Does this sound doable? Mobile mechanic business?

So I enjoy working on cars. And I want my own business. I currently have a basic tool set to do repairs, and I have experience doing routine maintenance (oil changes, brakes), as well as some repair experience (belts, water pumps, thermostats, exhaust, radiators) and I'm wondering if I could make a legitimate business around my town (32k people over a large area).

I have the experience doing these things by just having to fix all of my own cars growing up. And I enjoy it. And would honestly like to start a side hustle of buying broken cars, fixing them, then reselling them. But I don't have the capital to invest in that yet. So I was thinking maybe I could try a Mobile mechanic type of business. And go to people's houses and service their vehicles in their own driveway. Especially because we have a large population of elderly in my town, who definitely aren't going to do the work themselves.

Would I have to make this 100% professional? Or could I just do it on the side and market through Craigslist and Facebook etc..?

Smallbusiness | 👁 675 | Posted 2018-02-28 | Share on Facebook | Twitter | Google+

| Modified: 2018-02-28 | Author:


gungorthewhite 2 years ago

I'm curious as to how this would operate. Most of the reason many people don't attempt their own repairs is lack of space and lack of tools. What kind of equipment will you carry? What if the customer only has on-street parking? What about larger equipment such as a tire changer & wheel balancer?

windclimber 2 years ago

Before I had an established auto shop, I side hustled fixing cars in my driveway. I advertised on Craigslist and offered mobile service as well. I had probably 40 customers bring their cars by my house and none who had me go to them. Most people "know a guy" or know someone who "knows a guy" who will come out to them. If they want to pay shop rates or close to it, they'll tow or limp their car to a shop. I hate to shoot you down, but the mobile schtick isn't very great in a smaller area. That said, I was working on cars out of my driveway 6 years ago, today I'm 4 years, 4 months into owning my own shop, but it's been a helluva lot of work.

Norfolk-Georgie 2 years ago

Caveat this by saying I'm not mechanically minded... but... in the 1990s the father of one of my friends was a mobile mechanic. But he specialised in brake maintenance. I'll probably get it wrong, but I think he "skimmed the brakes" and replaced the discs / drums and parts. This required specialist equipment but it all fit in the back of a Ford transit sized van. As I recall he did quite well (in a town of approx 80,000) and after a few years bought a local car repair business. So yeah, go for it but perhaps consider specialising at first.

MkJorgy 2 years ago

There was a mobile mechanic in the last town I lived in (9,000 population), used him twice, he was awesome and way more affordable than using a shop. He only used craigslist and word of mouth and I saw him being recommended on several different local facebook sites. So, I know the model works.

jojack17 2 years ago

Reselling cars can make some good income, look for cars on Craigslist and apps like offer up, you have to act FAST. The good ones go fast.. just remember they might have to be towed, title transfer can be an issue. Takes time to receive the title once you file it in your name. In Texas you are only allowed to transfer 5 cars per year. You don't even need to look for cars that are broken, just under market value. Look for cars that are being sold locally not listed online, that's usually where you will make the best profit.. selling cars not title transferred in your name is illegal, but people do it.. As far as mobile mechanic service, if it were me. I would just have a good work truck setup and start on the side.. doing business by word of mouth mostly, FB and CL.. handle repairs that you know you are capable of and that can be done in a working days time.. I would stay away from repairs like head gaskets, timing belts, exhaust work, etc etc.. It's OK to say no and refer them to a shop.. use your locally auto parts store for parts and speciality tools. This is what mechanic shops do anyways. None of them stock a large number of parts.. Getting rid of used oil and filters is not that big of a deal. Your local auto parts will take it most cases.. Like I said, I would start it as a side hustle. Helping people who can't afford to pay 3x as much to a shop for basic repairs, you'll probably find out you don't like dealing with people in this type of setting

MalaikaHearts 2 years ago

Check out yourmechanic.com. They are a mobile mechanic service that I have used twice. Maybe you can apply to work for them and learn the ropes of being a mobile mechanic before taking off on your own. They have very good prices and excellent service. A

ichiemperor 2 years ago


CaptianTwisty 2 years ago

Start out small by doing this for friends and family and people you know. See how it goes.

CaptianTwisty 2 years ago

Lost me at Angies (pay to play) List.

Tino_On_it 2 years ago

Like top comment said you would run into issues with liability and parts, but if you advertise strictly oil changes, brake jobs ect you can get away with that. This sounds more like Craigslist Facebook ect as you don't seem to actually want to get all wrapped up in licensing ect just do it as side work until you save up some money to buy a cheap car that needs some work

TarBallsOfSteel 2 years ago

I actually thought there's a decent demand for this service. Getting my oil changed is like a two hour affair in the middle of the day. If you could offer competitive pricing I don't see why a subset of the working class wouldn't take advantage of the service since it saves them a trip to the mechanic.

friendlymountainman 2 years ago

That makes sense. I've just been doing a lot of repairs lately that have been easy for me. But I know a shop would charge hundreds for. So I figured I could use it to my advantage and make some extra money. To start the side business I REALLY want to start. Which is buying broken cars and fixing/reselling them

friendlymountainman 2 years ago

With the last thing, I mean do I need a whole business name, and website and insurance and all of that business. Pretty much what you mentioned in your comment

TarBallsOfSteel 2 years ago

Unfortunately, according to Angie's list. Com you need a handful of licenses to operate legitimately. I can't speak to the legality of doing this if people sign off on letting you do it. But you would be opening yourself up for lawsuits. Spilling oil just once on someone's driveway or even someone having an unrelated issue with their car after you change an air filter would leave you vulnerable. I think it's an awesome idea, but it looks like you need a certification to be a mechanic professionally. I think the idea might work though depending on your costs of doing business/how many customers you have. You need to factor in travel time between jobs and how much you make per job. It might only take twenty minutes to do the work but then you might need to drive a ways to your next job. https://www.angieslist.com/articles/should-your-auto-mechanic-be-licensed.htm Additional source for what you need. http://www.auto.edu/blog/opening-an-auto-repair-shop-6-things-you-should-know/

RagamuffinR 2 years ago

You need insurance firstly but I don't think there is a large need for mobile mechanics. RAC/AA for example have this covered in the UK and double as recovery. (This is used in emergencies) If its not an emergency, people will usually take their car to a brick and motar garage to get any maintenance and servicing done. Personally, I don't think there is much of a demand.

Zazenp 2 years ago

This could work but you have some obstacles to get over. One is that you dont want to do this without liability insurance plus a solid contract. If you accidentally break a car, youll be sued and that lawsuit could tank the whole business if you have to pay it yourself. Getting insurance might be tough as going to peoples houses to service their car might not be something insurances have policies for. Secondly, being able to have parts on you or readily available would be tough. That means most car appointments will require two to three trips out to the house. If you arent charging for that kind of travel, your rating away at your profits. As for your last question, Im not sure what the difference is between 100% professional and advertising on social media.

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