Professional Tool & Equipment News – March 2024

Page 1, official website of PTEN $15.00 • March 2024 Volume 35, Number 1 Keeps tools firmly in place Push-pull system to set torque Enables fast and clean cutting action DETAILS ON THE COVER PRODUCTS AND OTHER NEW TOOLS PAGE 10 BIG-TIME BOXES THE EVERYTHING TOOLBOX PAGE 42 TOOL BRIEFING BACK TO BASICS WITH BRAKE SERVICE PAGE 26 SPEED DEMON UNLEASHED LIMITED-EDITION TOOL STORAGE SOLUTION SNAP-ON 292 FERNWOOD AVE EDISON, NJ 08837 COMPLETE COVERAGE DEALER LEVEL DIAGNOSTICS DEALER financING available training available Circle 1 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on
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DIRECTOR Matt Hudson


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Article reprints

Professional Tool & Equipment News (USPS 012-426, ISSN 1081-4485 print; ISSN 2150-2072 online) is published eight times a year in March, April, May, June, July, September, October and December by Endeavor Business Media, LLC. 201 N Main St, 5th Floor, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538. Periodicals postage paid at Fort Atkinson, WI 53538 and additional mailing offices.

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Subscriptions: Individual subscriptions are available without charge in the U.S. to qualified subscribers. Publisher reserves the right to reject nonqualified subscriptions. Subscription prices: U.S. $50 per year, $93 two year; Canada/Mexico $72 per year, $131 two year; All other countries $105 per year, $195 two year. All subscriptions payable in U.S. funds, drawn on U.S. bank. Canadian GST#842773848. Back issue $10 prepaid, if available. Printed in the USA. Copyright 2022 Endeavor Business Media, LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recordings or any information storage or retrieval system, without permission from the publisher.

Endeavor Business Media, LLC does not assume and herby disclaims any liability to any person or company for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions in the material herein, regardless of whether such errors result from negligence, accident or any other cause whatsoever. The views and opinions in the articles herein are not to be taken as official expressions of the publishers, unless so stated. The publishers do not warrant, either expressly or by implication, the factual accuracy of the articles herein, nor do they so warrant any views or opinions offered by the authors of said articles.

technician shortage
answer to the
Brown walks
through the
security. 26
Ripple reviews the etiquette around
brake services.
with Milton Industries on their LTI Tools Shockit Diesel NOx and Particulate Sensor Removal Kit.
Keim, Steve's Shop in Garden City, Kansas. COLUMNS
out the latest o erings from AIRCAT, Bosch, Sunex Tools, and more.
review panel tests four di erent tools and gives their feedback.
CATEGORY SPOTLIGHT Battery & Electrical Service Tools PRODUCTS ON OUR COVER Snap-on Speed Demon EPIQ 68" Roll Cab, No. KETP682A3WH Published by Endeavor Business Media, LLC 30 Burton Hills Blvd, Ste 185 Nashville, TN 37215 800-547-7377 Printed in the U.S. Volume 35, Number 1; March 2024 EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT – TRANSPORTATION Kylie Hirko 630-253-4034 VP/GROUP PUBLISHER, ENDEAVOR VEHICLE REPAIR GROUP Chris Messer 651-206-3168 EDITORIAL
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GET 20% OFF SELECT OEMTOOLS! Scan for promotional details or follow this link: BIT.LY/PTENDEAL24 Offer Ends: March 31, 2024 2 Heavy Duty Molded Cases are Designed for Storage and Mobility Comes with Ball Joint Manual and Application Chart Heavy Duty C-Frame is Tough, Robust and Built to Last Master Ball Joint Service Set OEMTOOLS 37388 For Use on Almost Every Car, Van, SUV and Light Duty Truck Circle 3 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on


In this video, technician Benedict Grubner reviews the Streamlight Wedge XT flashlight.

IMR surveyed 500 independent repair shops to see what challenges they expect to face in 2024. What challenges is your shop facing?

Challenger Lifts

12.5K Extended Forks

Mobile Column Lift, No. CLHM-125 53097138

Can I use my jump starter to charge my dead vehicle battery? The answer to this one is complex, but the easy answer is “not really.”

Displaying the latest vehicle technology, CES once again provided a stomping ground for the automotive industry.


13" Heavy Duty Hand Riveter, No. 86966 53097151

Klein Tools

64-pc Precision

Ratchet and Driver System, No. 32787 53096076


9-gallon Upright Portable

Oil Drain, No. 87032 53095955





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AThe answer to the technician shortage

Though there are many factors contributing to the technician shortage, one way the automotive industry can begin to rebuild its staff is through diversity.

ccording to an industry report from PTEN’s sibling brand, Ratchet + Wrench, the technician shortage remains a difficult obstacle for 68 percent of shop owners. Though there are many factors contributing to the technician shortage, one way the automotive industry can begin to rebuild its staff is through diversity.

Only 12.3 percent of automotive repair and maintenance workers are female, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Though this number continues to increase every year, there is still much untapped potential, and unfortunately, women are still more deterred than encouraged to join this industry.

One of the main reasons women tend to steer clear of becoming automotive technicians is due to the industry’s image. In a panel held at AAPEX, Kim Auernheimer, co-owner/business manager at CS Automotive, spoke about how many people see technicians as “uneducated,” when actually the opposite is true.

This image also prevents parents from seeing automotive technician as a good profession for their daughters. Another of the panelists, Jill Trotta, vice president/GM of industry, sales, and certification at RepairPal, recalled how her father reacted to her wanting to become a technician. He listed many reasons — she wouldn’t be accepted, she could get hurt, it was a non-inclusive environment, etc. — in an attempt to dissuade her.

Though the industry image doesn’t deter all women, it’s evident to the women who do enter the industry that all is not fair between male and female technicians. For Nissan Master Technician, Nelly Colon, she notes issues she’s had with customers not believing she’s a capable technician, as well as other issues like not having a properly fitting uniform due to women’s sizes not being available. Though this seems inconsequential, an ill-fitting uniform can be hazardous for technicians as the extra fabric can get caught in repairs they’re doing.

March is National Women’s Month, so what better time than now to start looking at how you can diversify your

staff by bringing more women into the mix and doing what you can to shrink the shortage? It’s easy to continue working in the way you always have. In fact, it’s kind of human nature to do so; change isn’t easy, it doesn’t come naturally to most of us. So, I’m challenging all of you to think outside the box. What changes can you make to your shop so it’s more inclusive? How can you change up your hiring process to ensure a more diverse group of people is reached? What can you do to be a part of the answer to the technician shortage?


ERIC MOORE, DeMary Trucks, Columbus, OH

LOU FORT, K.A.R.S. Inc., Huntingburg, IN


KIM AUERNHEIMER, Cool Springs Automotive, Brentwood, TN

TANNER BRANDT, Autodiag Clinic, Welford, SC

PHIL FOURNIER, Phil's Auto Clinic, Hemet, CA

JD GOAD, Goad's Body Shop, Lexington, VA

EDWIN HAZZARD, Southeast Mobile Tech, Goose Creek, SC

PETE RUDLOFF, Pete’s Garage Inc., Newark, DE

MICHELLE TANSEY, Dubclinic, Santa Clara, CA


KIMBERLY COTTLE Associated Equipment

JIM O’HARA, Clore Automotive

INSTAGRAM @ptenmagazine FACEBOOK ptenmagazine YOUTUBE PTEN (Professional Tool & Equipment News) LINKEDIN professional-equipment-tool-news
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The AIRCAT Engraving Pen, No. 6335, features a Carbide stylus and a 1/8” stroke piston design for consistent and trouble-free operation. The 13,000 bpm enables fast and clean cutting action while the sleek low-weight housing design provides added comfort. The tool weighs just 33 lbs and measures 6.3” in length. Additionally, the tool’s flexible 4’ air inlet hose and exhaust deflector provide added maneuverability and comfort and its variable speed twist on/off throttle design allows the user to control both the tool’s operation and output. It offers a quiet operation at 86 dBa.

