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Posted to Emissions Forum on 6/12/2012 4 Replies


Thanks for the positive comment/pep talk.

I invite you to browse my short-term measure history. Go back all the way to last year. I don't believe that I can be any more careful about the cars I inspect or the data I enter, without simply starting to pre-screen and reject more vehicles that don't shift properly or possess maximum OBD readiness issues. I'm not my own boss, so the rejection method can only be taken so far...

In my opinion, customers can be divided into two conceptual groups: those that want their cars fixed, and those that want their cars certified. Certification for the first group is merely an afterthought.

A service writer can usually determine which group a customer falls into almost immediately, and take appropriate action. I'm not a service writer, I'm a technician, who does what he is told to do to the very best of his ability. I have been told by those who know me personally that I am quite able, so this is not just some conceited opinion.

This leads me to FPR. I don't believe that any logical person can legitimately ignore the significance of the "certify" group on the vehicle's future inspection performances. The FPR attempts to do exactly that, and FAILS.

It is too late for my shop to change it's customer intake philosophy, and it is nearly impossible for me to improve my inspection accuracy (in my opinion, it's already semi-good). The "certify" group HUGELY outnumbers the "repair" group in my neighborhood, so rejecting them is suicidal, and attempting to convert them is beyond my abilities.

But, you know what? It shouldn't have to be my responsibility! The FPR claims to simply grade an inspector's INSPECTION performance! IT DOESN'T!! Inspection performance is directly related to his knowledge and accuracy. Not his repair performance, not his customer demographic, not his lousy attitude. This is completely illogical and ignorant, and I don't have the slightest problem saying so!

So, if the FPR isn't fixed soon, either through internal enlightenment or external pressure, I won't be doing this much longer. Some will say "Good bye, Good riddance!!" I just hope that you're ready for the flood of "certify" customers headed your way. They can be both annoying and entertaining, and they are like "Bebe's Kids" -- they don't die, they just multiply!!


Michael Barry
Quick Stop Smog & More
Sacramento, California, USA

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