Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Soap Box

But first let me share my latest project. Teak furniture. A wonderful, beautiful product that when left to the elements becomes an ugly, terrible product. Witness what I started with on the left and the finished product on the right. Looking much better.

On to the Soap Box....

I have worked in the retail automotive business for a very long time but I learned most of what I need to survive machinery while working on a wheat ranch in eastern Washington when I was a teenager. It was hard work with very little profit. Called dry farming because we didn't use irrigation we were totally dependent on rainfall or snow pack for our water supply. Because things were tight we struggle at times to make ends meet but we never, I repeat NEVER, let the machinery maintenance go undone.

Maintenance was something close to religion. You just did it and usually you did it every day. Farm equipment takes a brutal beating when in operation. Dust from the dirt tends to coat and clog everything. Most equipment is used well past the design and engineering parameters. When things break, you fix them. Getting up a couple of hours earlier to grease the equipment, change oil, fuel, clean filters and check tires and other operations was a daily action.

Lately I have been reading with some interest people complaining about their equipment, be it automotive or recreation vehicle, and the cost to maintain it or the cost to fix it when it fails. Maintain and repairing my equipment seems like a no brainier to me. While it does cost money to maintain equipment I have found it takes much less money to maintain that it does to fix or repair.

The question is, where do you find a good mechanic that can do the work correctly. Over the years and because I work for a auto dealership in a management position, I have always taken my trucks, cars, and RVs to the dealership where I purchased them. Generally, they are knowledgeable about the vehicle and update any on board systems as required by the manufacturer and take care of those nasty recalls that pop up every now and then. Yes, it seems they are more expensive but are they? Do we perceive them to be more expensive or are they really that more costly?

I get tons of information as a manager in my position and I am going to pass some along over the few days to help give you some insight. Let me say that what is really needed is a consumer, you and I, who is well educated about the vehicles he or she owns. In the next couple of days I will give you some info regarding a popular oil change company (I won't name names) compared with the local Ford dealer.

Please share this with your fellow bloggers.

I leave you with this question: Did you read the owners manual that came with your vehicles and do you understand the maintenance schedule?

Be safe out there...

1 comment:

  1. maintenance schedule has been read and documented!..we, too think like you ..prevention and maintenance save money in the long run!