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Keeping a step ahead to survive

With motorcars evolving at a faster pace than ever, technicians need to keep up to date with upcoming technology types and current repair techniques, leading Rob Marshall to focus on Bosch’s 2023 ADAS training offerings.

It is quite easy for some garages to exist within a bubble. With rising interest rates, burgeoning inflation, unpredictable used vehicle values and restricted new car supplies, private motorists and fleets are keeping hold of their cars for longer. The result is that aftermarket technicians especially are being kept very busy, keeping these older vehicles safe.

Even so, this situation can isolate technicians from not just the latest technology but also the most recent repair techniques. With garages having such busy days, it is a brave move to take valuable time out for training. Yet, it is crucial to your survival.

As accurate suspension geometry is essential to correct ADAS alignment, Bosch recommends that you are familiar with the appropriate operations, which it covers under the course VSC28.

Bosch’s courses cover the various ADAS systems, as well as detailing which sensors are used. Pictured is Volvo’s blind spot information system (BLIS) at work, although other manufacturers have their own versions.

Take ADAS as an example. While the technology is evolving rapidly from driver assistance to part autonomous systems, many of the hardware components have been fitted to cars for at least a decade. It seems crazy that, despite their rampant digital sophistication, virtually no ADAS system can calibrate itself without any technician input.

Therefore, manual calibration is essential to complete a safe repair. This may bring you in conflict with a customer, who may need persuading that the extra expense is essential to ensure that the vehicle’s driver assistance systems work with and not against the driver. While it is true that an uncalibrated system is unlikely to flag a dashboard warning message, it can generate fault codes, or even cause the car to brake/accelerate suddenly for no apparent reason.

Help is at hand…

Bosch is one such specialist that can help you. While it has a variety of online and in-person training events scheduled throughout 2023, Bosch is hosting a trio of ADAS offerings, dependent on technicians’ needs, all of which offer IMI qualifications and count towards your Continuous Professional Development.

Course VSB40 will be held on the 1st of September as a single-day face-to-face introduction to ADAS. It includes an overview of the various technologies, such as adaptive cruise control, traffic sign and speed sign recognition and blind spot monitoring. It explains the functions of RADAR, LiDAR, cameras and ultrasonic sensors that are necessary to enable such features to be effective. Some practical exercises are included, including calibration procedures with Bosch’s DAS 3000 ADAS equipment and Bosch’s KTS tools for diagnostic interrogations.

Delving deeper…

Due to vagaries in the IMI qualifications, the one-day VSB40 introduction is an IMI Level 3 course, whereas the two days- long VSB41 provides you with an IMI Level 2 ADAS calibration award. You have a choice of either taking time away on the 5th and 6th of October, or taking the course in a trio of two-hour online modules within a virtual classroom, plus a half-day assessment.

The first day of physical training includes both ADAS theory and practical exercises that you conduct under the guidance of a tutor. It also encourages familiarity with the procedures and test procedures, again, using Bosch’s DAS 3000. Day Two comprises the assessment, carried out unaided. This includes not just a practical assessment but also a multiple-choice paper.

You also learn where the various sensors are positioned and how to diagnose and even replace them – such as this RADAR and camera.

Naturally, calibration lies at the heart of the training, which is an essential requirement to complete a safe repair.

The online blended learning alternative is split into four modules. The first one looks at how to set up the workshop correctly and details the importance of wheel alignment. Module Two includes an ADAS Code of Practice and how to use Bosch KTS and ESi diagnostics, plus the ADAS setup and the relevant software programs. The third module is dedicated entirely to practical exercises with the DAS 3000. The final practical assessment must be conducted in person, although you can complete the multiple-choice assessment online.

Going the extra mile

Technicians that need more advanced ADAS diagnostic skills are catered for by Bosch’s VSB47. You will need to have completed VSB40 and VSB41 beforehand, because VSB47 builds upon the knowledge gained from those courses. While offering an IMI Level 3 award, the theory lies firmly in IMI Level 4 territory and discusses the route that is being taken towards autonomy. It also includes information about sensor fusion, which brings together multiple inputs from different hardware, plus RADAR functions. The two-day course comprises a single day of training, with another half day of practical assessments, after which time you will be proficient in identifying and knowing how all of the ADAS system components work. Furthermore, you will be equipped to conduct advanced diagnostic test routines on not just the whole system but also individual components and use all of the available data
to identify faults, as well as identifying, testing repairing and replacing any faulty parts found.

About Autotechnician
Autotechnician is a magazine published nine times a year, delivering essential information to independent garage owners and technicians in the UK. Delivered both digitally and in print, autotechnician provides readers with technical, training, business advice, product and news, allowing our readers to keep up to date with information they need to run and work within a modern workshop.
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