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The Sunex Tools 8” x 10” Flexible Magnetic Mat , No. SXMAGMAT, is engineered with a grid pattern of high-power rare earth magnets capable of holding tools and parts, providing easy organization within the engine bay, lift posts, or toolbox. The compact pad features a weight capacity of 40 lbs and a flexible design that is non-marring and fluid-resistant. Its PVC outer layer ensures a secure grip while protecting surfaces from scratches and shop fluids. Designed for versatility, this magnetic mat keeps tools firmly in place during movement, accommodating various automotive applications with ease.

icking off the New Products section each month, our Featured New Products page includes brand new products showcased on the cover that are available to the automotive market.

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The Beta Tools Zero-Reset Torque Wrench, No. 666, is designed to eliminate the need for manual reset to zero. Thanks to upgraded components, the torque wrench no longer has to be brought back to the minimum setting at the end of each operation cycle. The torque wrench features a bi-material ergonomic handle that is resistant to oil, fuel, and industrial fluids, a double graduation scale that offers high-visibility and easy-to-select settings, and a push-pull system for torque locking. Torque is simply set by rotating the handle to the required setting position. Additionally, it has a torque accuracy of ± 3 percent and its click mechanism can be perceived by hearing and touch.

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The limited-edition Snap-on KETP682A3WHZ Speed

Demon EPIQ 68" Roll Cab boasts an exclusive Speed Demon emblem, featuring an intricately designed skull outfitted with a piston mohawk, turbocharged horns, and teeth made of Snap-on bits and sockets. The emblem symbolizes the thrill of speed and the rebellious spirit that comes with being a part of the automotive and heavy duty worlds that combine high-level skills with high-level power. The Speed Demon enhances technician efficiency with a host of features, including a SpeeDrawer for rapid access to small parts, a PowerDrawer for secure charging, and a PowerTop with an LED light spanning the entire length of the drawers. To expand storage capacity, technicians can create a complete Speed Demon system by adding a matching work center and side lockers.

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The OEMTOOLS Heavy Duty 1/2” MAX Li-ion Impact Wrench , No. 24481, is used for tightening or loosening nuts and bolts, automotive repair, body shop maintenance, and other applications. The rubber, ergonomic grip adds comfort and reduces fatigue. The 20V MAX* Li-ion battery provides users with more torque power and longer battery life, says the company. Features include a two-speed transmission of 0-2,200 rpm and 0-2,900 ipm, a nutbusting torque of 300 ft-lbs, and a tightening torque of 260 ft-lbs. Included with the product is a 4.0 Ah Li-ion rechargeable battery with a charging station. *Voltage is measured without workload. Maximum initial battery voltage after charging. The nominal voltage is 18V.

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AVAILABLE IN 7”, 10”, 12”, AND 16” LENGTHS

The NWS Maxi MX Waterpump Pliers are drop-forged from chrome vanadium steel and then hardened and tempered for long tool life. The pliers feature a box joint design for stability and to ensure a smooth push-button adjustment as well as an anti-pinch mechanism for worker safety. The jaws are double-toothed, and the gripping teeth are induction-hardened. The Maxi MX pliers are available in 7”, 10”, 12”, and 16” lengths and have a working capacity of 1” to 3”, depending on plier length. They are made in Germany.  Circle 13 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on


The ARES 3-pc Spring Loaded Universal Joint Magnetic Spark Plug Socket Set , No. 11080, includes three 3/8” drive magnetic spark plugs in 14mm, 9/16”, and 5/8” sizes. Constructed of high-quality chrome vanadium material with a polished chrome plated finish for rust and corrosion resistance, each spark plug socket features a spring-loaded universal joint design that prevents the joint from becoming loose and falling to the side. This design allows for easier placement of sockets on spark plugs that are hard to reach, and the interior magnets retain and protect spark plugs for easier installation and removal.

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The Heavy Duty Tool Hauler Backpack from Wiha Tools has 77 storage and 30 flexible attachment options for individual needs, with separate compartments that allow users to securely store their laptop, cell phone, and documents away from their tools. The backpack features a tilt-resistant, waterproof hard wearingbase tray to keep tools dry, as well as a stable foothold which makes sure that the backpack has a firm stand even when opened. The bag can be opened without the need for being pulled out of the trunk. The backpack is 15.16” by 10.24” by 20.87” and weighs 8.3 lbs.

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The Milton Industries 39-pc 1/2” Drive SAE Standard and Deep Socket Set , No. 1300-SS, is crafted from cold-forged Cr-MO steel to endure vibrations and impacts, preventing damage and extending both socket and anvil tool life. Its 6-point lockon design offers a pinless connection for distributing high-torque with professional strength to prevent fastener damage. The set is compatible with both impact drivers and manual tools. Each socket is laser etched with visibility in mind to mark sizes, ensuring readability even in dim conditions. Chamfered openings facilitate an effortless connection between the drive tool and the fastener.

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JohnDow Industries PurAbsorb is an absorbent solution for spills, absorbing instantly upon contact for a dry, no-slip surface. One 10-lb bag of PurAbsorb has the same absorption capacity as 14 10-lb bags of clay absorbent, allowing automotive repair facilities to save space. The lightweight, industrial-grade cellulose formula provides instantaneous absorption with no leaking, minimizing the risk of spreading hazardous spills. It is available in 1.25-lb shaker jars and 10-lb bags.  Circle 15 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 11


The Cool Boss CB-26 Portable Evaporative Cooler is built to rapidly and economically cool areas up to 3,055 sq. ft. The eco-friendly evaporative cooler allows users to direct chilled air exactly where needed thanks to its oscillating swing louvers. Measuring 43” by 27” by 66”, the compact CB-26 has easy-roll locking swivel casters so it’s easy to move as needed. Other key features include automatic water source shutoff, a remote control with convenient holder, user-friendly controls, durable ABS plastic shell construction, antibacterial housing, and an extra-long 15’ power cord for maximum versatility.

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Noregon’s JPRO Professional 2024

v1 Update features on and off-highway enhancements so users can diagnose commercial vehicles and heavy duty equipment in the same application at no additional cost. The update also includes increased support for Kubota engines, additional bidirectional support for Detroit Assurance, Allison transmissions, and PACCAR, as well as tighter integration between Repair Mentor and Vehicle Readiness features.

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The Streamlight Strion 2020 Rechargeable Flashlight delivers up to 1,200 lm, featuring both head and tail push-button on/off switches, an easyto-use mode select switch for choosing light intensities, and a convenient battery status indicator. The three-position mode selector allows users to toggle through the light’s high (335m beam distance, 1,200 lm), medium (200m beam distance, 460 lm), or low (110m beam distance, 120 lm) outputs. The head and tail switch both offer full control independent of each other and provide one-handed operation of the light’s momentary, constant-on, or strobe modes. A battery status indicator displays green when charged and red when the light needs to be charged. Additionally, the light features a TIR optic that is impact-resistant and chemical-resistant.

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The Steel Blue Boots Hobart Scuff Boot is an elastic-sided pull-on boot with a durable, low-profile scuff cap. Built to protect the premium leather at the front of the boot, the streamlined design of the stitched-in scuff cap is intended to extend the life of the boot. Highly resistant to abrasion and suited to work environments where users kneel or rest on the toe area of the boot, the scuff cap offers long-lasting protection.

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The Miller Electric Trailblazer 330 Welder offers up to 330A at 31V and 100 percent duty cycle, enabling operations to get high deposition rates by running bigger-diameter, flux-cored wire and gouging thicker materials. The 330 welder is 86 lbs and 13 percent smaller than previous models, providing lower fuel costs and reduced noise. Operators can precisely dial in weld settings thanks to its digital user interface and easy-touse controls or use preset controls for speed and convenience. Additionally, the welder can charge 12V and 24V batteries, offers polarity reversing, adjusts voltage based on weld cable length, and allows operators to change parameters at the weld joint with an ArcReach feeder.

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The Matco Tools 1/2” Drive 16-3/4”

Eighty8 Tooth Fixed Ratchet with Ergo

Handle - Purple, No. CFR158P, produces a swing arc just over 4 degrees to enable swift work in compact spaces. The ergonomic comfort handle reduces fatigue during prolonged use, while the slim profile and streamlined teardrop ratchet head enhances access in tight areas. Additionally, the ratchet offers a recessed shift lever that prevents accidental shifting and a positive stop feature to prevent overtravel or lock-up while switching. Hand assembled in the U.S.A.

