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JimO

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JimO last won the day on June 10

JimO had the most liked content!

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About JimO

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    Posting Member

Business Information

  • Business Address
    375 Chestnut Ridge Road, Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, 07677
  • Type of Business
    Auto Repair
  • Your Current Position
    Shop Owner
  • Automotive Franchise
    Other
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    Tech-Net

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  1. JimO

    Tires -

    Mount $14.00 per tire Balance $14.00 per tire Valve stems $2.50 each (German, not from China) Disposal $3.00 each Rotation (No TPMS initialization required & with no other tire work) $30.00 Rotation (With TPMS initialization post rotation & with no other tire work) $34.00 Tire repair (puncture) - Locate leak, approved plug/patch from inside, re-mount, re-balance, install on vehicle, check air all around, reset TPMS (if needed) and secure spare (if needed) - $42.00 I am in North East New Jersey, last exit on GSP going North.
  2. JimO

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    Scott, I think you identify a valid point that if we adopt a zero tolerance, best tires on rear approach, tire rotations are basically eliminated. New cars presented for the first service will often have a measurable difference between front and rear tires, should they not be rotated? Different publications and articles that I have read in the past will often refer to tread depth differentials as a determining factor when deciding rotate or not to rotate. That being said it is unclear to me where these tread depth differential specs come from. Most of the specs that I have seen indicate a 2/32” to 3/32” tread depth differential cut point. Meaning if the front tires are at 7/32” and the rear tires are at 9/32” the tread depth differential would be 2/32” and rotating would be acceptable. But if the front tires were at 5/32” and the rear tires were at 9/32” then the differential is 4/32” which is excessive and the tires should not be rotated. In a previous post I suggested that the RMA should provide us with written guidance concerning tire rotations that include definitive differential tread depth measurement cut points. If they determine best tires on rear regardless of tread depth differentials then so be it, but put it in writing.
  3. JimO

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    Junior, I think you need to open a few more owners manuals and try to find something concerning tire rotations besides recommended rotation intervals and rotation patterns. I have opened thousands of manuals over the years looking for a variety of information. Sometimes the manuals have useful information and sometimes I am disappointed. Lack of written information in these manuals and other reference information concerning tread depth differentials front to back and when NOT to rotate is what caused me to post a comment on this subject. Let’s be realistic, the owners manual states how to operate and generally maintain the vehicle but in most cases it lacks the technical information that we require. The owner should read and reference the manual for their vehicle and when practical the technician can do the same and in doing so may get lucky and find a solution to a problem. Sorry to bore you with what you refer to as “tech 101 stuff” but I personally think Tyrguy is correct in keeping any reference material at hand to show a customer that questions him. I always strive to give each and every customer “the right answer” and I would never perform a task improperly because a customer thinks it should be done that way. If you elect to refuse jobs because someone questions you that is your prerogative but I would rather take the time to explain my reasoning and if needed back up my statements with written information from a reputable source. Hopefully your customers accept your “my way or the highway” mentality. I would never perform improper “wrong” repairs to “appease a customer” and I find it odd that you somehow read my post and came to that conclusion. Although your post indicates otherwise I beg to differ, you did your best to call me out but unfortunately it was not good enough. You missed the point.
  4. JimO

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    I agree with tyrguy but I think it is a shame that we, all of us, need to resort to keeping copies of car magazines on hand in order to provide proof to our customers that we are doing the right thing. The RMA sets guidelines in writing for tire service and repair, they need to supply us with written tire rotation guidelines. When to rotate and when not to rotate with specific tread depth differential cut points to be used as opposed to old magazines. My comment is not criticizing tyrguy’s use of the magazines, it is all we presently have but we do have organizations in place to set required rules and specs for these things. To anyone representing RMA: The time has come, get going and supply us with something in writing.
  5. JimO

    Need some advice

    I guess your final message illustrates the variety of talents you need to have when you are self employed. 1- You started being a mechanic, buisiness owner. 2- You then became a detective gathering information from your peers and the crime scene. 3- You then became a judge and made a decision who should bear the cost of restoration. 4- You then became an arbitrator by calling the customer, explain the situation and arriving at a fair point of liability for both involved parties. 5- You then became an accountant and carefully weighed the financial pros and cons by involving the insurance company. 6- During the entire ordeal you became a student, attended the School of Hard Knocks and graduated with honors. Good job!
  6. JimO

    Need some advice

    Not a good position to be in. As “Old & Tired” asked- Did you replace the hose? If you did, was it the correct hose? Did it match the original hose? Did the tech have any issues with proper fit? Was the hose supposed to be “cut to fit” and that step was overlooked causing a mis-routing of the hose and a possible contact issue? Was there fitmet issues with the radiator which may have caused a hose routing issue? Did the new radiator match up to the old radiator? Most fan shrouds do a pretty good job at keeping hands, hoses and other components away from contacting 'the fan, was the shroud damaged? With 200K miles on the vehicle an engine mount or mounts may be worn/broken and allowed the engine to lift out of position thereby allowing the fan to contact the hose. How can the dealer come to the conclusion that whoever replaced the radiator is at fault but they are unable to identify how the fan contacted the hose? Could dealer check Freeze Frame information for an over temp code, miles driven since code set, coolant temp when code set?
  7. JimO

