September 2014

This is the full-text, online version of the NASTF Newsletter.





A new SAE J2534-1 v 05.00 specification to be published by SAE very soon attempts to improve reliability of devices across different vehicle makes and to reduce the time necessary to program vehicle modules. Greg Potter, Director at DG Technologies, is a member of the SAE J-2534 Committee and explains, "The SAE J2534-1 Committee has been relentless in its effort to take all ambiguity out of the specification and allow the completion of the SAE J2534-3 Compliance Tests. The new spec also allows ISO 15765 CAN to have multiple 'Logical' channels and adds support for full and half-duplex functionality that can facilitate much faster reprogramming times."

The new specification tightens the instructions and definitions so that OEM application software and J-device hardware are less likely to have compatibility issues that can lead to programming errors.

But don't expect the upgrades to appear in the shop anytime soon. The new specification is not backward compatible, J-devices will need to have software/firmware updates and OEM applications will need to be edited or rewritten to comply with the new 05.00 version of SAE J2534-1. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) does not appear to be in a hurry to "require" OEMs implement this new spec as they wait for the industry, it seems, to apply urgency to implementing this version. Some OEMs may voluntarily write new application software, but considering the expense and pending upgrades due for all model-year 2018 vehicles the OEMs may be slow in the rollout.


NASTF FALL 2014 General Meeting
1-4pm PT, Wednesday, Nov 5
Sands Expo/Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas

Two featured sessions are set to open the NASTF Fall 2014 General Meeting, 1-4pm PT, Wednesday November 5 at the Sands Expo/Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas during the AAPEX/SEMA trade shows.

Aftermarket Access to OEM Education Resources (A panel discussion with Jill Saunders (pictured top right), Techstream engineer for Toyota, Bill Moss (pictured right), Owner of Euro Service Automotive and Rob Morrell (pictured right), Training Manager for WORLDPAC. NASTF Executive Director, Skip Potter is the discussion moderator) - Panelists will discuss key issues concerning OEM education resources, including the legal requirements on automakers, why automakers may want to provide training voluntarily, the difference between OEM dealer training and what the aftermarket may need, navigating OEM websites to find training, OEM licensing of resources to independent trainers and more.

National MOU – What does it mean for servicing 2018MY vehicles? (A presentation by Steve Douglas (pictured bottom right), Senior Director, Environmental Affairs for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers) - In addition to service information, the 2013 MA Right to Repair law and the National MOU require 2018 model year and later vehicles to support diagnostics and reprogramming using an off-the-shelf PC and an SAE J2534 (or ISO 22900) device.  How will this change the tools you buy and the repairs you make?  What vehicles already meet the requirement?  What tool companies provide SAE J2534 devices?  Will this eliminate the need for OEM specific tools, or just allow you to repair a larger number of vehicle makes?

The complete agenda and additional information about the NASTF Fall 2014 General Meeting can be found on the NASTF website at

SAVE THE DATE: NASTF is finalizing plans with AASP-NJ to hold the NASTF Spring 2015 General Meeting on the afternoon of Thursday, March 19, 2015 in the New York City metro area alongside their Northeast 2015 conference and tradeshow.




BMW has developed an application allowing independent certified California Locksmith’s (Calif only) the ability to provide keys to the end customer. This application allows the California Locksmith the ability to order, code and cut a blank key.
  • The application has been deployed to production (
  • As part of the process, BMW of North America, LLC, has developed a Key Writer device for the locksmith to code a key.
  • All application testing has been performed and interfaces between BMW and the NASTF VSP Registry (SDRM) have been verified.
FORD - The Ford technical service website no longer lists the TSB or SSM associated with the module update. NASTF learned from Ford that engineers stopped associating programming file updates with specific TSBs and SSMs in approximately 2008. Engineers determined at that time that the website reference was a duplication of the intended information and could be misleading as the TSB referenced in the index could be superseded over time with no reliable process to catch the error. The duplication of the information existed in the actual programming routines of both IDS and FMP.  When investigating SIR#549 in 2013 Ford realized they had not completely cleaned out all the old references (a 2003 vehicle was the subject of the SIR). Subsequently, those references were deleted on both IDS and FMP websites. Ford recommends using OASIS with Symptom Codes or DTCs because OASIS is always be up-to-date and will only show the correct articles for the symptom.
FORD subscription refunds are sometimes necessary, usually caused when the locksmith/technician is not using MS Internet Explorer with Compatibility Mode enabled for To apply for a refund, Ford provides the following instruction: Click on ‘Contact Us’ at the bottom of the page then select ‘Request for Other Help' and complete the online form. Ford attempts a response time within 24 hours.

HONDA/ACURA - Finding the free reflash files on the Honda/Acura technical website just got easier with a navigation change that makes J2534 programming just two clicks away. (Click picture for larger image.)

