Precision Diagnostics

Autel Success Stories

  • Diagnostics and ADAS Collision Subletter
  • Founded in 2019, Headquartered in Wisconsin
  • Servicing 1,500 collision shops in 11 Midwestern states
  • Three Facilities: perform 60 calibrations monthly, per facility
  • Mobile Solution: 100 vans with technicians performing 4,500 calibrations monthly
Precision Diagnostics

Precision Diagnostics owners Dave Zielke and Tom McGuire at one of their three calibration centers.

Autel is the flagship brand in ADAS calibration equipment. The MA600 allows for highly efficient mobile calibrations of front facing cameras and lane departure warning (LDW) systems on virtually any OE platform.”
– Precision Diagnostics

Precision Diagnostics CalibrationsAs with many successful businesses, Precision Diagnostics, a collision subletter headquartered in Wisconsin and servicing 1,500 shops across 11 Midwestern states, owes its success and dynamic growth to a mix of vision and hard work. But it may be how its owners, Tom McGuire and Dave Zielke, reacted to the challenges of the COVID lockdown that enabled it to develop into an industry leader.

With his partner, McGuire founded Precision Diagnostics in 2019 after seeing both a need and an opportunity while working as a Multiple Shop Operator (MSO) for a collision chain in 2017 and using local dealerships for ADAS calibrations. “We were seeing an increasing number of delays from a cycle time perspective, getting cars back from the dealerships, and there was probably one mobile vendor in the space then. And frankly, the service levels just were not there; they weren’t realistic with what I needed as a body shop. And we really had a vision that if there was a company that focused on the collision side as a partner, and if we did it and we did it well, there was an opportunity,” McGuire said.

They opened their first facility in Madison and started to build their sublet business by drawing on a network of body shops acquired through 30-plus years of working in the industry and canvassing new local glass and body shops.

The goal,” McGuire said, “was to be an extension of the Body Shop’s production team—that’s what I would have wanted when running shops. Hundreds of different things are pulling on them —the insurance companies, the customer, and the OEM specifications—all those pieces. [They] want somebody that can come in and look at it and say this isn’t a problem at all, here’s what we need to do, here’s the OE information on it, here’s the process,” McGuire said.

Precision Diagnostics Front CamWe started with one van and a relatively small shop, McGuire said. Familiar with the Autel tablets and appreciative of “the overall comprehensiveness of the unit, McGuire chose Autel as an ADAS tooling partner, and purchased the Autel Standard (Big Red) frame for the shop and a MaxiSYS MA600 portable calibration system for the van.

In just a few months, Zielke and McGuire saw the volume to justify expanding their services to greater Milwaukee and decided to purchase a new facility there. Then came COVID. The day Precision opened its second facility, the state went on lockdown, taking 80 percent of its drivers off the road. “We had just opened a 10,000-square-foot facility with a half dozen employees, and we don’t have any cars to fix,” McGuire remembered.

But instead of laying off his staff, shutting the doors, and going home, McGuire and Zielke were determined to use the time to develop and refine their calibration process and workflow.

ADAS, as a sublet opportunity, was relatively new at that point, and I think it still is to some degree. There was just a ton of unknowns. And COVID slowed things down in the industry. It caused us to have to really troubleshoot and figure some things out. The first six months of COVID had the heaviest impact on us, but we kept everybody employed and paid, and we just continued to hone the craft and develop ourselves as a company. So, by the time things did start to ramp up, we weren’t fumbling through it; We were ready to go,” McGuire said.

Precision Diagnostics CalibrationsToday, the silver lining that McGuire and Zielke hoped for when they decided to work through COVID is a tangible reality.

Last November, it added three new markets. Michigan, Indiana, and Kansas City, to its previous eight. It operates a fleet of 100 mobile vans servicing 1,500, mainly collision repair shops and some mechanical and glass shops. Precision’s three brick-and-mortar facilities number about 60 monthly calibrations per site, while his mobile units perform about 4,500 ADAS calibrations combined per month.

Autel has been Precision’s ADAS calibration choice all along the way. McGuire said that although he has a few other toolsets to satisfy OE requirements and certifications, there is no doubt that Autel is Precision Diagnostics’ go-to ADAS solution.

In addition to the 100 MA600s (one in every van), Precision has nine Autel systems, a mix of standard, IA800, and IA900WA frames. When asked why Autel, when there are so many calibration solutions to choose from, McGuire offered, “[Autel] has provided the most comprehensive reach for us and gave us the most options. And the tooling has really proven to be top-flight in terms of its capabilities. As products evolve, and new offerings have come out through Autel, I have consistently seen the quality and durability of the products and the ability to really scale.”

And success through scale is something Precision Diagnostics seems to know something about.

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