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

If you see fewer auto repair shops in your community 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 along with the ‘backyarders’ creating shrinking margins and putting many auto repair independents out of economic.

The global problem may be the auto repair and service market has been shrinking in the last 10 or 15 years. Technology has made cars much more reliable with fewer breakdowns, repairs and scheduled maintenances.

Many manufacturers offer some sort of 100,000 mile warranty relating to this the independent will get little chance to work on that car for the first 5-10 years it is owned.

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

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

Furthermore dealers such as Mercedes and Ford are now directly offering specials on services making their dealer prices comparable to independent repair shop prices.

But it’s but not just competitive pricing is actually not worrying the independents.

The battle for skilled labor is also being won from dealers: the dealers constantly competed for skilled labor and may have become significantly more aggressive. With fewer individuals entering automobile repair profession and opting instead for careers with regard to health and technology, essential talent pool of methods to use skilled auto technicians is shrinking.

Increasingly appeared becoming harder for independents to utilize and retain these competent employees. A great automotive technician, would you rather work in Audi or Joe’s House?

The dealers are discovering the best ‘mechanics’ or as they are known today, ‘technicians.’ An excellent end dealer technician may well make $100,000 yearly with benefits while a private shop owner would require gross over a $1,000,000 one year to make that and get to afford their own benefits and social security.

Because of this economic realities many independent owners are at this moment closing their shops on and on to be suitable for GM, Nissan and other dealers.

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

Additionally, if a diagnosis appeared and a part needs replacing the dealer will achieve it in stock, not only verifying the verification but greatly speeding up the repair as well as increasing customer support. Big advantage Cadillac and Rolls royce.

But it’s not just a skilled employee struggle. Techs cannot fix cars without information and you will find a long and ongoing dispute between the dealers/manufacturers and independents over technical information access and diagnostic solutions.

The manufacturers claim their technical data is proprietary individuals independents claim the information should accumulate to anybody that owns or fixes build of automobile.

Excel Auto Repair & Sales

94 E Falmouth Hwy, East Falmouth, MA 02536

(508) 444-2777