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The Mityvac Fluid Extractor, No. MVA6853, extracts or dispenses fluids quickly and cleanly with a simple-touse manual syringe-type tool. It has the capacity to handle 1.5L of fluid and its integrated valve system is designed for diesel and gasoline without eroding the gaskets. The compact, streamlined design allows easy access into tight spaces, under the hood, or in areas of limited access. It’s easy to clean and its connections are compatible with other Mityvac fuel system connections.

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The 29-pc NOx and Particulate Sensor Service Kit , No. 60525200, from Pichler Tools , is designed for the disassembly and assembly of NOx and particle sensors, and the renewal of the holding thread in the exhaust system. The kit ensures that the sensor can be unscrewed without being damaged. The duo sensor socket helps loosen the sensor using a socket spanner (22mm or 24mm) which is in close contact with the sensor hexagon. The 30mm actuating nut and spanner are friction-locked to the socket.

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The Polyvance Compression Roller, No. 6144, is designed to reduce the finishing time and enhance the strength of plastic welds by smoothing and compressing the joint between the plastic filler rod and the base material. It can also be used to improve the appearance of back-side welds and accelerate the process of embedding reinforcing mesh into a repair. The tool features a polished stainless-steel roller and smooth sealed cartridge bearings, an ergonomic handle, and a high-strength plated steel frame. Additionally, the Compression Roller acts like a heat sink to cool the weld.

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The Microflex Mega Texture 93-256

Disposable Gloves from Ansell  are designed to provide a confident grip and durable protection to automotive aftermarket professionals. The orange, nitrile disposable gloves protect from hazards ranging from oils and grime to chemicals and carcinogens. The distinctive raised diamond surface on the gloves ensures a secure grip and offers a durable, tearresistant formulation. Additionally, the gloves have a 0.13 mm/5.1mil palm thickness and are anti-static, latex-free, and touchscreen compatible.

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The GripEdge Tools RPT Socket Extractors feature a patented geometry that is non-tapered to enable complete contact with the fastener sidewall and is designed to grip up to 100 percent rounded bolts, studs, lug nuts, grease nipples, and more. Extracted objects can be removed from the socket opening via the included G-FORS pusher rod. Additionally, compromised fasteners can be re-inserted in a pinch if a suitable replacement is not available. All sockets are hand and impact-ready. Available in sizes ranging from 4mm to 19mm and 3/16” to 3/4”.

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The Chicago Pneumatic CP8609 eBlueTork Battery-Operated Torque Wrench features a compact, long-lasting battery, and a torque range from 220 ft-lbs to 665 ft-lbs. Its highly durable gearbox delivers speeds of up to 15 rpm and achieves a precision of +/- 4 percent. Users can select from three types of reaction arms – blade, standard cup, or extended cup – and four feature levels: stand-alone, connected, connected quality, and torque check. Paired with CPLinQ, the eBlueTork series combines both safety and traceability.  Circle 28 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on

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The ATD Tools 100-Ton Shop Press with Safety Guard, No. ATD-7463, features a double-speed pump for improved efficiency and a foot control air valve that allows handsfree air motor operation. The shop press offers a fully welded frame for maximum strength and durability and meets or exceeds ASME/PASE 2019 standards. Its cylinder can be moved left or right to apply pressure where needed and its six-position bed allows a working height adjustment of 5.5” each. Includes a set of non-slip steel V blocks and a protective work guard for added safety.

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The Foxwell TS5000 Smart TPMS Service Tool is designed to offer a complete solution for TPMS service. The professional TPMS service tool can activate/decode universal TPMS sensors, program Foxwell TPMS sensors, and diagnose the original car TPMS. Additionally, it offers OE number search ability, automatic VIN reading, three types of sensor relearn procedures, and supports CAN FD/DoIP. It operates wirelessly and updates with one touch.

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The Harbor Freight Daytona 3-Ton Super Duty Floor Jack in Metallic Purple is a low-profile floor jack featuring Rapid Pump technology with a dual-piston hydraulic system that lifts vehicles quickly in fewer pumps and a universal joint that provides precise load control for a smooth descent. The floor jack is built to meet all current standards under ASME/PASE. Additionally, its design allows for a vehicle to be lifted from 3-3/4” to 23-1/8”, and the jack lifts up to 6,000 lbs. Other features include a hydraulic pump system with integral magnetic filtration to maximize pump life.

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More length. More teeth. More access. Revolutionary bi-directional extraction system. Durability, access and maximum storage capacity. THE MASTER SET: MASTERED. Shop sets at WE KNOW WHAT YOU VALUE. EVERY SET FULLY LOADED WITH:
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The Autel MaxiTPMS TS900 is an 8”, three-in-one wireless touchscreen tablet designed for use in TPMS, diagnostics, and service. The tablet can activate, read, and relearn all known TPMS sensors (including Tesla OE sensors), as well as program the Autel 1-Sensor to replace 99 percent of the TPMS sensors on the road today, Autel says. The TS900 is compatible with the Autel BLE Sensor, preprogrammed for Tesla vehicles. Additionally, the tablet offers both basic allsystems diagnostics, such as the ability to read and clear codes and view freeze frame and live data, as well as advanced features like active tests and special functions.

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The Rogue EM 140i from ESAB weighs 28 lbs, uses 115V of primary power, and has a maximum output of 140A. The tool has a rated welding output of 90A at a 30 percent duty cycle and is optimized for use with .023” and .030” diameter solid MIG wires or .030” gasless flux cored wire. A 14-segment digital display shows parameters and details, and users set voltage and wire feed speed with traditional controls.

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The Biodegradable Nitrile Gloves from Worx Industrial Solutions are designed and manufactured to biodegrade in an anaerobic environment, such as a landfill, at an accelerated rate due to an additive added to the material. The eco-friendly gloves are durable, can be used for a wide variety of maintenance tasks, and offer chemical protection. The 4mil 9” gloves come in a perforated box for easy glove dispensing. Available in sizes from medium to XL.

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16 PTEN MARCH 2024
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Automotive security: From basic locks to advanced cybersecurity

This evolution not only reflects the advancement in automotive technology but also the changing landscape of vehicle theft and the need to protect and maintain critical vehicle systems.

Automotive security has evolved tremendously over the years. In the beginning, we had simple mechanical locks preventing physical theft. Today’s systems could be characterized as highly sophisticated digital fortresses, encompassing a vast range of technologies from basic alarms to complex electronic and cybersecurity systems with vehicle tracking and more. This evolution not only reflects the advancement in automotive technology but also the changing landscape of vehicle theft and the need to protect and maintain critical vehicle systems.


Vehicle theft is supporting more than just the purpose of parts or a free ride. It provides financial support for nefarious activities such as human trafficking, drugs, and more. Many vehicles that are shipped offshore are disassembled for parts, but even those that are not are rarely ever recovered. Many years ago, MercedesBenz launched the Theft Relevant Parts (TRP) program which serves to disincentivize thieves from stealing their vehicles for parts or reenabling vehicles that have partially disassembled.


Modern vehicles are equipped with a variety of security systems, and this is where service professionals need to have access to proper service information and tooling. These include electronic immobilizers, which prevent the engine from starting by disabling the fuel, ignition, and or starting systems without the correct key or transponder. Some are equipped with sophisticated systems that include cameras and other sensors that detect movement, glass breakage, and unauthorized entry as well as possess GPS tracking devices that can support vehicle recovery following

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p Figure 1 — Vehicles as surveillance devices Photo courtesy of Scott Brown


Sponsored By ProMAXX Tool by Milton

Techs Quickly Pull Fuel Injectors on Power Stroke & Duramax

Experienced techs use NEW Air Hammer Assisted Fuel Injector Puller Kits for Ford 6.7L Power Stroke (PMXPWP200PROP) and GM 6.6L Duramax (PMXPWP220PROP)

Diesel Technician and Shop Foreman Justin Bass has worked on vehicles for more than 10 years. Recently, while repairing a 2015 Ford F-250, he ran across a worse-case scenario.

