More cars coming

2009 will bring more opportunities to make money than ever before, provided your shop and bays are set up to handle the business. No, really.


This year will bring more opportunities to make money than ever before, provided your shop and bays are set up to handle the business. No, really.

According to aftermarket studies from Lang Marketing Resources Inc. and AAIA, the number of vehicles per bay has steadily increased over the past decade, and this year will see a watershed movement.

“The number of car and light truck service bays in the U.S. is steadily declining, with nearly 45,000 bays shuttered during the past 10 years. At the same time, the population of light vehicles on U.S. roads continues to climb. As a result, there are currently 30 percent more cars and light trucks for each service bay in the U.S. than 10 years ago,” said Jim Lang, president of Lang Marketing Resources Inc. (www.langmarketing.com), in his “Aftermarket Insight” column.

“Over the next year or two, the number of vehicles per bay will soar, triggered by thousands of dealers closing across the country. … On a positive note, this presents opportunities for companies which can make technicians and bays more productive.”

Tool and equipment manufacturers are constantly working to improve tools and procedures for the shop. As vehicles increase per service bay, it will be key for you to stay on top of what’s coming out to keep your bay as efficient as possible.

“The closing of more than 2,000 car dealers during 2009 will reduce the number of bays by nearly 30,000, from this single cause alone. This will more than top total bay closings during the past seven years and dramatically expand the number of vehicles per service bay in the U.S.,” Lang said.

Tool companies are working to make you more productive, whether it is with hand or power tools, diagnostics, service equipment or even tool carts. You already have the tool (in your hands right now) to keep up with advances and innovations and be at the forefront of efficient shops that can handle the extra work.

PTEN will continue to get you information on the latest tools so you can evaluate what you need to improve your shop’s efficiency. Whether it’s adding a cordless impact wrench to move quickly from vehicle to vehicle without recharging, or evaluating your needs for a new tool cart to work more at a vehicle without going back to the toolbox as often, PTEN brings you tool information in print and online as fast as possible.

Be sure to check out PTEN’s new Online Buyers’ Guide for the latest products as soon as we hear about them, as well as an ever-growing database of tools and companies that are working for you.

Also, in time for our 20th anniversary, we are calling now for your toolbox pictures, ALL toolbox pictures, to be part of our huge toolbox contest. We are looking for “most vintage,” “best graphics,” “best accessories” and “most cluttered” pics before June 30. We will be giving away toolboxes and tool carts from Snap-on Tools, Mac Tools, Matco Tools, Cornwell Tools, Montezuma, Extreme Tools, Homak, GoBoxes and J. Reico.

Be sure to keep up with PTEN and pten.com to stay current on tools, and tool giveaways, to help you at work.

P.S. Congratulations to Terry Blanckaert of Lomira, Wis., who won a $100 American Express Gift Check from PTEN for participating in a PTEN online survey. Watch your inbox for more PTEN survey opportunities — you could win a couple bucks or some tools yourself!

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