Built-in efficiency leads to greater productivity

This article was originally published HERE

The Diehl Collision Center in Pittsburgh is a model of efficiency.

Designed by a consultant from Axalta Coating Systems with input from the collision center’s director, the 26,000-square-foot space includes 20 repair bays, four paint booths and an array of profitability-enhancing equipment.

“Too much time can be lost without proper design to maximize workflow,” said Corina Diehl, owner of Diehl Automotive Group. “When vehicles move through a shop with minimal restrictions, customers get their cars back sooner and the department is more profitable.

“Most collision centers aren’t laid out like this one because as they grow over the years, additions make it difficult to maintain the original ‘greenfield’ workflow,” she explained. “In this center, once a [repair plan] is completed and parts are procured, vehicles don’t leave the building after repairs begin.”

Vehicles begin their journey in a wash bay, then move to one of four disassembly bays where technicians develop repair plans. Vehicles then enter a collision-repair area, before moving on to drive-thru booths for priming, prepping and painting, she said.

From there, vehicles travel to a cool-down area for additional detailing and buffing. The circle is completed as vehicles proceed to one of four assembly bays, Diehl said.

“The part of the building that stands out to me is the four-bay indoor estimating area, which is convenient for both our guests and team members for write-ups and vehicle delivery,” she said. “A covered staging area is very convenient for holding disassembled vehicles while waiting on parts or customer approvals.”

The center’s equipment includes asTech pre- and post-repair scanning machines, a Tru-Point alignment/calibration setup from John Bean, a CCC One estimating and management system from CCC Intelligent Solutions and a Polyvance nitrogen welding machine.

There are also several Car-O-Liner machines, including a Car-O-Tronic Vision2 measuring system, a CTR 9 spot welder and a BenchRack 6300 frame- alignment system with two pulling towers and a truck-anchoring system.