“Because I’m in California, the type of fuel that’s mandated is hard on fuel systems,” Bass said. “This truck had six fuel injectors that were carbon-fouled and locked into the cylinder head. Getting those things out could have taken two days.”

ProMAXX Tool’s NEW Air Hammer-Assisted 6.7L Fuel Injector Puller made it quick and easy.

“This tool helped turn a days long job into a repair of about two minutes per injector,” said Bass. “And, I was able to pass the time savings on to the happy customer.”

Brian Dull is a Sr. Master Tech with more than 45 years experience. When removing stuck fuel injectors on Ford 6.7L engines, he previously used the tool recommended by the factory.

“High mileage commercial vehicles like bucket trucks, construction vehicles and others that work hard have especially tough-to-pull fuel injectors,” Dull said.

“Now I use the ProMAXX Tool solution. About 75 percent of the time the kit’s slide hammer works just fine, he said. “When the going gets tough, I use the air hammer-assisted punch for a fast fix.”

Because the lift kit does not require bolting and unbolting to the cylinder head, each injector comes off in less than five minutes. That’s FAST!

Circle 39 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on 1121 Boyce Rd Ste. 2000 Pittsburgh, PA 15241 724-941-0941 NEW Air Hammer-Assisted Fuel Injector Removal Kits VISIT WWW.PROMAXXTOOL.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION Pull Stubborn and Stuck Fuel Injectors with Ease... Every Time POWER STROKE: PMXPWP200PRO DURAMAX: PMXPWP220PRO PMXPWA115D/PMXPWA115DPRO NEW Ford 3.5L EcoBoost Direct & Indirect Fuel Injector Removal Kit PMXPWA110 PMXPWA112 OTHER FORD FUEL INJECTOR REMOVAL 2403PTEN_ProMAXX.indd 1 2/20/24 8:32 AM
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theft. GPS antennas are typically an area that thieves try to disable by disconnecting critical cabling during theft often damag-

ing harnesses. This is something a technician needs to be aware of when troubleshooting GPS-related faults.


Some vehicle manufacturers can provide support for crime investigations. Today it is not uncommon for law enforcement to quickly survey a crime scene looking for vehicles supporting such technologies. If the vehicle has its “security mode” active, the official can trigger vehicle recording, record the VIN, and then contact the vehicle manufacturer to obtain video recordings (Figure 1).


As vehicles have become more “cloud” connected and reliant on computer networks, the risk of cyberattacks has naturally increased. Gateway security systems act as firewalls, control-

PTEN MARCH 2024 20
 The starting point of vehicle security – the basic door lock.
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Photo courtesy of Scott Brown

ling access to the vehicle’s network and protecting critical safety systems such as collision mitigation and other systems supporting lateral and longitudinal control of the vehicle. These systems are crucial for preventing unauthorized access and ensuring vehicle safety. Some vehicle manufacturers have deployed systems that authenticate the user at the vehicle performing service, creating a trail of vehicle access because of the potential for misuse.


In 2015, two security researchers Chris Valasek and Charlie Miller exposed significant vulnerabilities in Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) vehicles, demonstrating remote hacking by taking control of a vehicle underway on public roads. In response, FCA issued software updates and recalled affected vehicles, highlighting the industry’s need for constant vigilance and adaptation in cybersecurity. This activity paved the way for the AutoAuth program in place today. See my article from 2022 on this subject:


Recent rulings by the European Union (EU) against FCA’s secure gateway system may have a significant impact on secure gateway access. In the fall of 2023, questions surfaced about the balance between security and accessibility for vehicle servicing. Currently, FCA is authenticating both the end user and the tool being used to access the vehicle systems residing behind the gateway. General Motors (GM) has had a secure gateway for many years now which has mainly gone unnoticed by service personnel. GM decided long ago that they would be able to secure the vehicle with little to no disruption to the technician. Other manufacturers have either recently introduced a gateway or will be implementing such a system soon. The EU rulings will likely have an impact on how manufacturers authenticate access to vehicle systems.


Professional service technicians use various tools to handle vehicle security operations, including diagnostic scanners and software for accessing vehicle systems along with the previously mentioned service information and professional support channels. While these tools are vital for legitimate servicing, there is great concern about tool misuse to support vehicle theft. In MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 21
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fact, some professional service operators have experienced theft of their diagnostic and service tools primarily because of their ability to support vehicle theft. The National Automotive Service Task Force (NASTF) is currently working with some vehicle and tool manufacturers to investigate ways to secure access to these tools and how they access vehicle systems for service.


Some vehicle manufacturers have recently experienced vulnerabilities that allowed unauthorized vehicle access. One example is that a private CAN bus was physically accessed from outside the vehicle where the bad actor injects a message onto the network spoofing the security system to authenticate and authorize vehicle access. As you can see, these vulnerabilities expose weaknesses in automotive security. This raises even more concerns about vehicle safety and security.


It’s safe to say that Tesla is known as a software company first and a vehicle manufacturer second. As a Tesla owner over the past five years, I have witnessed how advanced and evolutionary their vehicle technology is. Their over-the-air (OTA) updates provide a pathway to deliver vehicle improvements, quick deployment of enhanced vehicle operation, and, of course, support service personnel with problem-solving. Adding keys, programming key cards, authorizing mobile devices and key fobs is a simple operation. Tesla has designed

PTEN MARCH 2024 22
Relay Station Attack (RSA) ATTACKER 2 CAR OWNER ATTACKER 1 125 kHz 125 kHz 433 MHz 433 MHz DON’T CARE
p Figure 3 — Relay station attack Photo courtesy of Scott Brown p Figure 2 — Tesla add a key Photo courtesy of Scott Brown

the system so that the vehicle owner can easily carry out these tasks (Figure 2).

Recently, Tesla deployed a secure access method through NASTF where a vehicle security professional (VSP) can request secure access to the vehicle through Tesla’s system which requires the vehicle owner to grant access through their account.


A relay attack is where a vehicle that doesn’t require a physical key (push button start) is spoofed into thinking that the key fob or authenticated mobile device is near the vehicle. This method typically involves two perps establishing a relay attack station (Figure 3) where one attempts to pick up the key fob signal with an antenna from inside a building or on the person (think shopping at the grocery store) and relay the authentication handshake communication to another person near the vehicle. I’ve seen many videos of this process taking place, and it’s quite perplexing. It makes me think about how these innovative technologies can leave many vehicles vulnerable. Tesla offers an additional layer of security where the owner can set up a PIN to drive. Other manufacturers may offer something similar.


Automotive security is an ever-evolving arena that requires continuous adaptation and advancement. Professional service personnel engaging in automotive service will continue to see more challenges related to security. Service success is highly dependent on the knowledge and skill levels service professionals maintain and the capabilities of their tooling. Consumers will also require updated knowledge and, in my opinion, this is where the trusted service professional can build credibility with their clients through education and the demonstration of service professionalism.

SCOTT BROWN is an ASE Master Certified L1 Technician and has over 37 years of professional service industry experience. He is an independent shop owner in Southern California and is engaged at various levels within the industry. He has a deep understanding of the challenges technicians experience at the service level and is continuously striving to move the industry forward through education and networking. Brown founded Diagnostic Network ( after 22 years of service at iATN, where he retired as company president in 2018.

23 2403PTEN_NuTec-H&S.indd 1 2/15/24 4:38 PM
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Is your shop ready for a service EVolution?

The auto industry is investing more than $1 trillion into shifting new vehicle production from internal combustion power to electric. Forecasters estimate EVs could account for up to one third of the North American market by 2029. And with dozens of electric models from domestic and import brands already on the road, chances are good that if you haven’t yet had an EV in your shop, you will soon enough.

Whether you’re planning to handle battery swaps or just routine EV maintenance, investing in technical training and equipment will ensure you’re ready when the time comes.

How to lift

Most EVs are designed with their high-voltage batteries under the vehicle. The battery packs are large – taking up most of the undercarriage – and heavy. As a result, the OEM-recommended lifting points are often on the far edges of the vehicle frame.

To safely lift an EV, you’ll need a vehicle lift with sufficient rated capacity and the capability to engage with the lifting points. Leading equipment manufacturer BendPak, Inc. has re-engineered its two-post lifts to meet the challenges of EV service.