HYUNDAI announced earlier this year that reflash downloads for J2534 programming are $75. However, each comes with two attempts in case there is an issue with a pop-up-blocker, etc.

Also from Hyundai - A Knowledge "Feedback” icon is available that serves for direct communication between the automaker website support and the independent. The feature is available once logged into an account with at least the minimum subscription on

SPRINTER keys and security code access - Key codes & security PINs are available for the Dodge Sprinter from the Fiat/Chrysler technical website, To find the Sprinter models in the vehicle list, select the Dodge brand. Key/security codes for the Mercedes Sprinter are not available to independents, although service information for 2010 and newer MB Sprinters is available at NASTF awaits further instructions from Mercedes, but as of this publication date had not received the requested information.

SUZUKI does not Validate J-2534 devices but does offer their vehicles to device manufacturers to test their devices. At least three companies have conducted those tests: Snap-on, SPX and Drew Tech. Suzuki recommends contacting your device manufacturer for specific compatibility.

Software and subscriptions to perform J-2535 pass thru programming depends on the vehicle to be programmed. Most Suzuki vehicles use the SEPS Suzuki ECU Programming System software subscription, except the 07-09 XL7 which used Tis2Web and the Equator which is not reprogrammable. The SEPS software subscription is $300 per year, and the Tis2Web subscription offers 24 hour access for $35.

A pdf document of SEPS instructions is posted in the NASTF Reprogramming Information - Suzuki section.

VOLVO - In response to NASTF-SIR#596, Volvo clarified what is required to reprogram their vehicles, reporting: "Volvo does not test or verify aftermarket scan tools and VIDA is needed to diagnose and repair Volvo vehicles including downloading software. A J2534 interface is needed to connect the vehicle to the PC. Volvo vehicles are J2534 compliant, and today an off-the-shelf PC, a VIDA subscription and a J2534 interface is all that is needed to diagnose and repair Volvo vehicles. VIDA 2015, scheduled for release in early 2015, will eliminate the need to obtain a physical VIDA DVD as VIDA will then be 100% web based."



Keys & Security Programming for Vehicles in the lots of auto repossessors or sold by auctions and used car dealers still require compliance with the NASTF positive I.D. policy when using the NASTF VSP Registry. Here's how: Verify ownership/title papers, and positively I.D. the individual requesting the service as you would in any other transaction. Be completely sure the vehicle transfer/auction paperwork matches the VIN and the individual requesting the service has the authority to do so; and that no possibility of a crime exists. Fill out the Positive ID (D-1) form completely and enter the dealer or auction stock number in the appropriate place on the form. Once that is accomplished enter dealer or auction in any screen asking for tag, plate or owner's I.D.

Says David Lowell, Registry Operations Director for NASTF, "They don’t have to, but I recommend VSPs attach [to their D-1 form] copies of any documentation that will establish a paper trail of authorization.



Communications Committee - If you would like to join the Communications Committee, email Be sure to visit the NASTF Communications Committee page at

The next conference call for the Communications Committee is set for Wednesday, September 10, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

Service Information Committee - The SIC held their quarterly meeting on July 16 with Steve Douglas of the Automaker Alliance and Dave Zwalina, owner of Automotive One presiding as committee Co-chairs. Discussion continues as the SIC attempts to replace the Service Information Matrix and the Reprogramming Matrix with a more useful NASTF website product. Minutes of the meeting are available on the SIC webpage.

View SIC information from the NASTF SIC page at If you would like to join the Service Information Committee, email

Techs having trouble completing jobs because of access to OEM service information and tools continue to post their questions on NASTF's Service Information Request (SIR) on-line response system. To log or file a NASTF SIR, visit Review recent SIRs by visiting

The next conference call for the SIC is set for Wednesday, September 24, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

Education Committee - Minutes of the August 6, 2014 Education Committee meeting are available to read from the Education Committee's webpage. Co-Chairs, Rob Barto of Nissan and Rob Morrell of WORLDPAC led a discussion to launch the Committee's initiative to understand the aftermarket's use and the automaker's presentation of OEM education resources.

Visit the NASTF Education Committee page at Anyone wanting to join the Education Committee should send their request to

The next conference call for the Education Committee is set for Wednesday, October 8, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

Collision Repair Committee - The CRC met by conference call on July 23 with Independent Co-chair, Tim Morgan of Spanesi presiding. Jason Bartanen of I-CAR previewed the Repairability Technical Support website which is now available as a free resource to all industry collision technicians. The CRC learned that the NASTF Spring 2015 General Meeting will be held on March 19 in cooperation with the AASP-NJ Northeast2015 event. Given the collision focus of that event, the CRC suggested the NASTF meeting feature a special session addressing the unique driveability diagnostic needs of the collision technician. Minutes of the meeting are available on the CRC webpage.


