Garage equipment sales and service specialists

Wheel Alignment

The Wheel Alignment Blog | Benefits of Offering Alignment

why should you offer alignment?

“Why do I need to offer wheel alignment?” A question those not already well versed in providing alignment services may ask, and a valid one to those not in the know. This month we’re going to put forth a few of the most common reason garages choose to add alignment to their service roster. We hope if you don’t already, it will quickly become clear why you should invest

One of the main reason you need to offer alignment services is the huge demand caused by the state of many UK roads. Many potholes are not going anywhere any time soon. Alongside speed bumps and kerbs, all can cause havoc for suspension and thus alignment.

What’s more, any work completed on a vehicle’s suspension, including wheel bearings, springs, arms and shocks to name but a few, will also impact a vehicle’s alignment and thus a check should be completed following work of this nature. This also includes dropping down of the subframe to fit clutches and gearboxes. Could you be offering alignment alongside this work to give your customers the best ride possible?

It is easy to overlook the fact that wheels are also getting bigger whilst tyre profiles are getting lower. What does this mean for your customers? More strain for the suspension! Refer to the point above. While the suspension is designed to bend, with many alloy and mild steel components offer greater bend, the alignment will always bear some of this impact.

Modern vehicles also contain many electronics and these rely on alignment being correct. These can fail and render a car undrivable, all because the alignment hasn’t been reset.

What we all need to remember is that the customer wants a straight steering wheel and for the car to perform as it should. As a vehicle operator, errors here are often the most obvious to spot, hence one of the most important things to be corrected. 

Customer with SSence alignment machine from Hofmann MegaplanIt is for this reason we recommend an alignment check every 10,000 miles or every service.

Did we mention alignment not only helps your customers and improves your service offering but also makes you more money! The average price for 1 adjustment (e.g. front toe) can be £30-£35. That means doing a fully adjustable car could make you a couple of hundred pounds.

It’s not just the alignment you’ll be making money on either. Just a few examples include:

  • You will be able to identify and fix further issues, e.g. worn or bent components
  • In many cases, you will have to un-seize components or replace the track rod ends in order to complete alignment, all chargeable work

What else might you need to inform the customer of?

  • Alignment allows you to make sure the car will respond correctly once a new part is fitted or old part removed
  • You can provide them with a before and after printout to illustrate how the car has been adjusted
  • You are able to keep a record of all alignments on the machine as evidence, demonstrating that when the car left everything was as it should be. Months or even weeks later it could be out again and that isn’t because you didn’t do it right the first time!
Ecoline 88 installed at customers site

Ecoline 88 recently installed in a customers site by the Hofmann Megaplan alignment engineers.

Time to offer alignment?

By now we’re hoping that if you don’t already offer the service, you’re seeing the great value that can be gained by offering alignment. Based on some of the above examples, machines like our Ecoline 88 can 100% pay themselves off in as little as 6 months, completing as few as 4 averagely priced alignments a week to do so! That’s 100% profit for your garage thereafter. You can work this out for yourself by using our online revenue calculator now!

Call our team today on 01480 8-9-10-11 to discuss the maths and find out more about the expansive range of wheel alignment solutions Hofmann Megaplan offers to suit all garages and requirements. 

Author | Warren Carr | Wheel Alignment Specialist

My name is Warren Carr and I’m from the team of alignment engineers at Hofmann Megaplan. I will be using this blog to regularly highlight some practical hints and tips which will help you, our garage professionals, achieve great results with your equipment, no matter the make of alignment machine.

Automechanika 2018 | Review

Hofmann Megaplan was pleased to see so many delegates from the automotive aftermarket and vehicle production sector at Automechanika 2018.

The 3-day event took place at the NEC, Birmingham and saw Hofmann Megaplan launch a number of new products including the OWB (One Weight Balance) technology for wheel balancing.

It was a record attendance at the show which also saw over 500 suppliers from over 26 countries set up stands in the 3 halls which the event took over.