The new BendPak AP Series two-post lifts feature a patent-pending swing arm design that offers greater extension and retraction than ever to reach even the most difficult lifting points. And their low profile means you can access both in-close and far-out lifting points without damaging vehicle ground effects.

For extra strength and peace of mind, BendPak strategically increased the high-strength steel used in critical load-holding components and invented an Automatic Swing Arm Restraint System (ASARS) designed to prevent dangerous, unplanned movement of the lift arms. ASARS offers twice as much holding grip as traditional systems and can withstand more than 2,000 pounds of side force if an improperly spotted vehicle shifts during service.

AP Series lifts are the most customizable, versatile two-post lifts BendPak has ever made, providing excellent return on investment. They offer the convenience of wide or narrow installation and their BI-METRIC swing arms enable a single lift to be used for both symmetric and asymmetric lifting. A choice of heights can accommodate cars, SUVs and even high-roof cargo vans — regardless of powertrain.

How to lower

To ergonomically remove a high-voltage battery pack, you’ll want to invest in a lifting table. BendPak’s new Mobi-EVS™ battery pack and powertrain lifting system makes it easy to lift, lower and position high-voltage batteries, as well as internal combustion engines, transmissions, fuel tanks, transaxle assemblies and more. Its compact design and easy-glide swivel casters let this spacesaving scissor lift move effortlessly throughout the shop.

The Mobi-EVS delivers wireless, rechargeable electric/hydraulic operation which improves operator efficiency by eliminating the need for a manual hand crank or foot pump. Its twin-cylinder design provides maximum load stability for lifting and lowering, while an automatic safety lock system secures a massive 4,500 pounds at working heights up to 75". The Mobi-EVS also comes standard with an impact-resistant UHMW protective cover on the lift table.

BENDPAK 30440 Agoura Road Agoura Hills, CA 91301 USA (800) 253-2363 Circle 46 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on
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Back to basics with brake service

Though a brake job isn’t anything new for most technicians, it’s in those everyday tasks that you run the risk of forming bad habits.

There’s not much I can tell you guys about performing a basic brake job that you don’t already know. We’ve all done it a thousand times. The thing is, a thousand brake jobs create a thousand opportunities to develop some bad habits. So what

do you say we review elemental disc brake job etiquette?


It’s crucial to know if there are any brake-related symptoms before putting the vehicle up on the lift. Look

for brake noise, pulsation, and a low brake pedal during your road test. A brake pulsation that causes the steering wheel to shimmy originates from the front brakes. If you feel the pulsation in the seat, it’s coming from the rear. This way, you know what to look for during the visual inspection.

p Figure 1 — The Matco Tools impact wrench being used along with the Sunex Custom Wheels Socket. Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple

If you feel a front brake pulsation, before pulling the wheels, shake the front suspension. Loose steering and suspension components can cause the steering wheel to shimmy when braking, causing a misdiagnosis.

The first step of the brake system visual inspection is to pull the wheels. I use a Matco Tools 1/2” High Torque 20V Impact Wrench to remove the lug nuts; lots of torque, no air hose. When removing lug nuts on custom wheels, I use Sunex Tools Custom Wheel Sockets to protect the finish (Figure 1).

There are plenty of types of gauges to measure brake pad lining thickness. I like using the OTC 6596 Brake Pad Gauge because it gives an accurate measurement and, in some cases, allows the technician to measure the outboard brake pad without removing


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R134A Fully Automatic

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p Figure 2 — The OTC gauge fits easily alongside the caliper for an accurate brake pad measurement.
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Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple
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the wheel (Figure 2).

A careful inspection of the rotor is essential. Choppy lines that extend from the hub to the edge of the rotor indicate a pulsation, as does an uneven wear pattern around the face of the rotor. High ridges along the inside and outside edges are noise makers. The rotor thickness should be measured and referenced against specs to verify there is enough room to remove the ridges. I use my Central Tools Micrometer to determine rotor thickness (Figure 3). Figure 4 shows a rotor that we measured to determine runout before machining. As you can see, this one is within specs.


Most brake calipers are attached to the knuckle or axle with a bracket. As you know, removing both components as

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p Figure 3 — I use my Central Tools micrometer to determine rotor thickness. Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple












an assembly is possible. If you plan to replace the brake pads, this is a bad idea because you need to access the slide pins. I use a Milwaukee Tool 3/8” drive 12V Battery-Powered Ratchet to remove the caliper to bracket hardware. You can see how old and beat up my Milwaukee ratchet is by looking at Figure 5 . Sometimes, the caliper slides are integral to the hardware, but others are separate. I use my 1/2” impact to remove the bracket bolts and the bracket. This is a good time to check the caliper piston for leakage. Any dampness around the piston dust boot is bad.

We’ve all had to deal with rotors that are frozen to the face of the hub. Do not hit the rotor with a hammer. Even hitting the hub portion of the rotor, between the wheel studs, can cause rotor warpage. The best way to remove stuck-on rotors is with an air hammer. I use a Chicago Pneumatic Air

10 Piece Wheel Stud Pin Hanger Set

Cat. No. 65180

These versitile, color-coded pins make tire changing a breeze on many European vehicles.

•Packaged in an EVA foam tray

•Helps align and stabilize brake discs

•All sizes available individually

•M16 x 1.5 pins for use on 2014-2020 Dodge Ram ProMaster

Set includes two of each: M12 x 1.25, M12 x 1.5, M14 x 1.25, M14 x 1.5, and M16 x 1.5 pins MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 29
for application chart
 Figure 4— This shows a rotor that we measured to determine runout before machining.
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Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple

Hammer that delivers 1,800 blows per minute. Using a smoothing hammer bit, go around the rotor, hammering between the wheel studs. This breaks the rust seal and loosens the rotor without causing damage.


I am a big fan of the on-car brake lathe. The on-car brake lathe resurfaces the rotor on the hub, eliminating the need to remove the rotor, and producing a more accurate rotor surface. We use a Pro-Cut PFM 9.2 On-Car Brake Lathe. You can see in Figure 6 that the oncar setup is quick and straightforward. The industry standard states that up to a 0.015” cut is acceptable per pass, per side, whether you choose to use an on-car or a standard brake lathe. I think 0.015” per cut is too much. You’ll find that you’ll get a much cleaner cut

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p Figure 5 — I use a Milwaukee 3/8” drive 12V battery-powered ratchet to remove the caliper to bracket hardware.
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Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple

if you keep it under 0.010” per cut. Remove the ridges before making the first pass, and measure the rotor thickness when finished.


Retracting the caliper piston is not as simple as pushing the caliper back with a large pair of pliers. The fluid behind the caliper forces fluid back into the master cylinder reservoir. This creates a problem if there isn’t room in the reservoir for the backflow of fluid and a spill of corrosive brake fluid if the reservoir cap is removed. This is why it’s advised to open the bleeder screw before retracting the piston. There’s also another reason to open the bleeder screw. I’m sure you’ve noticed the color of the initial fluid that comes out when bleeding a brake caliper. The brake fluid that resides in the caliper can easily reach temperatures of over 200 degrees F. Pushing that fluid out of the system when performing a brake service is advisable.

Using pliers in place of the proper tool can cause the piston to slant when retracting, damaging the caliper piston seal. The Orion Motor Tech Tools Caliper Retraction Tool is an excellent, inexpensive tool for front and rear calipers. Figure 7 shows how the tool fits into the grooves on the rear caliper piston, allowing for easy piston retraction. A screw-type retracting tool allows the technician to feel the resistance as the piston slides back into the caliper. There should be minimal resistance with the bleeder screw open. MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 31
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p Figure 6 — We use a Pro-Cut PFM 9.2 on-car brake lathe; the on-car setup is quick and straightforward. Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple


Tests compression on all domestic and foreign cars and light trucks with gasoline engines, including mini engines

M68 gauge has a dual scale dial with ranges from 0-300 PSI and 0-21 bar; includes durable boot for protection

24" extension hose

Rear calipers with integral parking brakes retract by turning the piston onto the actuator screw. Most turn clockwise, but be careful; some models retract counter-clockwise, and turning the piston in the wrong direction can damage the caliper. Rear calipers with integral electric parking brakes must enter service mode before disassembly. Reference the service manual.




