Tire Taxi from JohnDow
STATS: Tire Source Tire Pros Location: Fairlawn, Ohio Website: johndow.com Cost: $100–$125 (prices vary; higher price listed is for the Tire Taxi EX Uses: Moving tires Training Required: On-site demonstrations available
TJ White is the store manager of Tire Source Tire Pros—Montrose in Fairlawn, Ohio. White has been with the company for almost seven years and has worked his way up to a management role. He started off doing general service in the back of the shop before moving up to a sales and service position. White received his accounting degree from the University of Akron and took over the store manager position in May of 2016.
Tire Source, which has six locations in Ohio, is a family-owned business that has been in operation for 25 years. The Montrose location has been open since 2003. The shop is a full-service mechanical repair facility with eight bays.
How It Works:
The Tire Taxi, which resembles a scooter, is used to stack tires, which are stacked on top of each other. The four wheels on the bottom allow the Tire Taxi to easily wheel the tires around the shop. The tool has a load capacity of 265 pounds and can hold up to five tire and wheel assemblies or eight tires. If the shop ever uses the Tire Taxi at full capacity, White says that the tallest person in the shop stacks the tires.
White says that the staff at the shop has used the Tire Taxi for roughly the same amount of time he’s been the store manager. The decision to purchase the piece of equipment was made because of the distance between the tire room and the shop floor, which is roughly 100 feet.
“It’s not super far,” White says. “But those extra trips back and forth can really add up and be a time kill.”
The shop has the small and large version of the Tire Taxi. The larger version, the Tire Taxi EX, is an extended height version, meaning the platform where the tires are placed is higher up, which makes it easier to load. White’s employees say it’s easier to stack tires and transport them all at once rather than straining their backs transporting multiple tires at a time. White adds that the Tire Taxi is compact and easy to store when it’s not being used, which is necessary for the small shop.
White says that there’s nothing he would change about the product and if anything happened to it, he’d replace it immediately. White’s not the only one that’s a fan of JohnDow’s Tire Taxi; the product took home the 2016 award for Best New Product at AAPEX in Las Vegas.
White says that the biggest return on investment has been the time savings. Before, if techs needed to grab tires, they would have to walk to tire storage, grab two tires, drop them off at the designated area, walk back to tire storage, grab two more, and again walk back to the area. With the Tire Taxi, staff only has to make one trip. Although those five minutes may not seem like a lot, White says that with the 40–50 vehicles the shop sees per day during its peak season, those extra minutes can quickly add up. According to White, the equipment paid for itself within a few weeks.