Mobile Tuneups?

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by NewbieNC, Jan 27, 2008.

  1. NewbieNC

    NewbieNC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    Ive thought about doing this for a while now, but wanted to get some thoughts from you guys. What do you think of offering homeowners mobile tune-ups for their residential mowers? Seems to me people would find it more appealing than throwing the mower in the car and hauling it to the shop. Anyone do this?? Any thoughts?? Is this a dumb idea? Thanks!
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

  3. NewbieNC

    NewbieNC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    So what Ive gathered is selling mobile preventative care to homeowners is a sucky idea lol.
  4. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    I think it would be a great idea and not much risk involved. You have a truck and buy an enclosed trailer if it doesn't work just sell the stuff with little risked.

    I would probably not rely on appointments to get the ball rolling. Get out there on a sat morning when the H/O are doing the work. Especially early in the season when they are pulling the equipment out of the back and dusting it off. Be proactive don't wait on work when you do a service set a future date to get in touch for another service. The key is making it easy for the H/O.

    You could also contact the bigger contractors that don't have their own mechanics. Get them set up on regular service schedule. Don't limit yourself to Lco's either. Carpenters have compressors and generators.

    When I used to be a carpenter there used to be a guy that came around and sharpened my rigging ax and put a face back on it too. He replaced broken handles had parts for skill saws, took your dull blades and gave you sharp ones we loved that guy. The last thing we wanted to do after working all day was chase that stuff down.

    Use you imagination, I think if you are aggressive and enthusiastic the work is out there. I can't speak to the margins you will have too figure that out for yourself.
  5. NewbieNC

    NewbieNC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    Thanks! That certainly sounds more positive. I would just think...that not every homeowner (here at least) buys cheap mowers. They dump good money on Deeres, Toros and Hondas...and you would think they'd like to take preventative steps to keep em running without the hassle of running them up and down the road to the shop.
  6. Az Gardener

    Az Gardener LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,899

    There are so many things to sell them. I know re stringing a line trimmer is a daunting chore for a home owner. You could rent them specialty equipment while you are there. Good power hedgers, walk behind edger, chainsaw on a stick. You know the good tools that you only need for 15 min every other month. $ 15 minimum and 2.00 per minute. Hell I'm ready to start another business my self.
  7. NewbieNC

    NewbieNC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 67

    Ya know I never thought about re-stringing a line trimmer lol I guess because we could do it in our sleep, but I do remember a neighbor once who about shot his Husqvarna trying to re string it lol.

    Heck you should try it too!

    Giving a tune-up is such an easy thing to do
  8. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    That may be so, But....Try to sell one to a H/O if their unit runs just fine. They figure if it runs fine what's the point in a tune-up. Now, Soon as a unit starts acting up (running bad/won't start) the first thing they think is "Oh it needs a tune-up". In most cases this type repair requires more than just a tune-up to get the unit running properly again.

    So this puts it back to the other thread and the need for a mobile repair unit as MowerMedic has if doing door to door service or you will loose your keaster in windshield time running for parts etc.....
  9. yungman

    yungman LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Calif.
    Messages: 1,274

    I don't mean to burst the bubble. I just afraid that you might have to spend the time explain to each of the home owner why they need to take care of their mower and trimmer before they would even start consider. Meaning you have to put in a lot of time not fixing but answering question which most of the time they just give you a blank stare back!!!!

    Also how much can you charge? Most of the home owner don't know anything about equipments, they walk around Sears or HD, saw those $149 mower and $79 Weedeater and they think those are ok. How much can you charge them? You have to start educating them before you can even solicit the business.
    ight end up spending a lot of time teaching them not to use old gas, how to add oil etc. You teach them too good, they don't need you anymore!!! You fix all the stuff for them, they are good for 2 more years, they don't need you anymore. There is no repeat customer to talk about.

    If everyone buy $400+ mower, $250+ trimmers, then you might have a chance. I think you be better served if you first ask yourself whether engine and equipment repair is what you like to do, that is the most important question of it all, you have to enjoy what you are doing because it is 8 hours day, 5 days a week.......If yes, then really go after it, get the certificates necessary to do repair and either start your own shop or work for others.

    You can try by handing out flyers and talk to some people first. Make the appoints a week later, spend a week knocking on doors. If you get good responds, go buy the necessary stuff to do it. Don't spend the money buying all the stuff before knocking on the doors.

    Good luck, I wish you well and I wish you come back and laugh at me, I really do.*trucewhiteflag*

    JLAWNCARE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 42

    there is a guy here in pa who repairs mowers for home owner he was servicing a mower at a home i was working at told me he could keep to 2 trucks busy if had the help he also works for landscapers he goes to there shop for repairs and pm and also repairs out in field

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