After the pistons are retracted and the rotors are resurfaced, it is time to assemble the brakes. Compare the brake pads to the originals. Look for any discrepancies in the design. Some brake pads have small alignment pins on the back. Ensure the pads you are installing have the pins in the same location. Sometimes, inboard and outboard pads are determined by the location of these pins. Rear calipers with an integral parking brake use these pins to align the pad to the machined opening on the caliper piston. Be sure to align these pins with the caliper. Depending on the manufacturer, there are many differences between inboard and outboard brake pads. Scrutinize the pads before installation.

Improper installation can cause a brake squeak. Customers hate to hear noises coming from their newly purchased brake job. Proper lubrication is the first step to prevent brake noise. I use Motorcraft Caliper Slide Grease. This is a silicone-based lubricant that works great to lube the friction points on the caliper. Apply lube where the caliper and the caliper bracket meet. Also, lube the pads where they contact the caliper. If the caliper uses removable pins, lube the pins before installation. Don’t over-apply the grease. Too much lube attracts road debris that can lead to brake noise.

Brake noise can also emanate from the friction between the back of the brake pad and the caliper piston. Some

 Figure 7 — This shows how the Orion Motor Tech Tools caliper retraction tool fits into the grooves on the rear caliper piston, allowing for easy piston retraction. Photo courtesy of Roy Dennis Ripple
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Performance Tool

18-pc Brake Caliper Wind Back Kit

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Car Certified Tools

Electric Brake Bleeder

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Akebono Brake Corp.

Proact Ultra-Premium Disc Brake Pad Kits

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new brake pads come with a tacky substance already applied to the brake pad. When that’s not the case, I apply CRC Disc Brake Quiet to the back of the pads to prevent brake squeaks.

Be sure to torque all brake hardware and lug nuts. Too tight can cause just as many problems as too loose. My Mac Tools 1/2” Drive Torque Wrench has a flexible head that makes it easy to get at the caliper bolts behind the steering knuckle.

After assembly, road test the vehicle as the customer would on their way to Walmart. No need to “ride the brakes to break them in.” No noise, with a good solid pedal, means a good solid brake job.

DENNIS RIPPLE is a Ford Senior Master Technician and an ASE Master Technician with more than 30 years' experience in the automotive industry. As an automotive journalist, he is the recipient of a 2020 Azbees Award and a 2020 Tabbies Award. Ripple is currently working fulltime as the shop foreman at a Ford dealership. He lives in New Jersey with his wife, three dogs, and two motorcycles. He can be reached at

CTA Manufacturing

Pro Series Brake Bleeder Adapters and Tank

Circle 59 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 33 OEMTOOLS Brake Caliper Piston Rewind Tool Set Circle 60 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on HEAVY DUTY BOXES OVER 1,700 BOX SIZES ALWAYS IN STOCK π SHIPPING SUPPLY SPECIALISTS COMPLETE CATALOG 1-800-295-5510 ORDER BY 6 PM FOR SAME DAY SHIPPING ROY
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GEDORE Thread Reset Tool

Reviewed by Matt Fanslow, diagnostic tech/shop manager at Riverside Automotive in Red Wing, Minnesota.

Q: How did the tool function as far as saving you time?

A: In the event that a wheel stud is damaged, we can do a quality repair without replacing the stud.

Q: How easy was it to use?

A: The tool is very easy and intuitive to use but it’s worth taking a minute to scan over the manual that is included as it is well written.

Q: What features did you like?

A: The premise of the tool is that in


The GEDORE Thread Reset Tool, No. KL-0173-602 KA, repairs damaged threads without compromising the wheel stud’s strength. The tool offers chipless repair, uses roll-forming technology, and can service the wheel stud in just 30 seconds, says the company. All the user needs to do is attach the tool to the wheel stud, use their 41mm socket wrench, remove it, and the repair is finished. This kit covers all makes and models on the road.

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the event of damaged threads, one would use a thread chaser or “die” to recut threads. The issue is cutting. You remove material leaving weaker threads than what was previously there. In many cases, you were better off replacing the stud. With the GEDORE Thread Reset Tool, you are “rolling”. Very little, if any, material is removed thus the threads are inherently stronger than if we were to cut via a chaser.

Q: How was its packaging? Did it come with any accessories?

A: The tool comes in a sturdy case with a foam insert for all the pieces to fit in nicely. Luckily, it’s not challenging with square pegs and round holes.

Q: Was there a manual included? If so, did you use the manual, and was the manual easy to understand?

A: Yes, there was a manual placed right on top of the tools when the case was opened. The manual is well-written.

Q: What types of jobs/repairs did you use this tool for?

A: Any work involving damaged threads on wheel studs where it’s deemed reasonable to repair versus replace. This

tool should allow for more repair than conventional dies or chasers in that it doesn’t remove material as it rolls rather than cuts.

Q: Have you used a previous version of this tool? If so, what are some new features compared to the old version?

A: Not technically. We had thread chasers, not from GEDORE, and found that often we’d elect to replace studs rather than chase threads and send a vehicle out with weak threads.

Q: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate this tool overall? Why?

A: I would give this a 10. It allowed us to repair threads on a few wheel studs that are pretty painful to replace. Visually we could see that the threads aren’t cut and therefore essentially smaller and weaker than before chasing. This gave us confidence that we performed a quality repair.

MATT FANSLOW is the shop manager for Riverside Automotive, an all makes/all models independent repair shop in Red Wing, Minnesota. He has over 27 years of experience in the automotive industry and is an ASE Master Certified Technician (A1-A8) and an L1 Automobile Advanced Engine Performance Specialist. He also has his own podcast, Matt Fanslow Diagnosing the A ermarket A to Z, that provides a wide-open perspective on all aspects of the automotive a ermarket from a working diagnosticians’ point of view. To listen to his latest podcast episode and others, visit In 2021, Fanslow was the recipient of the AAPEX Technician of the Year award.

PTEN MARCH 2024 34
This product was given to the reviewer free of charge from the manufacturer.

K-Tool Professional Necklight

Reviewed by Brian Culotta, shop foreman and master technician at Dave’s Auto Care in Willoughby, Ohio.

Q: How did the tool function as far as saving you time?

A: Technicians are constantly in need of proper lighting when repairing vehicles. Having a light source available without the need to hold it will increase your efficiency in the workplace.


The K-Tool International Rechargeable Neck Worklight, No. KTIXD5523, is water-resistant, oil-resistant, and grease-resistant. The light is half a pound with an IP54 rating and an ergonomic design for increased comfortability. At its full capacity, the light delivers 300 lm of brightness, and 150 lm at half capacity, with the ability to dim across a broad band of brightness levels. A flexible gooseneck design allows for directional capability, and magnets on the back of the light enable mounting onto metal surfaces. The light has a charging time of 3.5 hours and a run-time of three to six hours.

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Q: How easy was it to use?

A: This light is set up very similar to other necklights. There are two buttons, one on each light end. These buttons allow the user to adjust the brightness of the light and turn the light on.

Q: How was its packaging? Did it come with any accessories?

A: The light came with a USBC charging cord and is rechargeable.

Q: Was there a manual included? If so, did you use the manual, and was it easy to understand?

A: A brief note card of instructions was included, however, the light’s functions were self-explanatory.

Q: What features did you like?

A: The light has flexible ends to adjust where the light is pointing. Whether you need light up, down, left, or right, an easy flex to the legs of the product and you have light right where you need it. This is slightly different than other brands’ models. Most have a ratcheting pivot point that can wear out or only up and down adjustments.

Q: Is there any way you could think to improve or add to this tool?

A: The product could be more conforming to different neck sizes. The battery is in the back of the neck and is slightly uncomfortable and not adjustable. The fixed position of the rear battery section that hugs your neck was a bit too tight for me.

Q: What types of jobs/repairs do you use this tool for?

A: I use this light primarily during chassis wheel alignments. It’s very convenient to have light suspended by your neck instead of your hands when making adjustments to alignment angles on a vehicle. I also find this light convenient to use during digital vehicle inspections (DVI) when taking photos using a tablet. The extra light is necessary for a good photo for the customer to see in their inspection. Not all tablets have a flash and/or enough light to take a proper photo.

