thoughts from the shop___________
Running Off at the Keyboard
by David A. Casey
|“Laminated, expensive sidelites
and backlites that are repairable? Yum, yum.”
An auto glass technician must be a tough customer when another company replaces his auto glass. Or, does he do it himself? And, if he does, does the installation procedure differ from his everyday commercial or insurance installations?
Can you add up all the horror stories about spalling due to moisture entering a star break and ruining the bond between the laminate and the inner layer of glass on one finger?
The bond between the PVB and glass is broken down by water? Or, even the ambient humidity can deteriorate the bond? Sounds like a weak bond to begin with. Can’t they make a better one?
When motorists know enough about the availability of repair to call a repair company first, they assuredly will prefer the technicians that are certified by their trade association.
If every repairer joined the National Windshield Repair Association (NWRA), we would have more members than all the other associations put together. We could make a much stronger impact than we do today and make some dynamic things happen for our industry. The membership fee is a small investment to make for something so important.
Don’t fret too much about the “Ten-Dollar Repair for Sale” plywood sign beside the road. Not many people take them seriously enough to give these people work once, and even fewer ever go back a second time.
The repair industry is growing in size, sophistication and importance. Are you growing with it? Are you ready for greater public awareness?
More Glass to Repair
Laminated, expensive sidelites and backlites that are repairable? Yum, yum.
I trust my glass windshield to do its job, stay clear, not scratch easily and not be harder than my head. I don’t yet trust plastic to perform as well in each of those categories.
Did you know that the first manufacturing facility in North America was for glass? The Jamestown, Va., settlers made their first glass in the New World in 1609.
Now, nearly 400 years later, there is still a lot of glass out there waiting for us to repair it.
For example, credit unions can be great customers for windshield repair. They have lots of lease returns and lots of repos every week. They are pleasant people to work with and most of the work is sheltered.
If you could take every insurance call in your market and choose the repairs that you want to do, you would probably welcome that. Just like the networks do!
Getting Out There
The highest quality and ethical standards in repair and replacement help our industries to be accountable, limit our liability and help weed out the substandard efforts of apathetic companies whose poor work hurts everyone’s image.
My town, like most others, has 22 different car clubs, from Alpha Romao to the Vintage Triumph Club, which meet regularly. Most of them would welcome a guest speaker to explain repair service, give a demonstration and educate them about repair. Remember, each one of them has a couple more cars at home, two neighbors and plenty of coworkers that they can tell about you.
Find a picture of a service technician that looks totally professional and really sharp in a company uniform. Tape the picture next to your mirror and compare your image every morning before you go out the door to help ensure that you are looking your best.
Get your favorite repair technician a moisture evaporator for Christmas. It’s a great tool for safely removing moisture, dew and frost and will help them do better repairs in inclement weather.
I always thought that the golf phrase, “Enjoy your round, it ends soon enough,” was a great parallel to life itself, not letting the little aggravations of the game get in the way of the overall pleasure of the period. Since I am on about the 14th hole of life now, it makes more sense to me than ever.
I hope you are all enjoying your round as much as you can cause it’ll be over soon enough, too.
David A. Casey is president of SuperGlass Windshield Repair Inc. in Orlando, Fla.
© Copyright 2003 Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.