Where There's Smoke ...

Redline Detection recently unveiled their new mineral oil-powered smoke machine that eliminates the need for annual fluid changes. Redline states that this allows the Total-Tech? to operate at less than 1 cent per test in performing both EVAP and general leak detection services.

According to Redline, their Total-Tech also offers:

  • A Smoke (Flow) Control Valve that provides greater versatility in pinpointing leaks.
  • A built-in pressure gauge and flowmeter that allows for visually detecting leakage rates.
  • A very sensitive flowmeter that provides pass/fail testing of the EVAP system in minutes.
  • A compact design for hanging under the hood or chassis during testing.
  • Each Smoke Pro? comes with an exhaust cone adaptor, 16-piece cap plug set, handheld halogen lamp, EVAP service port adaptor, a Schrader valve removal tool, and an 8-ounce bottle of mineral oil.
  • The unit measures 12? high and weighs just over 7 pounds. It runs on 12 volts DC with a flow rate of up to 20 liters/minute.
  • The made-in-the-U.S.A. unit is machined from aerospace aluminum and warranted for 1 year.

    To see how it would hold up under the rigors of shop use, we gave the Total-Tech to each of our Innovation Award Panelists. Here's what these ASE-certified Master Techs thought of the new unit.

    The Review

    Basically, the panelists all agreed on the following:

  • At under $1,000, the price is very appealing.
  • All the panelists also liked the compact design and ability to hang the unit out of the way. Dan Walker's crew at Dan's Auto Center in Oakhurst, CA affectionately nicknamed it "the lantern".
  • The fact that this unit runs on baby oil was also cited as a major benefit in keeping operating and maintenance costs lower than other smoke machines.
  • When it came to general leak detection, all the panelists agreed that the Total-Tech's ability to pinpoint leaks in various locations (trunk, dashboard, engine compartments, exhaust) was very impressive.
  • Over half of those receiving the unit planned on buying it.

    "This will be a real time-saver for us," cited Rick LaChance, owner of North Eugene Automotive in Eugene, OR. "We ran a test looking for oil leaks, and found one in the crankshaft instead of the camshaft, which is where these types of leaks are usually found. We didn't have to tear anything down or risk removing a good part to fix the vehicle," he stated.

    Some voiced initial concerns when it came to the air pressure at which the tool operates, as well as the tool's sensitivity in conducting EVAP tests. Joe Marconi, owner of Osceola Garage in Baldwin Place, NY, however, offered these comments. "Some additional benefits of this Redline machine include the fact that it does not require nitrogen when performing EVAP testing. It also comes with a flow meter and is the only smoke machine, to my knowledge, that comes with a gauge to monitor pressure within the system, which is vital when testing EVAP systems. This pressure gauge ensures accurate readings and makes testing valid. If you're looking for an EVAP smoke tool, I highly recommend this one."

    Redline officials also offered the following. "The Smoke-Pro is regulated at a fixed pressure of 12"-14" of water. This is just under 1/2 PSI, the approved pressure for all EVAP systems. Opening the Flow Control Valve does not increases output pressure, this is simply the back pressure in the supply line, and it is always below the maximum output pressure."

    For more information on Redline's Smoke Pro Total-Tech EVAP Smoke Machine: click ?e-inquiry? at www.pten.com.

    The company is also looking to align themselves with mobile tool dealers in bringing their products to market.

  • Loading