With the increasing number of people buying cars, auto repair shops are one of the most lucrative businesses in the United States. However, running a successful auto repair shop isn’t an easy feat. To help you with that, here are ten tips for how to run a profitable auto repair shop.
1. Install More Storage
Even in large auto repair shops, floor clutter is a common issue. This makes locating tools and other supplies much harder than it has to be. As you note down tips for how to run a profitable auto repair shop, consider collaborating with garage organization professionals to turn your shop into a clutter-free space with garage storage systems.
Install storage units, then show your team where to place various items. Propping things up against the wall increases their risk of falling and breaking things or injuring employees and customers. Lots of clutter on the floor also puts the vehicles you’re working on at risk of damage, costing you more money to address.
Once you reduce clutter in the shop, you’ll reduce the safety risks. Also, hazardous chemicals are probably lying around, including paints, cleaning supplies, auto fluids, and fertilizers. They increase the likelihood of damage to your floors and pose some safety risks for people who come to your shop, both employees and customers. You can install locking cabinets for storing harmful substances and sharp tools to enhance safety in your place of business.
You should store air compressors, power generators, and other expensive hand tools in a secure location to preserve your investment. Locking garage cabinets and drawers offers dedicated storage space. The surroundings of auto repair shops are also often dusty, dirty, and damp. Such environments are dangerous for your valuables. Garage storage systems also keep away insects and pests that can damage your tools and wiring.
2. Install a New Roof
When it comes to ”how to run a profitable auto repair shop,” most business owners focus on the interiors of their structures and forget about exterior components, including the roof. However, it’s one of the most important parts as it protects your equipment and vehicles you’re working on, among other things. Metal roofing is one of the most popular commercial roof types due to its 40 to 60-year lifetime.
There are several types of metal roofing systems available, some of which even include integrated solar or snow removal systems. Typical commercial metal roofing materials include stainless or coated steel, copper, tile sheets, tin, zinc, aluminum, and corrugated galvanized steel.
Compare to most other options, metal roofing has a unique visuall appeal, is fire resistant, and more durable. However, note that metal is susceptible to corrosion. To counteract this, modern metal roofs feature protective surface layers to mitigate damage from pollution, moisture, exposure, and other environmental factors.
Built-up roofing is built of alternating layers of tar and gravel and has a lifespan of over 20 years when proper maintenance is observed. The number of layers impacts durability and, eventually, the costs. It’s one of the oldest and most versatile types of roof, and affordable and easy to repair.
While this type of roofing can handle the foot traffic, it depends on an understructure for support. It’s UV-resistant and can be coated to reflect excess heat. That said, it has its downsides. For instance, BUR roofing has one of the shortest lifespans around, and as it ages, locating the source of leaks will only become more difficult.
If you decide to install a new roof, make sure you hire reputable roof replacement services. Professionals know what it takes to perform the job safely and effectively. They’ll also know how to address any challenges that may arise.
3. Update Your Plumbing
Updating your auto repair shop’s plumbing system with the help of a reputable plumbing company will present several benefits. One of the most notable ones is the increased efficiency. It helps prevent leaks while ensuring you have adequate water pressure throughout the structure, not to mention the savings you’ll enjoy.
Over time, the increased efficiency will result in fewer drain issues and lower maintenance costs. Using more efficient contemporary fixtures can reduce operational costs by avoiding higher water waste bills. Additionally, replacing out-of-date parts will increase your building’s value and extends the useful life of your plumbing system.
So, to answer the question ”how to run a profitable auto repair shop,” routine professional maintenance and upgrades are always a good idea. Enhanced efficiency is just one of the benefits of upgrading your plumbing; there are many more.
4. Update Your Shopfloor Management System
Shopfloor management systems offer immediate analysis as opposed to needing to wait to observe how smoothly production is going. This gives you complete visibility of your supply chain and makes it easier to spot areas needing improvement. The entire shop will benefit from real-time access to floor status information thanks to automated or semi-automatic data-gathering systems.
You can install workstation terminals so employees can update the status of tasks as they’re being completed. All departments will then receive this information, ensuring everyone can access it as soon as it becomes available. Updating your shopfloor management systems can also lower costs in several ways.
Older systems used manually input data; therefore, monitoring them needed full-time staff to manage the spreadsheets and relay the information to the relevant individuals. On the other hand, modern systems can collect the data automatically as work is going on. Shopfloor management systems also make it easier to identify areas that need more attention, saving time for project managers. Hire shopfloor metrology services to help update your shopfloor management system.
5. Upgrade Your HVAC
Using an old HVAC system will result in high energy bills, which can make up most of your business expenses. Upgrading to a brand-new system with energy-saving technologies can help reduce this. A new system will operate more reliably than an older one, saving money on maintenance and repairs.
It’ll also help your auto repair shop adopt more environmentally friendly practices. If you’ve been taking steps to greenify your office and reduce paper waste, the next logical step is your commercial HVAC system. Great indoor quality is one of the most important parts of ensuring the optimal health of your employees.