Q: Have you used a previous version of this tool?

A: I have used other ratcheting headstyle necklights and have had the pivoting joints break. This product does not have a mechanical joint to wear out. The legs can be flexed into the correct positions.

Q: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate this tool overall? Why?

A: A nine – an adjustable size to the rear section of the tool would be my biggest complaint.

BRIAN CULOTTA is a graduate of the Universal Technical Institute in Chicago, Illinois. A er graduating, he started working for an independent car dealership as a lead technician for seven years. He then moved to a new job at an independent repair shop where he stayed for three years. He now works at Dave’s Auto Care in Willoughby, Ohio, as the shop foreman and ASE Master L1, L3 technician.

This product was given to the reviewer free of charge from the manufacturer.

GripEdge Tools RPT Hex Bit Socket Set

Reviewed by Mario Rojas, shop foreman at Autobahn Performance in Oakland Park, Florida.

Q: How did the tool/equipment function as far as saving you time?

A: It saved me plenty of time from being wasted on rounded-off Allen bolts.

Q: How has using this tool impacted your shop’s profitability?

A: It has preserved it.


The GripEdge Tools 7-pc 3/8” Drive Short Metric RPT Hex Driver Set, No. GE7BSMHSRPT, is designed to replace traditional hex tools and prevent damaging and rounding of Hex fasteners. Sizes included in this set are 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 7mm, 8mm, 9mm, and 10mm. The patented bidirectional design enables the loosening and tightening of new and damaged Hex fasteners. Made with S2 steel for increased strength and durability. The oversized roll stamping and inkfilled size markings increase visibility. Circle 64 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on

Q: How easy was it to use?

A: It’s easier to use than just about any tool I can think of.

Q: How was its packaging? Did it come with any accessories?

A: The packaging was nice, and it included a short non-magnetic socket rail as well.

Q: What features did you like?

A: I like its ability to grip rounded bolts. I also like that they can work on Torx bolts at times, and the Hi-Vis marking on it easily stands out in a toolbox.

Q: Is there any way you could think to improve or add to this tool?

A: Some short, one-piece versions of this would be pretty cool to see in the future.

Q: What types of jobs/repairs did you use this tool for?

A: I rounded off head bolts on a Porsche. It also helped me remove a stuck rounded-off Allen bolt from an adjustable gas block, and it saved us on a couple of rounded-off engine oil drain plugs.

Q: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate this tool overall? Why?

A: I would rate this tool a nine because it works great, but with European vehicles, access is key, and a shorter profile would be handy. Also, the rail, although an accessory, would be nice if it had a strong magnetic rail to attach to my toolbox.

Watch this product in action here:

MARIO ROJAS is an L1 ASE Master certified Diagnostic Technician from Miami, Florida. He first began working on cars as a way to supplement his income until finally stepping into the industry full-time in 2013. He’s now working at Autobahn Performance, a shop that specializes in European vehicles. Rojas also shares some of his work on his YouTube channel, Super Mario Diagnostics, in the hopes that his audience will appreciate what it takes to troubleshoot and repair the modern automobile, and to steer everyone into continued training.

PTEN MARCH 2024 36
This product was given to the reviewer free of charge from the manufacturer.

Streamlight Stylus Pro Haz-Lo Flashlight

Reviewed by John Baumgardt, owner, operator, and technician at Baumgardt’s Auto Repair in Fillmore, Indiana.

Q: How did the tool/equipment function as far as saving you time?

A: Its small size with clip and light weight made it easy to keep with me.

Q: What kind of setup was involved before using the product?

A: Unscrew the rear of the flashlight, insert the two AAA batteries that are included, and then reinstall the rear of the flashlight.

Q: How easy was it to use?

A: It was as easy as pushing the button on the back of the light. Slightly


The Streamlight Stylus Pro HazLo Flashlight features a push-button tail cap switch for momentary and constant operation and is powered by two AAA alkaline batteries. Using high-power white LEDs, the light can deliver 105 lm, 380 candela over a beam distance of 39m and a run-time of 2.25 hours. Additionally. the light features a removable metal clip that aids in Foreign Object Debris (FOD) reduction, an unbreakable polycarbonate lens, and an impact and chemical-resistant resin. Available in high-visibility yellow, the Stylus Pro is IPX7-rated for waterproof operation to 1m for 30 minutes, and it is 2m impact resistance tested..

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push the button for the light to be on momentarily or push until it clicks for the light to be steadily on, then push again to turn it off.

Q: How was its packaging? Did it come with any accessories?

A: Nicely packaged in an illustrated box. It came with an attached pocket clip that is removable.

Q: Was there a manual included? If so, did you use the manual, and was the manual easy to understand?

A: Yes, one small manual is included that was in several languages.

Q: Is there any way you could think to improve or add to this tool?

A: I wish there was a way to connect a wrist tether to it. Brake cleaner did have an effect on the plastic body of the flashlight, but it remained waterproof.

Q: What features did you like?

A: This is a no-frills light. It has a nice bright beam that lights things up well. The Hi-Vis stands out well and waterproofing is a plus. Its construction makes it safe to use around batteries and electricity.

Q: What types of jobs/repairs did you use this tool for?

A: I used it for some quick inspections and

miscellaneous small jobs where the room was limited for the use of a larger light. I was able to hold it in my mouth and didn’t have to worry about breaking my teeth.

Q: Have you used a previous version of this tool? If so, what are some new features compared to the old version?

A: I have used Streamlight flashlights over the years and have always been happy with the quality. I feel the same about this light.

Q: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate this tool overall? Why?

A: I would rate this a nine. It’s safe around electrical circuits and batteries, as well as waterproof, hi-vis, lightweight, and has a good battery life. However, the chemical resistance failed against brake cleaner. I suggest avoiding contact with it if possible.


is the owner/operator of Baumgardt’s Auto Repair in Fillmore, Indiana. He has been a professional auto tech for about 20 years. He attended the two-year Auto Mechanics program at Lancaster Vocational High School. Previously, Baumgardt worked at AAMCO Transmissions and earned about a dozen AAMCO certificates. He believes it’s important to provide an honest, quality service that people can depend on. MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 37
This product was given to the reviewer free of charge from the manufacturer.

LTI Tools by Milton Shockit Diesel NOx and Particulate Sensor Removal Kit, No. LT966D

Q & A with Jeff Del Rossa, general manager of the specialty tool group for Milton Industries.

Q: What makes this product so innovative?

A: It’s really a number of different reasons and I’ll focus on the top three. Number one, we focus on productivity. There are fewer technicians out in the market today and there’s a longer line of customers wanting to get their cars or their trucks serviced. So, when we focus on productivity, it’s ‘How do we get the technician to be more productive and more efficient in making these repairs?’

Number two, we really want to have versatility. When a technician invests in a tool, is it just one application it can do, or can it do multiple applications? What I love about the 996 is, yeah, it’s a particulate NOx sensor, but it can remove basically any 22- or 24- or 30mm nut or bolt because incorporates a lot of the technology we use in Shockit. The other thing it does is it has harmonic vibration. Any technician knows that when you have a stubborn fastener if you hit it with a hammer or you shock it with one of the technologies from LTI, we can help remove that faster.

The other thing is reach. Today engine compartments are smaller. So, the capability of getting at it with our kit and the punch that comes with the kit is ideal. So those are the three things that were primarily top of mind that caused us to develop this.

Q: What has been the feedback from technicians who’ve purchased this tool?

A: All fantastic. What they really like is, again, the versatility of the product, being able to use it not just on particulate NOx sensors, but anywhere where they have limited access or reach is a problem. One other thing that’s evident in the construction of the Shockit LT996 product is it’s heavy duty, it’s cast machine precision, and because it’s slotted, they can slip it over a hydraulic line, they can slip it over a NOx particulate sensor. The versatility is unmatched, and in combination with the vibration that we can create with the air hammer and the articulated punch, all those components make a very powerful system.

Q: Anything else our readers should know?

