Some if not many shops do not put the diagnostic tool groups of scan tools, five-gas analyzers and scopes into the same thought process as far as tools to help techs diagnose and solve problems. Scan tool usage today has, of course, become as common place as reaching for a 10, 13 or 15 mm wrench. Scopes and five-gas analyzers on the other hand are not used as often as they perhaps should be. In speaking with several general, fix-anything-that-rolls-in-the-door repair shops, I was told that yes they will and do use a lab scope and/or five-gas analyzer but only when it’s a really complex problem and when their first line of defense, using a scan tool and going online to find listed similar problem issues don’t get to the point easily or quickly.

Perhaps more shops should dust off their old gas analyzer and acquire a more comfortable knowledge base with their lab scope. These shops may find that their in-depth diagnostics abilities will increase greatly, and they will become more proficient in solving those issues not fixed by a simple code retrieval.