    TIRE ROTATIONS

    I understand that many of you responding feel that you need to perform labor tasks for free because someone else in your surrounding area offers it for free. Where does that end? Free brake inspections? Free tire repairs? Free code scans? Free battery installs? And it seems that all of the free services are happily given away with the thought or excuse that it affords us the opportunity to inspect the vehicle and find other work. Routinely I read posts concerning anger that Advance or Auto Zone offers free services such as code scans or battery replacement. Why would we want to walk down that same path that they are on? As soon as a labor function is offered for free it degrades it’s true value. We are professionals and as professionals we deserve to be compensated appropriately for whatever labor is expended or we risk degrading our labor efforts to valueless. My ability to inspect brakes during a tire rotation is not hampered by the fact that the customer is paying for the rotation. Understandably by giving away free rotations it may (or it should) put you in a position of being able to inspect more brakes. What is the tipping point? In an era with fewer and fewer labor tasks being required on the newer vehicles we may be left with doing free rotations. When does giving away labor equate to a financial gain? Leave that to be figured out by the accountants, until then we will continue to charge for services rendered. Presently our charge for tire rotation is $30.00 except when we have to interact with TPMS post rotation then the charge is $35.00. Concerning the original question of best tires on front or rear. We put best on rear unless tread depth differentials are 2/32” or less. As an industry we should demand that the RMA establish written guidelines for us to use and be able to show to our customers.
  8. JimO

    BBB

    I was a member in the early 70’s for about 5 or 6 years. Never saw the benefit and the cost failed to justify the expense so it was terminated. I doubt if today’s generation is even aware of the BBB which really makes it pointless.
  9. Problems such a seized nuts/bolts/sensors can often be anticipated on a job based on past experience and then be explained to the customer up front. When it comes as a surprise I always call the customer and explain the situation that the anticipated labor charge will increase due to unforeseen complications. I find that keeping the customer in the loop and informed prevents trouble. I feel that if I fail to inform the customer then I don’t deserve compensation for the added labor but if I take the time to inform the customer and allow him or her to be part of the decision making process then there are no surprises, no hard feelings and the CUSTOMER pays for the additional labor repairing his or her vehicle. A seized, rusted or broken bolt is not my problem unless I allow it to be.
  10. JimO

    Mental Health/Depression

    I think SPG356 wrote a great reply to your post and I hope that you do have a close friend or family member that you can draw strength from. If not then you always have us and we all know the trials and tribulations of this vocation. We work all day “fixing” things and then when we have a problem it is hard to accept that we are unable to fix it. You need time, patience, understanding and prayer and I am sure you will be OK.
  11. I have been using a time clock for 35 to 40 years and would never be without it. My original clock required me to add up the hours at the end of the week. This old clock was replaced +/- 15 years ago with a time clock that totals the hours after every in/out entry. My employees like it because they are paid for every minute they are punched in for and they can see their total hours worked whenever they want. Bottom line - The employee that arrives to work on time and does not abuse lunch time will love it. The employee who is always late, takes extended lunch time and leaves early will hate it. I prefer to cater to the punctual worker that conforms to our lunch schedule. I also have my techs punch in and out for every job so I can keep track of billable hours more efficiently.
  12. I have a three bay gas/service station that I own with my brother for 45 years. Either myself or my brother or both of us are there at work every day. We are fortunate to have two great techs that have each been with us for over 35 years. They both respect our rules and style of work and in turn we appreciate and respect them. My day is split between being in the office and being out in the shop working with my techs, sometimes side by side on the same job or by myself in the next bay. I guess the best, most direct answer to how I monitor internet use is this: I am there handing them the brake pads for their next job, I am there opening the bay door on a cold day, I am there in the shop seeing a 24” monitor being used for shop related reference, nothing more, nothing less. If I was an absentee owner I would no doubt be somewhat out of touch and monitoring texting and internet use would not be my only worry or concern.
  13. Texting and random non-buisiness related internet searching is not allowed except during lunch and break. Occasional cell phone use (in coming and out going) is allowed and has not been abused. All of the above can get quickly out of hand unless strict guidelines are established and consistently enforced. This means that owners and managers need to follow the same restrictions. “What is good for the folks is good for the people”. If all of America eliminated all non-work related cell phone/internet use our overall productivity would increase dramatically.
  14. My problem with Advance is as follows: CarQuest was a great supplier with good parts, good pricing, knowledgeable staff and a clear indication that we, the professional repair industry, came before the errant walk in customer off the street. Advance partially took that away since their acquisition of CQ. I still deal with CQ but it is not the same and I feel that I am in bed with the enemy. Advance wants and needs all of us but still caters to the general public. Their pricing appears good when looking at profit margin until you take the time to compare and find out that they inflate both the cost and list prices above and beyond dealer pricing in many cases. My area is flooded with Advance radio spots touting free code checking, free electrical system testing, free battery installs and free wiper blade installation. Advance is no longer my supplier but instead they have knowingingly taken on the role of becoming my competition. When my competition offers free services and sells parts to walk in customers at or near my cost it becomes a major concern. Do yourself a favor and spend time reviewing and comparing cost and list pricing. To all of you guys that are Interstate dealers (include me in that list) - the radio spots offering free install of Interstate batteries at or near our cost is right around the corner.


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