the vehicle.

Unfortunately, when the red light comes on, the problem is already occurringthis is NOT a pre-warning. It can be a matter of seconds before permanent engine damage occurs. Call for road-side assistance for automotive repair.
Problems that normally cause red warning lights are:

* low oil pressure
* engine over-heating
* brake failure
* transmission over-heating
* low battery voltage.

Like smart phones, vehicles these days are ‘smart’ and are continuously monitoring the performance of your vehicle.

For professional automotive service, contact our ASE-certified technicians at A&C Automotive & Machine by calling 651-674-4733, or go online at http://aandcautomotive.com for more information. Since 1985, our auto center has served vehicle owners in North Branch, MN, and in the surrounding areas of Harris and Stacy, MN.

Many Problems Are Faced By The Auto Industry Due To Online Counterfeiting And The Gray Market.

Counterfeiting is such a menace that even the Federal Bureau of Investigation has termed it the crime of the 21st century. If you dont believe this, perhaps some number crunching can shed some light on the kind of hazards that this activity creates for automotive businesses worldwide. For example, the global automotive parts industry suffers losses pegged as high as $12 billion a year, $3 billion of which is in the U.S. The total global counterfeit market is pegged at a whopping $350 billion. The Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA), realizing the grave situation of counterfeits affecting its businesses, formed the Brand Protection council to take matters of fake counterfeit products in the automobile sector seriously.

What are fake automotive parts? How does one distinguish them from the originals?

Some counterfeits are simply imitations of real automotive parts and look exactly like the original so as to fool the buyer into believing that they are buying the original. Other times, fake or counterfeit automotive parts are simply packaged to look like the original. Counterfeiters often utilize the same brand image, colors and font sizes to ensure that the packaging looks similar to that of the real product. Some of the most common counterfeit automotive parts are things like fan belts, spark plugs, engine mountings, wheel covers, alloy wheels, air filters, fuel filters and oil filters. Sometimes the products carry the logo of the original. Other times counterfeiters simply use outdated parts that have been thrown out by the original company or dealer, renew them with some work and sell them again in the grey market.

There are many problems associated with fake automotive parts.

Such grey market products affect the brand and the reputation of the original manufacturer. Despite being made to look like the original, these products are not the original product. Even though they may be sold at perhaps 1/4th of the original price, the worth is much less than the real product. The safety of your vehicle could be compromised, and it could have many different kinds of problems, from part failure to higher fuel consumption to higher levels of pollution. The most pressing problem with using fakes is that, while you might feel you have gotten a great deal in terms of price, you will never get the intended effect that the original product can offer. In terms of quality and durability, you will always be at a loss if you opt for counterfeit products.

Have A Comfortable And Relaxed Driving With Automotive Seat Heaters

The highly innovative concept of Automotive Seat heaters has taken the automobile industry by surprise. It aims at giving maximum comfort to the travelers.

With the advancement of technology, car seat heating system has gained immense popularity. Heated seats give maximum comfort and convenience during chilly days and drivers these days dont mind getting these installed in their new vehicles. These heated seats radiate comfort and warmth ultimately enhancing your driving experience by creating a comfy environment to keep you safe in the cold season. These seats offer accurate warmth to the driver while driving. These seat covers are developed with in-built heating pads. Their versatility lies in their capability to heat the seat within seconds. It offers soothing feel to muscles and tissues at the lower back. The automotive car heaters have a mini-size digital temperature controller with a programming feature. Due to its small size, it can be easily installed under the seat safely. These temperature controllers shut off automatically after one hour. Its continuous heat controlling system prevents over heating. However there are two types of seat warmers: in-seat warmer model and external warmer. External warmers are installed at the top of the seat and can be removed easily anytime, while in-seat warmers are installed under the seat and can be turned on and off but it is difficult to remove. An external seat warmer is like a seat cover, which has heating elements inside and is often controlled by hand remote and is connected by a power of 12volt outlet in the car. On the other hand, in-seat warmers are controlled by battery’s power and its heat controllers are built into dash or center console. Today, some companies are also manufacturing remote car starter heaters for the comfort of the buyers. Further, these heated seats can be installed in almost any vehicle that provide an accurate level of warmth and comfort to the occupants.

Many researchers and doctors have approved the therapeutic significance of these car seat heaters as they mitigate sore back and give instant relief from muscular pain. It is beneficial for those who drive for long hours. Due to these healing reasons, many drivers are actively choosing to install seat heaters in their vehicles that give them pleasurable driving experience with long-term health benefits. If you are planning to visit a hill station, you must get these heaters installed in your car as they make the inner environment of your car comfortable and cozy.

Today there are several companies that develop these highly innovative and technically approved car seat heaters for an average car to heavy vehicles. It doesnt matter if your car has leather or vinyl seats, these heaters can easily be installed with a two position switch, low and high. It is always wise to get in touch with a professional who understands your needs well and hence offer you the best service youll ever regret. So get ready to drive warmly in cold season by installing car seat heater. It is a perfect solution to keep your vehicle warm and cozy.

Automotive Aftermarket Car Parts Shows And Associations

Are you trying to make sense of all the aftermarket car shows? This guide will help.

Aftermarket Car Part Association AAIA

The Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association is the industry’s internal organization that promotes high standards of value within the industry.

Automotive Aftermarket Car Parts Association Aces

Aces are short for (Aftermarket Catalog Enhanced Standard.) Aces is the industry standard for the management and exchange of automotive catalog and vehicle data. Using Aces, suppliers can publish automotive data with standard coded designations for vehicle attributes, parts classifications, and qualifier statements. Aces provide a machine-readable format (XML) for trading partners to use in exchanging vast amounts of information. The Aces Vehicle Configuration Database is updated monthly and available only on a subscription basis from AAIA. The Qualifier Database and parts Classification Database are updated as needed. The Aces specification and database design is updated annually to include features and functions required by the car parts aftermarket…

The archive includes the Data delivery Specification ver. 2.0; the Vehicle Configuration Database, VCdb Field Definitions; XML files; the Qualifier Database ER diagram and approved Abbreviations.

The major changes in the 2008 Aces are the addition of a new and improved Qualifier database for standardized comments, footnotes, and qualifier statements; full validation of all vehicles aftermarket car parts history from 1985 and newer; and the addition of components to support multiple Units of Measure and multilingual descriptions and qualifiers.

Aftermarket Car Parts AAPEX Show

AAPEX is held every year during the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Week in Las Vegas, Nevada, and is limited to automotive professionals. No other event or trade show offers as many qualified buyers and distributors from all segments of the car parts aftermarket. More than 125,000 professionals from every corner of the global community aftermarket attend this show, and over 2,250 exhibitors display their products here.

The different groups and associations that attend this show include manufacturers, wholesalers, warehouse distributors, jobbers, retailers, independent service providers, technicians, parts stores, manufacture’s reps, exporters, importers and packagers.

Aftermarket Car Parts SEMA Show

The SEMA show is held every year in the Las Vegas Convention Center and represents the fastest growing segment of the specialty automotive aftermarket industry. Eleven miles of aisles packed with profit-making products for several niche markets including, light truck, street rod, wheel/tire, restoration, on-board technology, street performance, off-road, restyling, racing, mobile electronics, and import/sport compact performance.

At this show you will be able to meet over 4,000 aftermarket car parts international exhibitors and share the most current industry trends with them. Over 7,500 new products are introduced at this show every year; no wonder that visitors came from 113 countries last year. If learning about the future of the aftermarket is one of your goals, you are in luck because 100 educational seminars, workshops, and product demonstration clinics are offered.