View information about CRC on the NASTF Collision Repair Committee page at Anyone wanting to join the CRC should send their request to

The next conference call for the CRC is set for Wednesday, October 22, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

Vehicle Security Committee - The VSC met for their quarterly conference call on August 13 with Bob Stewart of GM and Claude Hensley, owner of Lockman Locksmiths presiding as Co-chairs. David Lowell, NASTF Director of VSP Registry Operations reported an explosive growth rate of 30% for the Registry year-to-date through July 2014. This is double the gradual growth of the Registry experience in recent years. Additionally, the CRC discussed increased audits of Registry transactions and accelerated notice from the National Insurance Crime Bureau on vehicle theft investigations which may implicate a NASTF VSP. Minutes of the meeting are posted on the VSC webpage.
Visit the NASTF VSC page at If you would like to join the VSC, email The next conference call for the VSC is set for Wednesday, November 12, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

Equipment & Tool Committee - The ETC met on their quarterly conference call on August 27 and the minutes of that meeting are available to read on the ETC webpage. Kurt Immekus of VW was welcomed as the new OEM Co-chair to replace Dennis Blough who is on medical leave from Suzuki. Blough, however remains on the committee and attended this meeting. Greg Potter of DG Technologies and Independent Co-chair on the ETC presented, with Charlie Gorman, Executive Manager of ETI, the design document of ETI's Scan Tool Information Request (STIR), an online collaboration project to facilitate tool-maker/OEM technical issues. In this meeting the ETC also identified a project to facilitate implementation of the newly released SAE J2534-1 standard, version 05.00.

Visit the NASTF ETC page at Anyone wanting to join the ETC should send their request to

The next conference call for the ETC is set for Wednesday, November 19, 2014. An email invitation with web and dial-in information will be sent to Committee members of record at least 5 days in advance.

An Editorial by Skip Potter, NASTF Executive Director

I was pleasantly surprised and genuinely impressed with my recent visit to Detroit.

Like most of you, I had read the sad stories of the old Motor City’s crumbling infrastructure, corrupt government and declining population. My last visit to Detroit about 10 years ago had not made me optimistic about this visit in July 2014. The Automotive Service Association (ASA) had boldly scheduled their annual NACE/CARS convention and trade show, not only in the dead of summer but in Detroit, of all places, some had wondered.

But from my arrival at DTW through the taxi ride, hotels, restaurants and walks in the downtown, the feel of a Detroit recovery was obvious. It seemed that those great people who remain in that suspect southeast region of Michigan had all attended a seminar on positive attitude and customer service. “Welcome to the Motor City,” was the cheerful greeting by the airport shuttle driver. “We have a long way to go but you are contributing to our economic recovery,” he explained.

 “Thank you for visiting my city,” said a clerk in the Marriott Downtown.

What makes this story relevant to NASTF is this: NASTF was created 15 years ago in a project of common interest between automakers and the aftermarket’s service technician. When ASA’s new President, Dan Risley and his brave Board of Directors inked a deal to take their aftermarket event to Detroit, it appeared to be another example of cooperative support of one another, the aftermarket side-by-side with the local automakers to bring back America’s famous Motor City.

I am happy to have been a part of this.



Bill Moss, owner of EuroService Automotive (Warrenton, VA) and past-Mechanical Division Director for the Automotive Service Association (ASA), received ASA's 2015 Alpha Award, August 1, 2014 in Dearborn, MI for his "generous and far-reaching contributions" to the industry. One such contribution is Moss' volunteer service as a current member of the NASTF Board of Directors.


WHERE WE WERE - NASTF Executive Director, Skip Potter had a busy week in Southeast Michigan at the end of July and into early August. "I was signed up to exhibit at the NACE/CARS event in downtown Detroit so, of course, I wanted to visit the local offices of automaker volunteers who have given so much to NASTF in the past 15 years.


At Ford in Dearborn with John Trajnowski (pictured, above left) and Tony Farr.

At VW/Audi in Auburn Hills with Kurt Immekus (pictured, above center), Kevin Norton, Travis Cagle and Ron Harris.

At GM in Grand Blanc with Bob Stewart (pictured, above right), Manager of Aftermarket Service Support.


NASTF@Greater Phila. Locksmith Assoc. Convention, Hilton Phila. Airport - Sept 10-13, 2014 (Exhibiting)

NASTF@AAPEX/SEMA, Las Vegas, NV - Wednesday, Nov 5, 2014, 1-4pm PT (Fall General Meeting)

NASTF@MACS, Orlando, FL - February 5-7, 2015 (Exhibiting)

NASTF@AASP-NJ Northeast, Secaucus, NJ (New York City Metro) - Thursday, March 19, 2015, 1-4pm ET (Spring General Mtg)

NASTF@AutoMechanika Chicago - April 25 & 26 (2 NASTF presentation sessions)



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