Innovative Lab Educates Industry on ADAS Repairs
May 8, 2020— At its start, Hansen VTF Labs was started in 2003 by Chuck Hansen and David Hansen Sr., to test automotive aftermarket replacement parts.
Since then, its added ADAS calibration diagnostic repair services as of 2018 to help educate the industry of the importance of these systems and how it affects safety, says Kevin Yen, general manager for Hansen VTF Labs. Mainly, the lab is focused on how aftermarket parts do affect these ADAS features and sensors on the vehicle.
As the services evolved, Yen says the shop started partnering with body shops in the area and now works with about 20 collision repair facilities. The lab is a third-party independent testing company.
Sensor calibration for vehicles has become very important today. Say a car is an accident and nothing on the exterior of the vehicle was damaged or appears significantly damaged. Well, that car could have a sensor located on a grille, or behind a grille or bumper that could have shifted even millimeters during the crash. If the car isn't repaired properly, it can affect the safety of the passengers.
"While a lot of OEM repair procedures highly recommend or require these sensors to be calibrated but we're kind of noticing a lot of these body shops need to be still educated on these systems and calibrations," Yen says. "Not performing the calibrations on the systems can still mean the system might work but there is the small chance it may or may not register correctly or in time."
Yen breaks down how the shop performs calibrations and tests on these cars.
Hansen VTF Labs performs static calibrations in which the car is stationary the entire time. After the calibration is performed on the car, one of the five team members will take the car for a test drive. The amount of space needed to perform the calibrations depends on the vehicle, he says. Typically, the vehicle needs about 10 meters of space free in front of the vehicle and two meters of space free on either side of the car. There needs to be about 4 meters of height space free above the car as well.
To perform the ADAS calibration tests, the facility invested more than $20,000, he says.
Today, the facility often sees Asian car models like Toyota, Honda and Mazda, coming into the space in need of the calibrations. 2017 model year cars are more likely to have the sensors, he says.