The Modern Glovebox Pt. 2: Digital Maintenance Records

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InSaNeAuDiOSupport5
Posts: 107
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2017 11:59 am

The Modern Glovebox Pt. 2: Digital Maintenance Records

Post by InSaNeAuDiOSupport5 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 9:44 am

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Now that you have the owner’s manual for your vehicle in your dash, on your Insane Audio unit, it’s time to take a look at how to get the rest of that valuable information out of your glovebox and into a digital, easy to manage and reference format. Yes, we’re talking about that pile of oil change receipts and the entirety of your vehicle’s maintenance records that are neatly tucked (or smashed) into your glovebox. Some of the fuel focused apps covered in our Fuelin’ Up writeup (viewtopic.php?f=7&t=4314) offer the ability to track maintenance records, so we’ve included one of these, but we’ll also look at a few new apps here that are more focused on managing maintenance records.


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Free Car Maintenance myCARFAX (free)
This vehicle maintenance app taps into CARFAX's exclusive service data to automatically display your service history and give you alerts for scheduled maintenance items such as oil changes, wheel alignments, tires and brake service. It’s pretty amazing really, just enter your license plate number or VIN and voila! any service records in the extensive CARFAX database are automatically displayed in your vehicle history.


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Unfortunately, not all auto shops use this database (we’re looking at you 4 Wheel Parts.) Of course, you can also manually add service item from these shops or your own DIY maintenance items. You can also get alerts for items like renewing your registration and insurance. And what do you know, it looks like one of our test vehicle’s registration is expired. This app provides a link to renew it on the DMV website or I could download the CA DMV app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... v&hl=en_US), to the Insane Audio DD2001 in the Subie and renew it that way. So many options with Insane Audio, but I digress.


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With a Google Play Store overall rating of 4.5 stars and over 2,500 five-star reviews, it’s safe to say people love the myCARFAX app. This app lets you track repair and service history for up to 5 vehicles and view the recommended maintenance schedule for your specific vehicle(s).


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This featured app will also alert you of safety recalls, (uh oh, it looks like our TJ here at the shop has a recall for the clutch interlock switch.)


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Use this app to find local auto repair shops, and even avoid sticker shock by getting repair cost estimates with parts and labor breakdowns based on your location.


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The easy-to-use interface, automatic population of your vehicle service records and repair cost estimates make this app our top pick in the category. Plus, they actually include a folder called “Glovebox” that contains your vehicle information and app settings, well done CARFAX!


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Car, Motorcycle, or Fleet Maintenance & Gas Log AKA AUTOsist (free)
Like most of these maintenance record apps, AUTOsist wants to help you prolong the life of your car, truck, motorcycle, boat, plane, RV, ATV, equipment or any type of vehicle by keeping detailed records of things like oil changes, tire rotations, brake jobs, and other maintenance tasks and by allowing you to set reminders for these items by date and/or mileage.


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Another value proposition of the app is that by doing all this you will improve the resale value of your vehicle by showing potential buyers a report of your maintenance and service history. If and when you sell the vehicle you can simply transfer all this information to the buyer through the app. While the free version offers a clean interface and all the features listed above, it only allows you to manage one vehicle.
The pro version is a bit spendy for an app at $19.99 (one time) but will allow you to manage up to 5 vehicles. The Gold version ($49.99/year) allows syncing of more devices, unlimited photos, web portal access, and offline access. If you are truly managing a large fleet of vehicles, check out AUTOsist “Fleet” for unlimited vehicles and enterprise level features.


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Car Service and Fuel Records AKA Vehi Care (free)
This app is not the prettiest in the bunch but they do offer the standard maintenance management features, so we thought it was worth including here. In addition to the standard fuel cost/mileage logging, you can also use this app to get time and mileage-based reminders for things like vehicle service and insurance payments.


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This app also supports recording replaced vehicle parts like tires, battery, brakes, etc. To keep your data safe, you can use the backup and restore feature, which allows you to export a CSV file of your vehicle service records. Have more than one vehicle, no problem, with this app you can add and track an unlimited number of vehicles and view a complete history for each of them. For $1.49, the pro version of this app removes ads and unlocks more specific service reminders.


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Simply Auto: Car Maintenance & Mileage tracker app (free)
This app aims to help you keep your vehicle’s expenses in check by tracking expenses, improve your vehicle’s life with timely services and maintenance reminders, and let you share data with other drivers and across devices by signing into the could for instant backups.


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All the essential functionality is available in the free version, specifically, recording maintenance and service and creating reminders for scheduled maintenance. The “Gold” version ($4.99 one time) of this app removes ads and adds some extra cloud features like, accessing your data online at www.simplyautoapp.com and instantly back up receipts to the cloud, and backup receipts to Google Drive. The “Platinum” version ($9.99/year) provides all the above functionality plus the ability to add unlimited vehicles, more targeted toward fleet management. There is also a “Stats and Charts” section that takes all of your info and displays it in easily consumable formats. And of course, you can name and add a photo of your vehicle(s).


Google Docs
Another lightweight option to consider for maintenance record management and service reminders is Google Docs + Google Calendar. You can easily enter your maintenance records into a Google Doc or spreadsheet and create services reminders in Google calendar. Your maintenance records can then be viewed on your IA head unit through the Google Docs app and you will automatically receive reminders for your Google Calendar items when you are logged into your Google account. This is the Insane Audio way, complete freedom, flexibility and customizability. Let us know if you’ve tried any of these apps, what features you like and don’t like and your current strategy for maintenance record and service reminders. Thanks for stopping by, we’ll see you out on the trail!

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