What to Know Before You Run an Automotive Repair Shop


If you’re thinking about starting your own automotive repair shop, there are a few things you need to know first. This article will give you a brief overview of the industry and what you can expect if you decide to open up your own business. We’ll discuss things like licensing and insurance requirements, as well as the types of services you should offer. So whether you’re just getting started or you’re already in business but looking to expand, read on for some valuable information!

A Highly Regulated Industry

The first thing you need to know is that the automotive repair industry is highly regulated. In most states, you’ll need to obtain a business license and have liability insurance in order to operate. You should also check with your local zoning board to make sure there are no restrictions on running an automotive repair shop in your area.

In addition, the regulations governing automotive repair shops vary from state to state. So it’s important that you familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations in your particular jurisdiction before you get started.

Get Certified

Another important thing to keep in mind is that customers will be more likely to trust and use your services if you’re certified. There are a number of ways to become certified, but the most common is through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). To become ASE certified, you’ll need to pass a series of exams that cover different aspects of automotive repair.

Get Insurance

As we mentioned before, you’ll need to have liability insurance in order to operate an automotive repair shop. This type of insurance will protect you from any legal responsibility if one of your customers is injured while using your services. Similarly, the folks from Balsiger Insurance say that you should talk to an insurance agent to get an automotive repair shop insurance, which will offer the best benefits. There is a lot to think about before you decide on the insurance for your business, but it is an important step in the process of setting up your shop.

Think About The Services You Want To Offer

Once you have your business license and insurance in place, you’ll need to start thinking about the services you want to offer. Most automotive repair shops offer a variety of services, from basic maintenance like oil changes and tune-ups to more complex repairs like engine work and transmission replacements. You’ll need to decide what types of services you want to offer, and then find the right equipment and staff to offer those services.

Make A Financial Plan

Last but not least, you’ll need to make a financial plan. This includes figuring out how much money you’ll need to get started and how you’ll generate revenue. Automotive repair shops typically charge by the hour, so you’ll need to calculate your labor costs and mark up your prices accordingly. You should also create a budget for things like tools, equipment, and inventory. Namely, you’ll need to purchase a few key items like lifts, air compressors, and diagnostic equipment.


You’ll also need to think about how you’re going to market your business. Traditional advertising like print, radio, and television can be expensive, so you may want to consider other options like online marketing or word-of-mouth referrals. Whatever marketing strategy you choose, make sure you’re targeting the right audience and that your message is clear.

For example, if you’re targeting a younger demographic, you’ll want to focus on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. However, you should never neglect your website in the process, as it is the first thing potential customers see when they research car repair services.

Set Up Interviews For Potential Employees

If you’re going to be offering services like oil changes and tune-ups, you’ll need to have at least one certified mechanic on staff. But even if you’re just starting out, it’s a good idea to have a few employees, so you can offer a variety of services. Once you’ve decided how many employees you need, you can start setting up interviews.

When you’re interviewing potential employees, it’s important to ask about their experience and training. You should also ask them questions about customer service and see how they handle difficult situations. It’s also a good idea to have them do a practical test to see how they would handle some of the common tasks they would be performing in your shop.

Find The Right Location

Last but not least, you’ll need to find the right location for your automotive repair shop. You should look for a spot that’s easily accessible and has enough space for you to set up all the equipment you need. You should also think about whether you want to be in a commercial area or a residential area.

For instance, if you’re planning on offering a lot of services like engine work and transmission replacements, you’ll need to have a larger space. But if you’re just planning on offering basic maintenance services, you could get by with a smaller space.

Organize Your Shop

Once you’ve found the perfect location, it’s time to start setting up your shop. You’ll need to organize your space so that everything is easily accessible and clearly marked. You should also make sure you have all the necessary equipment and supplies on hand.

Last but not least, you’ll need to create a system for tracking customer information and invoices. This will help you keep track of who owes you money and when they need to pay. On the other hand, if you’re not organized, it could lead to confusion and lost revenue.

Encourage Customer Feedback

Finally, one of the most important things you can do to ensure your business is successful is to encourage customer feedback. This will help you identify any areas where you need to make improvements, and it will also give you a chance to show your customers that you’re always working to improve their experience. You can collect feedback by sending out surveys, conducting customer interviews, or simply asking for feedback at the end of each transaction.

By following these tips, you can set your automotive repair shop up for success! Just remember to stay compliant with all the regulations, offer quality services and market your business effectively. With a little hard work, you’ll be on your way to owning a successful business!


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