Service and Repair

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How a Pennsylvania Shop Owner Converted a Virginia Customer

Here’s a very easy riddle for you: What’s 12/12, 24/24 or 36/36 and a creative way to convert new customers with later model vehicles?

You know it: Your shop’s warranty.

Offering customers a warranty is one of the best ways two owners say they are able to market their shops and even get those coveted new customers. James Santistevan, owner of Zia Automotive Repair in Albuquerque, N.M., says once they are able to get a new customer in the door and show them their 36-month, 36,000-mile warranty, that they are available on Saturdays and the customer’s schedule, there many times is simply surprise, not pushback.

For Keith Katz, owner of Quality Service Center in York, Pa., he pushes his shop’s 24-month, 24,000-mile warranty on the shop’s website, Facebook page and other social media platforms.

“All of our marketing material that gets sent out, whether it’s reminders or trying to attract a new customer, that’s one of the things we try to push,” he notes. “We use that a lot in our marketing.”

And when a new customer does call on the shop, he stresses the real benefit of the warranty: that’s 24 months, 24,000 miles parts AND labor.

“We’re not going to jump through any holes, we’re going to support your parts and labor,” Katz says. “It’s one of those wow factors, because for a lot of people it means a lot because car repair isn’t cheap any more.”

There are other secrets these owners use to convert net customers, and Santistevan has one trick no one else is using in his area that you too can benefit. Hear that and more in this episode of the NAPA AutoCare Center Podcast.

Hear that and how the warranty landing Katz and his Pennsylvania shop a new customer – from Virginia! – in this episode.

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Karen Cover

Karen Cover Dec 15    Article


Best ALLDATA News of 2017

From always-popular Tech Tips to Wrenching in Red Heels, ALLDATA News had something for everyone in 2017. To wrap-up the year, ALLDATA has bundled the most-clicked articles, so read on to see what you might have missed.

Read more.

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Chelsea Frey

Chelsea Frey Dec 14    Article


Power through a day in the shop with PowerDrawer-equipped Snap-on Roll Cab

A Snap-on® Masters Series Roll Cab becomes a powerful workhorse with the addition of an integrated PowerDrawer for rechargeable tools and devices. For the first time, Masters Series Roll Cabs will offer a five-outlet, two-USB port power strip in a dedicated PowerDrawer for charging power tool batteries, cell phones, tablets and more.

“Shops and techs need power sources now more than ever to keep tools and devices running throughout the day. Snap-on listened to its customers and is now including a charging option in our Masters Series Roll Cabs, and a host of other products," says Scott Amundson, a Snap-on Tools product manager. "As nearby and handy as a drawer in your tool storage box, the PowerDrawer makes it easy and convenient to power through the day without losing work time searching for additional wall outlets."

The KMP1163 Masters Series Roll Cabs are the latest addition to Snap-on storage options to offer charging capabilities, and come in a variety of configurations and colors.

Find out more about the KMP1163 Series Masters Roll Cab with PowerDrawer by contacting your participating Snap-on franchisee or other representative, visiting or calling toll-free 877-SNAPON-4 (877-762-7664).


About Snap-on Tools

Snap-on Tools is a subsidiary of Snap-on Incorporated, a leading global innovator, manufacturer and marketer of tools, equipment, diagnostics, repair information and systems solutions for professional users performing critical tasks. Products and services include hand and power tools, tool storage, diagnostics software, information and management systems, shop equipment and

other solutions for vehicle dealerships and repair centers, as well as for customers in industries, including aviation and aerospace, agriculture, construction, government and military, mining, natural resources, power generation and technical education. Snap-on Tools is one of the largest non-food franchise companies in the world, selling its products and services through franchisee, company-direct, distributor and internet channels.  Snap-on Incorporated, which was founded in 1920, is a $3.4 billion, S&P 500 company located in Kenosha, Wisconsin, with operations throughout the world. For additional information, visit  

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Installing Customer Parts: A Dialogue and Debate

This panel’s perspective is meant to excite a dialogue, to present ideas and concepts to support your decision or to inspire you to take a stand; one way or the other. LISTEN HERE.
Tom Ham, Rick White, and Randy Lucyk join Carm Capriotto in this important discussion. Because of the growth rate of e-commerce part availability, transparency in pricing, and ease of self-diagnosis on the internet, this is a trending topic with many different outlooks.
Key discussion points include reputation based on the quality of part being installed, owning the cause of their concern, and insurance among others. This panel has not gotten one new great customer from ever installing parts for walk in customers. 
Advice from this wise owner panel is: "If you are getting more requests from customer’s to install parts something is wrong with your business."

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Chelsea Frey

Chelsea Frey Dec 07    Article


CARDONE extends installation video competition deadline

 In the spirit of holiday giving, CARDONE Industries is extending the deadline to enter its tech video competition from December 1, 2017 to January 31, 2018. Car enthusiasts now have an extra two months to share an original video featuring the installation or service of an under-the-hood or under-the-car automotive part to be entered for a chance to win $5,000.

To enter the contest, videos must be submitted through The contest runs until January 31, 2018. There is no limit to the number of valid videos entrants can submit to the contest. Viewers and entrants are encouraged to vote, share, like, comment and tweet about their favorite videos to earn more points for that video and increase their chances of winning. The person who submits the entry with the most points at the end of the contest wins the $5,000 cash prize. Visit for a complete list of rules and entry requirements.

CARDONE will announce the winner on or about February 7, 2018 through the contest website and on The winner and other top-rated contestant videos will also be featured on CARDONE’s YouTube channel.

All entrants who submit a valid video entry as part of the contest will also be eligible to receive one entry in CARDONE’s Eco-friendly Hot Rod Giveaway.


