How long would you guess the average car owner holds on to his or her car? Six years? Seven? Eight? As the quality of automobiles has increased, so has the length of time Americans keep their cars before trading or selling them.
According to a 2015 study, Americans hang onto cars and light trucks on average between 11 and 12 years.
And that number is expected to continue its rise as vehicles run better and longer. What may have car dealerships wringing their hands at delayed business should have opportunistic automotive repair entrepreneurs excited. Let’s take a quick look at three ways to add revenue to your car repair businesses that do not require much up-front investment. They do, however, provide a great chance to significantly increase your profit margin.
One of the biggest concerns about chipped and cracked windshields for vehicle owners is how common they are.
In fact, windshield damage is the most common vehicle insurance claim. But the frequent occurrence of windshield chips and cracks is also what makes windshield repair such a great add-on for any vehicle repair businesses.
Repairs of chips and small cracks are so simple to make, if you have the right training, that the service is nearly pure profit. For the cost of a dollar or so, you can charge around $50 for each initial repair and perhaps a lower amount for additional repairs made at the same time. In many cases, the owner’s insurance carrier will cover the repair cost. And because repairs can be made quickly, there is very little reason for owners to delay repair, particularly when damage can result in serious safety issues.
A few decades ago, vehicle owners started thinking about trading when their auto passed the 50,000-mile mark. Now, thanks to improvements in automotive durability, it is not unusual to see cars and trucks on the road surpassing 100,000 miles on the odometer and still going strong. Though they may run almost as well as new cars, high-mileage vehicles do not always look like their younger counterparts. Because of their many miles or years on the road—or in parking lots with runaway shopping carts—older autos are more likely to have small dents and dings that show their true age.
That is why paintless dent repair (PDR) offers such a great opportunity for your car repair business. With proper training and tools, PDR allows you to fix dents, dings, hail damage, and similar body issues without affecting the original factory paint job. Car owners like it because they can often get their vehicles back the same day, and it costs a lot less than full-on body repair.
Plastic headlights—which are the standard instead of glass these days—often become discolored over time because of UV light, road debris and exposure to other elements. This can lead to dramatically decreased visibility and greater safety concerns. Replacing the lenses can be expensive, but it is possible to restore the existing lenses instead for a much smaller cost.
Depending on the type of car, it can cost the owner several hundreds of dollars to replace the headlights. If you can offer to return dull and hazy headlights to the original clear condition for a fraction of the cost, you will deliver a wonderful service to your customers while providing yourself an additional revenue generator. It is not difficult to refurbish dull headlights—and there are plenty of do-it-yourself kits vehicle owners can try. However, DIY results are often disappointing. You can market your business as a much better solution because of your professional-grade tools and expertise.
Paintless dent repair, plastic headlight restoration, and windshield chip repair have significant attributes in common. They are all easy to add to an automotive repair business, they have high profit margins, and they come with such little additional hassle for vehicle owners that they are easy to yes to.