Ok, now, who is Mark Roberts?
I have been married to Lori for over twenty five years (it’s amazing that she has been able to put up with me that long, I am really a lucky man).
I have two wonderful children who have provided more fun and joy than anything I've done. My family and I are active members at CrossPoint Fellowship Church, and would like to invite you, if you don't already have a church home, or are looking for something different.
I have been in the Automotive Repair business for over 25 years. My business is located here in Schertz for the sole reason of providing quality automotive service to the Schertz area, and to also be able to give back to the community that I grew up in. I am a very community oriented individual and am involved in, and support many community events (my wife says to many). I am doing what I love to do and that is being active in the community that I grew up in. My father Frank, is retired Air Force and was assigned to Randolph in 1969, I have lived in this community since then. My parents still live here and my father (Frank) and my daughter (Ashley) work in the business.
I have witnessed the explosion of growth over the last fifeteen years, and it is exciting to see the changes. I like to water ski, hunt, read, enjoy my family and friends, and of course work on cars.
I could go on at length about the benefits and features of our shop. Many of which some of you are familiar with. But there've been shops over the years that had all the right ingredients, but the souffle fell just the same.
Or, for a more 'mechanical' picture - the Titanic was state-of-the-art, it was 'unsinkable'. The problem lied with the decision maker behind the wheel.
You need to know who's at the helm of this auto repair ship.
I'm a car guy; a competitor and a Christian.
As a child, I was the go-to guy in the neighborhood for bicycles stuff and just kind of a “gearhead”. When I was in high school at Samual Clemens taking Automotive Mechanics (The call it Automotive Technology nowadays) I was the go to guy for the teachers and the principal at school for auto repairs. It got me out of a bind every once in awhile also. I learned it’s good to know some people in high places (like the principal).
In my early teens I just worked on cars for fun and even took a job as a diesel mechanic right out of high School which I hated. I did not like the smell of Diesel then and I don’t really like it today. But I started working for a gas company and started repairing electronic gas pumps and thought the electronics was pretty cool. So I enrolled in the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service on electronics and learned about computers (imagine that in the early 80’s).
I then proceeded to finish this two year school and was working as Field Engineer working on various electronic equipment and IBM Mainframes. But I had to wear a suit and tie everyday and work in an office most of the time. The neat thing was that I really only had to work about three days a week and I worked on cars all the other time. I did that until I just could not stand wearing a suit and working in an office any longer and went to work for a banking equipment manufacturer working on all kinds of bank equipment and specializing in ATM’s when they were first coming about. I enjoyed that work because I worked in various places and I did not have to wear a suit. (I don’t have a problem with suits, I just did not want to wear one everyday and I wanted to work with my hands.) But the whole time I was doing this work I was working on cars in my free time. I then decided to make the jump and become an automotive repair technician full time. Everybody said I was crazy and an idiot and why would anybody want to work on cars? Well it is because it was a first love. I have never looked back and said I wish I would have done something different.
Don’t get me wrong there are always days when it’s not so fun, like diagnosing a car that we just can’t figure out and maybe a customer has had to return to us for the same problem. These cars are so complex nowadays and I find myself asking the question "why" on occasion. I think it’s because we are spoiled to a certain extent (me included), we like the conveniences of all these electronics, until they break.
I've worked, most of my career, as a technician. Master-Certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. I was awarded Technician of the year by my peers in the Automotive Service Association in 1996. I was among one of the first in the state of Texas to become Welding Certified by the Inter Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair.
After working in an industry for a number of years and teaching automotive repair to others in outr industry I decided I wanted to work for myself and began my own business repairing Automotive Supplemental Restraint Systems. The company was called Airbag Service and I worked for a number of shops throughout San Antonio, Austin and most of South Texas. I was the go-to guy for questions regarding safety systems in cars. I had several employees and two different offices and had everything working well and decided that I did not like working for a lot of these shops because I felt they were not upfront and honest with the customers regarding the repairs that were done. I decided it was time to sell the business which I did and then began working for a large company that was consolidating body shops in the industry to try to go public. What an education I got and it did not take me long to figure out I wanted no part in that “Scheme” because that’s what it was. I worked with various people of questionable ethics, for people with little or no apparent concern for what is right for employees or the public, I decided it was time for a change. So I built a brand new collision repair center in Schertz (Auto Collision Works) and then opened up the general repair business (Schertz Auto Service) a little later
I believed that you could run a facility with ethics; that treats its staff with respect and provides a cost-effective service to the public.
Schertz Auto Service exists as proof that good guys don't always finish last. Today my staff can make it to a lot of their kid's functions that I'd have missed working some of the crazy schedules for my employers.
The Writer Henry James said that "Three things in human life are important: The first is to be kind. The second...is to be kind. The third...is to be kind."
Not everyone in the auto industry is the type of people you see on investigative TV news stories. Some of us are the people the news channels consult for those stories.
Now, each auto repair business, like any business, must make a profit to keep the doors open. A business that fails - is of no use to you, either for your next need or for its ability to stand behind its repairs with a warranty.
So it is how the repair shop makes a profit that should be of interest to you.
• We've heard the ads, but there is no such thing as a $99 brake job. First of all - brakes are no place to cut corners. I've heard numerous stories of people attempting to obtain a 'cheap' brake repair only to find that the offer 'does not apply to their car' or 'we don't even stock the pads for that ad', or they're told that their car needs much more. If a facility ever does perform a 'cheap' job, the facility would need to make it up somewhere...you don't want it to be on your car and it's not fair for it to be on anyone else's car either.
• There are no such things as 'free' diagnostic procedures. I have tens of thousands of dollars in equipment; even lesser equipped facilities or lesser trained techs do not operate gratis. Expect that; if fees are 'not charged': the proper diagnosis is not performed and they're likely guessing or you're paying for it in other fees, or someone else is paying too much - to make the profit back.
I believe that fair prices on repairs that are really needed is the only way to run a business.
We find that it is cheaper to do things right the first time. We've been doing this a long time and you and your referrals have the benefit of this experience.
Here's an example:
The original brakes on one of my own truck lasted approximately 45,000 miles. While many may assume the "factory" parts to be the best, we used a pad from another supplier. The next set of front brakes lasted 70,000 miles, almost twice as long. Same driver, same operating conditions.
On that same type of vehicle we found it common to wear front tires prematurely. 30-40,000 miles was typical. Using our prescribed maintenance schedule, which is included in our service at no charge, the tires lasted until we finally replaced them on that vehicle preventivily at around 70,000 miles.
Aside from knowing what we're doing, we've been known to do what's right:
We're very serious about what we do, but it doesn't mean we aren't enjoying what we do. Our customers are like an extended family to us - we don't take advantage of family and we don't take advantage of you.
I'll leave you with this thought from J.C. Watts, Jr.:"Character is doing what's right when nobodys looking."
God Bless and take care! Enjoy your Lord and enjoy your family. (more)