Lighting has become a huge need in the collision repair industry, says Kevin Lund, general manager and co-owner of Fairway Collision and Automotive in Vadnais Heights, Minn.
“It’s a combination of that you want to catch all damage the first time, not have any supplements and get a detailed, accurate estimate,” he says. “The car’s complexity of how they’re put together—to locate all the unique fasteners and connections is more difficult.”
Lund says there are numerous methods for lighting workstations, most of which use a flashlight design and handheld hooks or magnets to position light around the work area. Some technicians at his shop also use work lights on stands in their stalls. While the light provided by those solutions can be adequate, Lund says technicians spend considerable time moving the lights throughout the repair process.
“You’re constantly moving them and bumping them,” he says, “or if you stand in front of it, then it blocks some of the light.”
HOW IT WORKS:
Lund purchased several Scangrip I-VIEW headlamps as an alternative to those lighting setups for the technicians at his shop. The I-VIEW uses LED technology—with output options of 80 or 160 lumens—that lights up the entire field of view.
“Whatever they’re looking at, it’s directing that light specifically to that area. It’s allowed them to be very efficient,” Lund says. “They’re quick lying down looking underneath the car, it lights up the underside. They open up the hood, look down in the compartment, it lights up that whole area. You’re not repositioning lights all the time.”
Even detailers, he says, use the lights when they’re cleaning the interior of the car to see any dirt and grime.
Lund says that unlike the headlamps the shop used in the past, which technicians found uncomfortable, the I-VIEW is ergonomic, light (140g) and has a comfortable fit. To turn the light on or off, the technician just waves his or her hand in front of it—no need to take gloves off to find the switch. Lund says that the light typically lasts six hours on one charge and comes with a rechargeable battery. Some technicians have two headlamps so that one can always be charging while the other is in use.
Although Lund purchased an I-VIEW for nearly every employee in each department of the shop, he estimates it took only a couple weeks to recoup the cost of the lamps. He says it saves each technician roughly 30 minutes per day from moving lights around.
In addition, he says that it has sped up the quality inspection process by being able to more easily and quickly inspect the vehicles for any issues before pushing them to the next department. He says that the lamps are part of the reason the shop has been able to reduce supplements and comebacks.
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