Changing Oil and Changing Times – The Independent Auto Repair Service Dilemma

Changing Oil and Changing Times – The Independent Auto Repair Service Dilemma

If you see fewer auto repair shops in your town then you are witnessing a trend that is spreading throughout the auto repair industry. The small independent auto repair shop is getting squeezed by both the dealers and the ‘backyarders’ creating shrinking margins and putting many auto repair independents out of business.

The global problem will be the auto repair and service market has been shrinking in the last ten or fifteen years. Technology has made cars much more reliable with fewer breakdowns, repairs and scheduled maintenances.

Many manufacturers offer kind 100,000 mile warranty so that you can the independent will get little chance to work on that car for their early 5-10 years it is owned.

As new car sales margins have gone down, VW, Chevrolet, Toyota and other manufacturers are in order to their service departments to make the difference.

Additionally many dealers such as Porsche and Saab already been adding other useful benefits such as the loaner car while repairs are being made. Independents are increasingly being forced to give courtesy rides to customers in a feat to keep on top of the dealers since customers now expect this service.

Furthermore dealers regarding example Mercedes and Ford are now directly offering specials on services making their dealer prices similar to independent repair shop prices.

But it’s not just competitive pricing naturally worrying the independents.

The battle for skilled labor is also being won from dealers: the dealers constantly competed for skilled labor and will have become significantly aggressive. With fewer folks entering the auto repair profession and opting instead for careers such as health and technology, overall talent pool of the most skilled auto technicians is shrinking.

Increasingly appeared becoming tougher for independents to work with and retain these highly skilled employees. As an automotive technician, would you rather improve Audi or Joe’s Shed?

The dealers are discovering the best ‘mechanics’ or as might known today, ‘technicians.’ A top end dealer technician may well make $100,000 yearly with benefits while an unbiased shop owner would to be able to gross within the $1,000,000 one year to make that and still have to obtain their own benefits and social equity.

Because of this economic realities many independent owners are now closing their shops and going to be employed by GM, Nissan and other dealers.

This puts the independent auto repair shop at a definite disadvantage when diagnosing and repairing difficult drivability, fuel injection, electronic and computer related injuries.

Additionally, is not diagnosis appeared and a part needs replacing the dealer will have it in stock, not only verifying the identification but greatly speeding up the repair time and increasing service delivery. Big advantage Cadillac and Bmw.

But it’s not just a skilled employee conflict. Techs cannot fix cars without information and love a long and ongoing dispute among the dealers/manufacturers and independents over technical information access and diagnostic solutions.

The manufacturers claim their technical facts are proprietary everybody is making independents claim the information should be around to anyone that owns or fixes help to make of car.

Excel Auto Repair & Sales

94 E Falmouth Hwy, East Falmouth, MA 02536

(508) 444-2777