Shops Get Creative with Service, Processes During Pandemic

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Necessity is the mother of invention. 

And the COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated some creativity from business owners like those that run independent auto repair facilities. 

In order to gauge all of the extra, creative measures shops have taken throughout America during the pandemic, Ratchet+Wrench recently asked shop operators in a survey what new processes they've implemented during the lingering pandemic. Here's a look at what shop owners are doing according to our survey and interviews that have been conducted. 

For many shops, the "new normal" during the COVID-19 crisis has included implementing the following new processes: 

  • increased cleaning of vehicle interiors 
  • utilizing plastic covers for steering wheels and shifters 
  • closed lobby area 
  • utilized "sneeze shields" 
  • touchless vehicle dropoffs 
  • using partitions to separate employee work areas
  • increased usage of protective equipment 

Additionally, here's some of the new services that repair facilities have started offering during the COVID-19 crisis: 

  • photo estimates 
  • text to pay
  • bedliner work 
  • detailing
  • PDR
  • wheels, tire and tint
  • vehicle disinfecting 
  • pick-up and delivery 
  • touchless service 
  • zero-percent financing 
  • free use of shuttle service 
  • ozone treatment to kill virus and bacteria 


Shop owners also stepped up to do their part to give back. Some went so far as to offer to grocery shop or fill vehicles up with gas for their customers that did not feel safe. Other shops gave away hospital-grade disinfectant.

Many shops focused on community outreach and reached out to local businesses and purchased meals for their team to support them, or bought meals for medical workers. 


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