Reducing cost and downtime through diagnostics

Knorr Bremse NEO Green

In a new partnership with Route One magazine, Imperial Engineering is producing a Maintenance Insight each month, to help fleet operators and workshop departments. In this first feature of 2019, Imperial takes a look at fault-finding tools.

Minimal downtime of your fleet is critical to business performance, so when it comes to servicing and maintenance, being able to diagnose faults quickly and accurately will ultimately save time and cost. Sophisticated electronic systems are now commonplace, including intelligent braking. For workshop technicians, therefore, diagnostics systems which identify faults and enable programming of replacement parts has become invaluable to operator profitability.

Ensuring that you have the right system(s) is equally critical, which is dependent on the vehicle type. As a major distributor for both Knorr Bremse and WABCO, Imperial Engineering is best placed to advise operators on compatibility in response to particular issues, so that the correct equipment is used. In some cases, operators may require multiple systems if they are running a mixed vehicle fleet.

One fault-finding tool which provides workshop technicians with the essential functions is the NEO Green modular diagnostics system.  Developed in-house by Knorr-Bremse, NEO Green is a laptop-based service tool operating on Windows 7 software and above. Technicians can interrogate the majority of ABS/EBS and ELC systems (Electronic Levelling Control) that are currently in service. Such faults can be complex but the functionality built into NEO Green enables straightforward diagnosis and repair. Technicians can then clear the error code memory and check that the braking system is fully operational before the vehicle is returned to service. The inclusion of wiring diagrams and practical hints to possible problems, as well as recommended rectification procedures provide additional user-friendly benefits.

Available from Imperial Engineering (part number K019470N00) the NEO Green Starter Kit contains the basic equipment. The only additional items required are the software and system cables and adapters to enable access to the relevant OBD port (On Board Diagnostic), which are also available from Imperial Engineering.

Another leading system is WABCO’s Systems Diagnostics (SD), which is also Windows-based. Developed in response to an increasing range of sophisticated electronic safety features, Wabco’s SD software facilitates diagnosis of every WABCO component and works in much the same way as NEO Green. Also available from Imperial Engineering, WABCO offers a bespoke Bus Diagnostic Case (4006069320) which contains the diagnostic hardware relevant to the UK bus market. The software is available to download directly from the WABCO website, under licence for 12 months (Ref:246 301 902 0)

As technology advances further, diagnostics will play a vital role in not only fast fault detection and fix but also pre-emptive vehicle health checks, so that operators can focus more on preventative maintenance to minimise downtime.

Please contact us to discuss any diagnostics requirements.