A new cooling and heating unit will have improved components, such as air filters and purifiers, that rid the air of contaminants like bacteria or viruses. Without a properly functioning system, these contaminants can cause health complications for your employees, affecting their productivity. The effect will trickle down to your customers.
Modern HVAC systems feature technology that ensures reliable temperatures and consistent humidity across the facility. If your auto repair shop is too hot or cold, your customers’ comfort and employees’ productivity will suffer. The silent operation of modern systems makes for a peaceful workplace environment for your staff and enhances the customer experience. So as you think ”how to run a profitable auto repair shop” remember to upgrade your HVAC.
6. Invest in New Garage Doors
When thinking of how to run a profitable auto repair shop and the upgrades to make, navigating your options can be quite confusing. There are employee investments, technology, and software innovations, and infrastructure needs to consider. One project that’ll give you the most return is a commercial garage door replacement.
Newer commercial garage doors come in various durable materials that promise to last longer. They’re made to withstand the demanding job of working at your company. For commercial installations, steel coil doors are a great option.
Manual control, auto reverse, and motion sensors are just a few of the important safety features that come with commercial garage door openers. These features are regulated with strict compliance to keep the operator and others safe since commercial garage doors are heavy and can cause serious injuries and even fatalities in case of mechanical failure.
7. Get New Lighting
If technicians can’t see what they’re working on, they won’t be able to do the job effectively. Technicians can’t perform thorough inspections under a vehicle if they’re using some torch for illumination. This is why getting new lighting is key to keeping service bays productive. Proper shop lighting involves more than just installing hanging fluorescent lights or pulling a flashlight from the workbench.
Thanks to innovations in lighting and battery technology, many lighting options available today perform better. One of the most notable advancements is the increasing adoption of LEDs (light-emitting diodes). LEDs last longer, produce less heat, and have better dust and water resistance capabilities. Like that’s not enough, they also consume less power, saving on your monthly electric bills.
If you’re working with substances that might potentially lead to hazardous conditions, you’ll need to invest in lights made for this purpose. One of the best solutions in such a case is explosion-proof lighting. Even in spots where hazardous fumes are produced by spray paint and other chemicals, their lower current draw and robust housings minimize the risk. To keep your facility and team safe from shattering glass, fires, and other unwelcomed outcomes, ensure the electrician designs the lighting in high-risk areas to specifically prevent them.
8. Upgrade Your Bookkeeping System
One of the best ways for ”how to run a profitable auto repair shop” is to upgrade your bookkeeping system. The popular accounting software Quickbooks online automates bookkeeping and will help you manage your finances better. It allows users to track payroll, inventory, income, expenses, etc. It also offers cutting-edge features like payment processing and invoicing capabilities so you can manage your business from anywhere in the globe!
The online version of QuickBooks is accessible through any web browser, whereas the desktop version is installed on your computer’s hard drive. Most startups employ various financial tools, including invoice and bill pay tools, credit card accounts, bank accounts, and payroll software, to manage the different aspects of the accounting process. As your business grows, you may require specialist finance tools to manage each function’s increasing level of complexity.
Some accounting software limits your possibilities for other financial tools as they only integrate with a limited number of other platforms. With the capability to work with over 650 business tools, including Gusto, PayPal, Justworks, Expensify, and Bill.com, QuickBooks Online gives you a complete picture of your startup’s financial situation and streamlines the month-end close procedure.
9. Invest in a New Floor
While it may not seem like it, investing in a new floor is a great tip for how to run a profitable auto repair shop. Concrete floors installed by concrete contractors are an increasingly popular choice for commercial buildings. However, not just the concrete you walk on outside; polished concrete. Its increasing popularity can be attributed to its affordability and range of design possibilities.
The fact that concrete floors are more resilient than other types of flooring is one of its finest qualities. Concrete is very robust and tough, making it resistant to damage from scrapes, dings, and falling items. It provides long-lasting results that can’t be produced by other flooring materials.
10. Establish Your Place in the Market
Opening an auto repair shop is one thing; turning it into a successful one is another ballgame. When the odds are stacked against you, it can be quite scary, and you may feel like you’ve taken on too much. The first one to three years of your business will be the most volatile and uncertain as you try to establish your presence in the market. There are various marketing channels you can leverage to promote your auto body repair center.
This includes offline channels such as the community business newsletter or the local newspaper or online marketing such as creating Facebook listings. Ensure you use an omnichannel approach, which ensures your messaging is consistent across all channels. The location of your shop is important because your ideal customers won’t want to go too far to get their car serviced.
Consider the places that different types of vehicles frequent. If your business is focused on luxury automobiles, would it make sense to open there? These tips are a key part of how to run a profitable auto repair shop.
More and more people are buying cars, and with the increasing adoption of electric cars, the trend won’t stop any time soon. Opening an auto repair shop now will set you up for success. Use this read as a guide for how to run a profitable auto repair shop.