I Own an Automotive Shop – Do My Doors Need to Be Fire Rated?

Automotive Workshop image 555Auto repair is a lucrative industry. With more than 225 million licensed drivers taking to American roadways, there is no end to the need for repairs to those vehicles. And repairs are costly — the average repair bill will run a motorist between $500 and $600, with yearly costs of operation (once you add in gas, insurance and loan repayments) adding up to around $8,500. All this equates to a booming repair industry that has a lot on its plate, especially when considering all the things a reputable mechanic much do in order to maintain a loyal customer base of happy and repeat customers.

The first thing any good mechanic must do is hire a well-rounded staff. Mechanics joining with previous shop experience is definitely a plus, but more importantly, finding employees who have earned certification through respected automotive, diesel and collision repair academic programs is critical. Academic courses not only teach the requisite skills to perform professional and timely work on clients’ vehicles, it also satisfies those very clients who are often skeptical about their service providers, even clients who have been with you for years. Hiring certified professionals will also instill a sense of relief in you, as well. Cars are often the most expensive possessions that individuals own, and their maintenance and repair can be tricky work. Hiring under-qualified staff to work on these invaluable assets is simply a recipe for disaster.

Inexperienced mechanics work slowly. They have not developed a routine that includes keeping a clean workspace, and are more prone to errors than professionals with years of experience and certifications to back up their work. There is nothing more devastating to an automotive shop than having to explain to customers that their cars won’t be coming back to them any time soon due to a mechanic’s mistakes under their hood.

Along with competent and professional staff members, it is important to do your work in a clean and safe environment. This is where investing in commercial steel doors fits into your business plan. Working out of a dump will accomplish two things. Primarily, it will turn business away, but it will also allow your stable of professional mechanics to get complacent in their work. As a result, the quality of the service you offer will begin to suffer. This is true for all work spaces, not just garages. In any work environment, if the office isn’t kept tidy or the management teams allows the staff to struggle with subpar amenities and structural features, they will begin to reflect this slack attitude in their work.

Steel, fire rated doors also reflect a professionalism to your prospective customers. Millions of drivers on the roads means that there are hundreds of thousands of repair shops for those customers to take their business to. By investing in your image, you help solidify a brand for drivers to seek out rather than stumble upon by chance.

Auto repair shops can be an expensive venture if done right. Certified mechanics will cost you a little more than inexperienced ones, and proper doors, windows, and office fixtures won’t be cheapest. But if you want to make it in the long run, putting in the work to develop a safe and professional environment for your staff and clients will make all the difference in seeing future success for you and your business.

So yes, your business should have fire-rated doors, but there is a lot more to consider than a few fire resistant fittings around the shop.