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I laughed so hard at your comment Joe... I had to brace myself in my chair. You got out the article the same thing I did. Not only with this new found information make the uneducated driver seem like he just recieved a ray of brillance he/she is going to use this as thier weapon of choice when they go to a repair shop.... How about this instead.... give some credit to the GOOD shops and QUIT going to those hole in the wall-never learned a dam thing repair shops.

You know you don't need to be ASE certified to be a GOOD shop, and YES I might have greasy paws.... BUT, I'm for having a sheep skin like any other trade of service. Maybe if shops had to be rated or had some form of established trade practice this crap wouldn't happen. (read my book, it's in there)

I think thats why I try to find the funny in the all my repair situations.... I gotta laugh at them, I think they can be very entertaining, even though "they" don't get the punch line.

Oh, and BTW... the second car that passes this "Tim Stevens" on that lonely stretch of road is going to be none other than me.... Laughin my A$$ off the whole time...




I am really tired of the disrespect we get from the media. To call us "mechanics with greasy paws", is truly an insult. Are we animals? Why are portrayed like this. I have fought my entire career to change our image. Talk about racism and stereotyping!!!


Here is my response I posted on that site:


"Hey, Tim Stevens, I'm one of those greasy mechanics that you are referring too. To think that an $89.95 devise can take the place of someone like me is a joke. Pulling error messages from the OBDII computer is of no help without knowing how to interpret the data and analyze the computer system. But, that's ok; I hope I see you stuck on the side of the road on a cold rainy night, with a check engine light problem. You won't need me, because you have the Griffin Car Trip, right? Good luck with that, because I will drive right past you!"

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  • Have you checked out Joe's Latest Blog?

      Auto shop owners are always looking for ways to improve production levels. They focus their attention on their technicians and require certain expectations of performance in billable labor hours. While technicians must know what is expected of them, they have a limited amount of control over production levels. When all factors are considered, the only thing a well-trained technician has control over is his or her actual efficiency.
      As a review, technician efficiency is the amount of labor time it takes a technician to complete a job compared to the labor time being billed to the customer. Productivity is the time the technician is billing labor hours compared to the time the technician is physically at the shop. The reality is that a technician can be very efficient, but not productive if the technician has a lot of downtime waiting for parts, waiting too long between jobs, or poor workflow systems.
      But let’s go deeper into what affects production in the typical auto repair shop. As a business coach, one of the biggest reasons for low shop production is not charging the correct labor time. Labor for extensive jobs is often not being billed accurately. Rust, seized bolts, and wrong published labor times are just a few reasons for lost labor dollars.
      Another common problem is not understanding how to bill for jobs that require extensive diagnostic testing, and complicated procedures to arrive at the root cause for an onboard computer problem, electrical issue, or drivability issue. These jobs usually take time to analyze, using sophisticated tools, and by the shop’s top technician. Typically, these jobs are billed at a standard menu labor charge, instead of at a higher labor rate. This results in less billed labor hours than the actual labor time spent. The amount of lost labor hours here can cripple a shop’s overall profit.
      Many shop owners do a great job at calculating their labor rate but may not understand what their true effective labor is, which is their labor sales divided by the total labor hours sold. In many cases, I have seen a shop that has a shop labor rate of over $150.00 per hour, but the actual effective labor rate is around $100. Not good.
      Lastly, technician production can suffer when the service advisors are too busy or not motivated to build relationships with customers, which results in a low sales closing ratio. And let’s not forget that to be productive, a shop needs to have the right systems, the right tools and equipment, an extensive information system, and of course, great leadership.
      The bottom line is this; many factors need to be considered when looking to increase production levels. While it does start with the technician, it doesn’t end there. Consider all the factors above when looking for ways to improve your shop’s labor production.
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