I started working on mechanical things back when I was growing up in Pennsylvania in a small rural area of the countryside. I would find an old lawnmower, tear it apart and see what made it tick. My dad had a collection of old automotive manuals from the 30's thru the 50's that I would read from cover to cover. After a while a lot of it made sense to me. I wasn't old enough to drive, but I could look at a car and tell what was wrong, even though I never actually turned a bolt on a car. This stayed with me all the way into the years I spent in the USMC, as the years passed I found myself more and more interested into making automotive repair my career choice. I haven't regretted it one bit.
If you love what you do, it's not work.... it's fun. And, it sure has been for all these years.
Owning my own automotive repair shop for many years has opened my eyes to see people in a different light. Mostly the funny situations that people get themselves into, the wacky things people can say and do in regards to their cars.
There's never been a dull moment to say the least. I've met some great people and a few who have made me laugh.
This website is for the automotive enthusiast or anyone who just needs a good laugh at themselves and others around them. Opening up the conversations between repair shops and the customer is one of my goals. To many times the media portrays the auto repair shop as some sort of evil place, but I also think that every trade has their share of rip off artists and con-men... I'm here to help, the shop and the customer realize what it takes to do this job, And to do it with a few laughs along the way.
I opened my shop in the early 80's, I never wanted to get big. I wanted to do something to make a living that I could do with what resources I already had. Those resources were my mechanical/electrical abilities.
Back then, a wiring diagram was all I needed to trace a wiring problem in a car. As the years went by all that has changed. These days proper technical training, scanners, and a wiring diagram will get you through the maze of electrical systems.
After all those years in business I kept noticing that people (customers) tended to be very skeptical of anyone working on their car. Not knowing why was the biggest thing I found to be lacking in the education of a shop owner. That lead to writing a book about people, the same people we call customers. It's more of an education with laughter than it is a "how-to" book on how to deal with customers. You'll have to decide how to deal with your situation, however my stories may give you some direction on what to expect.
With the constant changes in cars and the technology advancing just as fast, there is one common factor that has never changed.... the customer.... They are still skeptical. Hopefully my true to life stories will help everyone in the business and the skeptical customer to understand that they are NOT the only ones experiencing these type of problems. It's world wide... I find it refreshing, and can feel the stress from the day to day grind diminish when I write some of my stories, I hope.... it does the same for you. We all could use a little less stress in our lives.
As a certified ASE Master Technician, I take a different view to automotive repair and diagnostics than the guy who is just out there fixing cars by changing parts or assumes he knows how a car works. I agree there are a lot of people out there that know how cars work or can repair them without any sort of certification, however, that should be left to the home garage and NOT for making a living at it. I certainly wouldn't go to my doctor if he wasn't "certified". Most states require plumbers, electricians, etc... to have at least a state licence. Only a few states require certification for your local mechanic. My advice... "Use a certified mechanic whenever possible." They are more apt to be up on today's technology than the local wrench head will.
If you find yourself a little down, ticked off at the world, a little tired of the rat race... don't worry.... you're not alone. Read a few of the stories and I'm sure it will cheer you up.
"Keep it between the ditches, and off the tow trucks!" Gonzo
As this automotive repair industry constantly changes so does the the technicians knowledge have to change. With these changes so does the cost of the repairs. From the outside cars still have windshields, paint, and tires... BUT.... what's going on under all that is something entirely different than even 10 years ago.
Something else you'll find here is some of the latest information and hopefully help bring the tech and the consumer onto somewhat of a level understanding about what it takes to make repairs on today's cars.