Is it a Dream or a Nightmare?
Everyone has experienced one of those nights. You come home from a long day at work, completely worn out, and all you can think about (besides, “What’s for dinner?”) is, “I can’t wait to get into bed and sleep!” Sometimes you climb into bed and seemingly melt into your mattress. You sleep so peacefully and soundly that nothing disturbs you. You have dreams of making the winning touchdown pass in the Super Bowl or of being a spy who successfully disarms the villain and gets the girl. You wake up the following morning feeling refreshed and rejuvenated, and ready to take on the world. Nothing can stop you.
Unfortunately, other nights are the exact opposite. You plop onto your mattress, and it feels like you’re lying on a pile of rocks. You toss and turn, with no sleep in sight. Once you do fall asleep, you have nightmares. That winning Super Bowl pass you threw the other night? It’s been intercepted, and the other team wins the championship. Remember being a smooth, debonair spy who disarms the villain and gets the girl? Well, the bad guy gets away — with the girl by his side.
Coming to work as a lube shop owner, manager or technician, you mentally prepare yourself for the day. You psych yourself up and get ready for what cars might come driving though your bay. Will it be the car of your dreams that has easily accessible air and oil filters? Or will it be your worst nightmare, with inconvenient access to the filters and a stubborn skid plate? Some vehicles may look like they have nothing in common besides the paint color. However, cars like the PT Cruiser and the Dodge Neon are practically twins underneath the hood. These cars have the same engine, same transmission and the same chassis. To classify these cars correctly, we grouped the PT Cruiser and the Dodge Neon into one. We also did this for other vehicles, such as the Ford F-150 and the Ford Expedition SUV, since they are indistinguishable from one another from a mechanical view. This year, we’ve tallied up the votes from the 2013 Fast Lube Operator Survey to reveal which cars you said are a heavenly sight to see and which ones are the boogeyman.
Living the Dream:
When certain vehicles drive into your shop, you almost have to stop and pinch yourself. “Am I daydreaming?” you wonder aloud while doing a double take. Though the car may not be the most beautiful thing you’ve seen, you know for a fact that working under the hood of this particular car is a dream in and of itself. It should come as no surprise that this year’s winner of “Easiest Vehicle to Service,” for an unprecedented sixth year in a row, is the GMC full-size pickup. This truck wears many badges including the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, as well as the Tahoe/Yukon/Suburban.
Operators noted that the reason the GMC pickup is so easy to service is because of how accessible everything is. The air filter is secured by four screws that are easy to get to and not difficult to reinstall. The oil filter is located underneath the vehicle with no obstructions. The drain plug is positioned in such a manner that it minimizes the possibility of a mess. Even older models require minimal effort to replace or repair any part you may need to get your hands on. Another reason these babies are such a dream to service is because they have extra room underneath the hood and plenty of space for lube techs to maneuver with ease.