19 Jul 2018

Case Study – Automotive Solution

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For its customers to be successful, and to experience the true potential of the AE Tools solution, the company needed to partner with a technology provider that offered a powerful, flexible and durable laptop backed by a team that would work to meet its unique needs.


AE Tools reviewed all available options and selected Durabook Americas with its Durabook SA14 semi-rugged laptop to meet its requirements. Durabook Americas offered flexibility and a true partnership, and the SA14 proved to be the right tool the aftermarket service community was looking for.


AE Tools customers now have a device that is purpose-built to meet their industry needs, improve productivity and provide world-class service. For its part, AE Tools has a partner that has worked with them from a hardware perspective and helped create a custom support model, making AE Tools a reliable partner to their customers.


According to a survey by IHS Automotive, the average age of a car in the U.S. is 11.5 years old – a record-high. Consumers and corporations are keeping vehicles longer than ever before. This makes proper maintenance critical. And as vehicles age, service often shifts from the dealership to an aftermarket service provider.

Aftermarket service providers not only need to service aging vehicles, but the cars they are seeing are becoming technologically complex. Today’s mainstream cars may have up to 10 million lines of code, and some highly advanced vehicles have upwards of 100 engine control units (ECUs). The heavy-duty side of the market looks similar.

While vehicles become more technologically advanced, service centers are are falling behind in how they diagnose vehicles. These service centers not only need technicians who know their way around wrenches, grease, and engine blocks, but they must also know their way around computers and diagnostic software.

AE Tools recognized the need for an advanced computer solution as part of automotive technician’s toolkit. The company also knew they had to offer a solution tough enough to survive the service bay. After careful consideration, AE Tools selected Durabook SA14 semi-rugged laptop as the platform best suited for its diagnostic solution. Their decision was based on the device’s balance of performance, durability, functionality, and affordability. The customizable Durabook SA14 includes a native serial port and PCMCIA card slot that works with older diagnostic hardware, such as the Vetronix/Bosch MasterTech 3100 and Tech2, without the use of unreliable, and easily lost USB adaptors.

AE Tools can partition the SA14’s 1TB hard drive to hold 90% of auto make and model specific diagnostic and programming software packages, while running their own 64 bits OS. The system’s 16GB of memory makes multitasking a breeze. If a service center exceeds the 1TB storage space, the SA14 is engineered with a quick-release hard drive that makes swapping one drive for another a snap.

Durabook worked with AE Tools to provide the highest level of product support, and assure that software or hardware changes to their preferred device do not negatively impact the customer’s experience. From an engineering standpoint, Durabook has been able to quickly test and implement new solutions to meet the unique requirements of AE Tools customers.

“AE Tools has been able to build customized diagnostics computers that our customers can rely on to improve their business, in part, because Durabook can provide us with a purpose-built rugged computing platform that meets the market need for power, functionality, durability, and value. Durabook offers the same level of product quality and engineering capabilities as more recognized brands, but they are more nimble and flexible, which is a great advantage to any company focused on building strong relationships with its customers. AE Tools and Durabook is a great partnership,” said Joey Hendrich, co-owner, AE Tools & Computers.

“To a technician, a computer is a tool, just like a wrench. In the service bay, tools sometimes get dropped. Computers entering the service bay need to handle the drops, spills and other extremes that come with the job.”


About AE Tools
AE Tools & Computers of Olathe, Kansas provides aftermarket repair shops, heavy-duty repair facilities, and automotive locksmiths around the world with OEM-level diagnostic solutions and dealer-level support for on-car computer programming, immobilizer, and security related issues, along with scan tool maintenance and repair. To set their service apart, AE Tools provides lifetime support for all the solutions it sells