New from Hofmann Megaplan

megamount 813xl

megamount 813xl on display at Automechanika 2018

Pulse 8 and megamount 813xl both in action at Automechanika 2018

The Hofmann Megaplan stand was pushed for space with a wide variety of machines in operation for delegates to inspect. This included the brand new megamount 813xl which proved popular on its show debut. As the first of its kind in the market, this tyre changer is a fully automatic machine but without a traditional tilt back arm.

The Hofmann Megaplan team were on hand to explain to delegates how the innovative parallelogram design operates the mounting head with control and precision, removing all flex while fitting.

 

Pulse 8 at Automechanika 2018

The new Pulse 8 Wheel Aligner on show at Automechanika 2018

Wheel Alignment & Balancing

Alongside the OWB technology for balancing, a brand new wheel alignment system was also available for preview at the show. The Pulse 8 sits between the Ecoline 88 (ccd) and the Ssence 600 HD (3d) and is available to order now. Simply call 01480 8-9-10-11 to find out more now.

Automechanika 2018 proved a valuable opportunity for delegates to see the full range of wheel alignment machines Hofmann Megaplan offers side by side. If you missed out then a visit to the fully operational live demonstration showroom can also be booked by calling 01480 8-9-10-11.

The OWB (one weight balance) balancing software program that will be featuring on multiple machines, including the ms420, ms820, ms1200 and ms2000 was on show at Automechanika 2018. This was its first outing with many delegates impressed at the benefits the system can offer. For more on how OWB works speak to one of our experts today or arrange to visit us for a demo.

 

Mark Berryman at Automechanika 2018

Managing Director of Hofmann Megaplan Mark Berryman (right) with the team and delegates

In Summary

Managing Director, Mark Berryman said of the event “This was an extremely well run and slick operation. I take great pride in any opportunity Hofmann Megaplan has to showcase its incredible range of machines and Automechanika never fails to draw in the right crowd from all areas of the automotive and garage sectors. We look forward to returning next year.”

 

 

 

Gallery

Other images from the Hofmann Megaplan team at Automechanika 2018:

The Wheel Alignment Blog | Turn Plates

Alignment Turn plates Banner

I’m going to start this blog series by talking about one of our most common issues those working with wheel alignment equipment can face, and that’s turn plates.

If not used correctly, turnplates can cause big problems when trying to achieve a straight steering wheel. Whats worse it can lead you to produce different results each time you attempt to align the same vehicle which quickly becomes infuriating.

Steer Clear of…

Some garages will try and use their MOT plates to save time and these can be ok to just turn the wheel and look for defects. The risk is that they get covered in dirt and that will get into the plate and cause a restriction. To complete an alignment accurately the plates need to be completely free moving.

Others might use their old style dish type turn plates. These most commonly come from an older laser system. They will turn but don’t slide, meaning they build up tension and can give you wrong results.

Another common mistake made by alignment engineers is simply not using the pins provided. This is surprisingly common and can cause irreversible damage to your to your wheel alignment system.

Remember to…

We should always drive on the turn plates with the pins in. As soon as you are ready to remove a vehicle from your alignment station, put the pins in. Failing to do this can lead to damage when the car is reversed. The plate can tilt and bearings become loose, impacting the accuracy of your machine.

Damage Turnplates when not using pins - Hofmann Alignment Blog

Loose balls due to not using the supplied pins.

Some people simply fail to maintain their turn plates. Metal bearing plates will need regular lubrication for example with grease. Nylon bearings don’t need any grease or oil but should be cleaned regularly depending on usage by removing the top plate and brushing out any dirt.

Damaged turn plates and ramp example

Loose bolts can lead to damaged turn plates and impact other equipment. This damage can be seen in the above example.

Bolts can also come loose and put vehicle weight directly onto the ramp. This means that the free movement needed to complete accurate wheel alignment is not there.

You can check your turn plates by pulling the car side to side freely. Any restrictions felt will likely cause issues.

Author | Warren Carr | Wheel Alignment Specialist

My name is Warren Carr and I’m from the team of alignment engineers at Hofmann Megaplan. I will be using this blog to regularly highlight some practical hints and tips which will help you, our garage professionals, achieve great results with your equipment, no matter the make of alignment machine.

Hofmann Megaplan Premium Wheel Balancers

Tel. 01480 891011

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