About CARDONE Industries

We are an automotive industry leader in aftermarket innovations and engineering. Three generations and four decades strong, we build new and remanufactured vehicle parts that meet or exceed O.E. designs, at a fraction of the cost. Our global team supports a full spectrum of products and services, including a catalog of 46,000 sustainably-built parts. We build it better. Learn more at

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Technician Shortage Solution: Grow Your Own. A Real Life Story.

Eric Svedberg from Automotive Specialists in Virginia Beach, VA and millennial technician Rex Cate talk about the growth of Rex in the business over the last four years. LISTEN HERE.
The conversation gets deep into the recruitment of Rex (he worked at Panara), his training program, his annual review, and how Eric is integrating Rex into his business.
Now four years into the training program there are no regrets on either side. Rex says that there are many millennials like him out there looking for a chance. 

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Peter Meier

Peter Meier Dec 07    Article

Community Member

Congrats To Our November Winner!

Congratulations to Victor Batchelor of Pittsburgh, Kansas! He's been selected as our November "ASE Question of the Month" winner!

Sponsored by Federated Auto Parts, Victor's name was drawn at random and will recieve a collectible diecast he can display at work or at home.

Will we be naming you as our December winner? Only one way to find out - take this month's test and enter!

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Two Approaches to Training, One Successful Result

What tool is the most common one you or your technicians use? Is it a tool like we have thought of for decades, or does it fall under a new definition? As Jim Maddox, owner of Jim’s Automotive in Albuquerque, N.M., puts it, it’s probably the latter.

“We used to be mechanics that were twisting wrenches, now we’re technicians holding laptops,” he says.

Because of that shift in what is needed to repair a vehicle, it’s time to stop thinking that anyone in your shop has the luxury of putting off training when it comes to new vehicle technology. The reality is that you don’t. “New vehicle technology” covers more than just models rolling off the line from here on out. Look at vehicles coming into your shop for service. Those that are five to 10 years old have increasingly higher amounts of “new” technology on them than every before.

 “The way a vehicle has advanced the last few years alone, we are seeing more need of course for information, but also good technical training that is going to allow our guys to repair the vehicles, all the sensors, all the computers that are in a vehicle,” says Jon Bockman, owner of Bockman’s Auto Care in Sycamore, Ill.

He should know; he is a second-generation shop owner. “What we see a lot is where everything has become, you are basically an IT professional and you are using your laptop and scopes and you have to make sure you have all the information. And our guys know what that information means. Trying to keep up is the hardest part.”

Keeping up means training, whether it is in the form of videos, classes, books, online resources or other educational assets. As Maddox states, what you thought a few years ago you wouldn’t see much of in terms of new technology, you really are. And that requires more and more training.

Both shop owners agree that training and gathering information is more important than ever, and they share numerous examples in the NAPA AutoCare Center Podcast.

But here’s the difference: One man requires training of his employees and the other just encourages them. How do they compare to your business? Both get the results they want from their techs, but who do you fit more in line with?

Discover the different ways you can maximize what you get from your employees when it comes to training in this podcast, and you just might walk away with a new look at how you should approach training.

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The One Star That Can Change Your Bottom Line

For every star you have on Yelp, you generate about 9 percent more revenue.

With that in mind, are you asking for enough reviews on the right internet sites to market your repair shop? Perhaps it goes beyond asking to reworking parts of your shop’s culture to really achieve the positive reviews you deserve (again, without having to ask).

Joe Sevart, owner of I-70 Auto Service in Kansas City, explains that his shops have built a culture around “love, serve and care,” and that instilling that into every aspect of the business is reiterated often, including at weekly meetings. This culture truly works for the shop, which no longer has to ask for customer reviews like they once did.

“By everybody doing their job and giving amazing customer service and going above and beyond, our customers are choosing to write those reviews on their own,” he says during an episode of the NAPA AutoCare Center Podcast.

Speaking on the podcast along with Sevart is Sharon Anderberg, owner of Aero Auto Repair in San Diego. The two are pillars to look up to when it comes to successful digital marketing plans. They have the solid reviews, Google search results and social media clout to prove it. But as Anderberg explains, these digital rewards start within the physical shop.

“The level of service is key,” she says. “Letting your customer know you’re going to take care of them and do that no matter what, that’s what generates the affinity with the customer and they have the willingness to leave the review.”

When you are there for your clients, proving your dedication to them, or building a culture like I-70 has, customers will be more apt to leave you positive reviews in the right places, like Yelp, Google and Facebook. These last two are key, as Anderberg notes; having great reviews on those platforms is important to your Google ranking.

Learn the secret to getting online and getting noticed with this episode of the NAPA AutoCare Center Podcast. Because, as Sevart puts it, “We found out many years ago you definitely need to be online and you need to be on the first page of Google.”

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Peter Meier

Peter Meier Nov 30    Article

Community Member

The Trainer #72 - Mastering Your Digital Multimeter (DMM or DVOM)

What were the first tools you ever purchased? Of course, there was the selection of the basic hand tools and power tools, right? A basic tool box to keep it all in was also part of that initial investment, I’ll bet. But what about diagnostic equipment? Was a high end scan tool on your list? What about a scope? Odds are, neither were during the early part of your career.

 I am willing to bet, though, that a Digital Multimeter was. It’s a tool that is as vital to a technician as a hammer is to a carpenter. We use it to measure the resistance of electrical components, voltage potential in a battery, and some of us even use it to measure current flow in a working circuit. Good uses, all, but there is so much more that the DMM can perform and so many ways it can be used to solve a variety of diagnostic dilemmas.

 In this edition of The Trainer, we’ll take a look at the features included with most DMMs you may or may not be familiar with, how to perform some of the more standard tests with the meter, and then share some testing techniques you may never have considered using your meter for.

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