A: The other thing I love about this tool is that not only will it remove a sender out of a bung, for example, on an exhaust system, but if they find that the bung is the problem, they can rethread it. The 996 comes with a chasing component on the back of the socket, so they can chase the threads, clean up the bung, and put it back in. If the sender is not faulty, they can clean up the threads on the sender by just rethreading or chasing the threads on the sender in addition to removing it with the Shockit Socket.

PTEN is the only publication to feature the prestigious “Innovation Awards”. Every year since 1999, the Innovation Awards highlight the newest and most innovative products introduced to the automotive aftermarket. For 2023, PTEN received over 100 submitted product entries in 26 categories. We will be featuring the top scoring products in monthly Innovation Award Profiles. To view a full list of winners online, visit:

The Innovation Awards honor companies that take their products to another level and offer unique features that make a technician’s job easier. If you would like to submit a product to be considered for the 2024 Innovation Awards, entries are open now. Visit for more details.

To view the full interview, visit:

Batteries make the world go round, or, at the very least, cars. Having the right tools in your arsenal to perform work on battery and electrical systems is essential, especially as EVs make their way into the mainstream markets. Whether it’s a charger, a battery tester, jump starters, or even some insulated pliers, it’s never a bad idea to add more to your toolbox.


The MVT Battery and Electrical System Tester from Midtronics is designed to bring accuracy and efficiency to battery diagnostics, making it an ideal tool for automotive technicians and quick service centers. The MVT features a 3.5” color display, an intuitive user interface, a rechargeable internal battery, and comes with field-replaceable cables. It provides a diagnosis of discharged batteries in the vehicle, eliminating the need for charging, and offers reliable battery diagnosis in the presence of vehicle system noise interruptions. It also provides battery diagnosis when the cold cranking amps rating is not visible as well as provides instant test results with no user input required in most quick lane testing scenarios.

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The Bosch BAT6120-US High-Power

Battery Charger and

Power Supply is a multi-functional battery support solution for automotive shops. Functions dependably as an efficient and fast battery charger for lead acid and lithium batteries, or as a 120A continuous power supply. The BAT6120-US can update charging characteristics via USB, offers a large four-color LCD, and is ideal for operating on a desk, bench, or floor, and is also wall-mountable.

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The DeWalt EV 240V Charger is equipped with a 25’ high-grade UL-certified cable and delivers up to 46 mph of charge. The current can be adjusted from 12A to 40A, while the smart charging station features an easy-to-read LCD screen and is compatible with all SAE J1772 EVs. The charger features a heavy duty protective cage, keeping it safe from scratches and dents from rough environments. The charging gun is engineered with a rubber anti-slip grip to resist any impact while maintaining a comfortable charging experience. The charger has 10 safety features, including overvoltage, overcurrent, overheat, overcharge, and surge protection.

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PTEN MARCH 2024 40 Category
550 Start Assist Amps (10L gas/diesel)
Effective on totally dead (0.0V) batteries - UL2743-certified for safe operation - Quick, efficient and easy recharging - 40” cable reach
it’s lithium or
a JNC, it’s
No. JNC345 12 Volt Jump Starter and Power Supply Jump Starting Made Easy with Jump-N-Carry 40” CABLE REACH
lead acid, shops and
know that when they
going to work.
lithium units deliver exceptional
supreme convenience,
safety and long unit life.
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The Battery Charger and Analyzer, No. 6021AGM, from Associated Equipment is designed to provide 6V, 12V, and 24V charging capabilities for vehicle batteries including AGM and EFB. The charger also has a manual mode with the ability to adjust the time up to 180 minutes, safety features, as well as safe start and auto restart in the AGM setting. Additionally, the charger performs an automated load test and automatic surface charge removal and will notify the user if the battery is out of the parameters for conducting the load test.

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The Gray Tools 16-pc Insulated Hex Bit Socket Set , No. 25016-I, features both SAE and metric sizes and comes in a carrying case with a foam organizer. All pieces have dual-layer insulation, providing user protection up to 1,000V in a variety of electrical applications. The set includes seven SAE sockets ranging from 1/8” to 3/8”, seven metric hex head sockets from 4mm to 10mm, an insulated 42-tooth round head ratchet, and a 3” extension attachment. Each bit has its size marked for easy identification. Every piece in the set undergoes a multi-step insulation process to meet compliance with ASTM F1505 standards.

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The 8-in-1 Insulated Precision Screwdriver Set with Case , No. 32584INSR, from Klein Tools features an insulated handle and blade which are 1,000V rated for protection against electric shock. The interchangeable blade locks into the handle for quick and easy changeouts, while the Cushion-Grip handle allows for greater torque and comfortability. Additional features include a spin cap for increased control and a durable roll pouch for protective storage and portability.

Circle 72 on card or click “PTEN e-inquiry” on MARCH 2024 PROFESSIONAL TOOL & EQUIPMENT NEWS 41 Battery & Electrical Service Tools TAP EXTRACTORS Tapping into good ideas for 115 years. Remove broken taps simply and safely –without drilling, lasers, damaged threads, scrapped parts or repair inserts. 2403PTEN_Walton.indd 1 2/15/24 4:43 PM LisLe Corporation CurrentLy pays royaLties to over 120 individuaLs. Lisle has been in business for over 110 years and for over 40 years have been working with individuals on an award or royalty basis. If you have an original tool idea which others may need, we have a procedure to evaluate your idea. Respond now to request an idea disclosure packet. P.O. Box 89 • Clarinda, IA 51632-0089 712-542-5101 • Fax 712-542-6591 turn your tooL idea into Money Contact your sales representative at, for advertising information.

The everything toolbox

‘When you work on everything, you gotta have everything,‘ which means your toolbox has to be ready for everything.

Shop owner and automotive technician Steve Keim has been in the automotive repair industry for about 30 years, and for the past eight, he’s run his own shop, very aptly named Steve’s Shop in Garden City, Kansas. His shop houses three employees including himself, eight toolboxes, and “about every tool known to man.”

“When you work on everything,” Keim says, “You gotta have everything.”

And considering his shop has worked on everything – boats, campers, motorcycles, heavy duty equipment, etc. –except airplanes, Keim needs a place, or in his case places, to store all the tools and equipment to get whatever repair job that comes into his shop done.

Steve Keim

Shop: Steve's Shop

Location: Garden City, Kansas


Between Keim’s eight toolboxes, one stands out amongst the others – the 25’ long Mr. Big setup from Snap-on. The setup started out at just 12’, but has had many additions over the past five years, including five side lockers, an 84” overhead cabinet, and a 60” doublebank drawer section.

During his time as a technician, Keim has owned just about every toolbox you could think of, but he decided to go with Snap-on for his setup for two reasons – the payment plan and the name brand. Just like your vehicle

or any other fancy product you want, Keim noted he wanted to buy the “high end” of toolboxes for his tools.

His favorite parts of the setup are the power drawers, as they allow users to plug in the batteries for their power tools, which Keim finds to be a very “handy” feature. Keim’s favorite part of his setup matches perfectly with his favorite battery-operated tools.

“Once they came out with batteryoperated tools, that was a game changer,” Keim says, “Compared to having air [tools] everywhere having battery [tools] is amazing.”


Keim likes to keep his tools very organized.

“I’ve got everything from foam that each tool goes into a foam spot to like grid plates where every socket goes on a certain grid, and got holders for everything,” he says, “It’s very fancy.”

Inside his large setup, Keim keeps all the shop’s specialty tools. Some of the tools are only used once a month and others only come once every two years. In the other smaller seven toolboxes around the shop, Keim has two of setup as computer stations, which can move from bay to bay as needed, another three filled with mobile hand tools, that can go wherever the techs need them to go, and the last two used as spillover storage for what won’t fit in the large setup.

In the future, Keim would like to expand the large setup. He hopes to consolidate all the specialty tools into one setup instead of the tools being spread across three.

“I would really like to add more drawers to it,” Keim says, “That way I can possibly get rid of a couple of the smaller [toolboxes].”

Want to see more photos of Keim's box?


Want to show off YOUR Big-Time Box? For more information, email

Steve Keim's 25' long toolbox setup houses all his shop's specialty tools. Photo courtesy of Snap-on
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