Shop Look: Great Bear 15 Minute Oil Change of Bechtelsville, Pa.
SHOP STATS: Great Bear 15 Minute Oil Change Location: Bechtelsville, Pa. Operators: Frank Muller, David Guzman, Jeremy Garber Average Car Count: 24 Staff Size: 10 Shop Size: 3 Bays (2 quick lube)
Great Bear is a new shop led by an experienced ownership team.
Co-owner David Guzman pursued some other business interests in the area, and he knew it was a great place to set up.
“I really got to spend a lot of time up here, and thought, wow, this could really be something good,” Guzman says.
This shop just opened in August 2021 and was purpose-built for Great Bear. For building plans, Guzman and his partners knew they wanted a clean shop that grabbed attention and had drive-through bays.
They also wanted to build a lobby area that’s comfortable and minimalist. There aren’t many retail items to distract from customer comfort.
“I wanted to make the lounge sleek,” Guzman says. “You look at the lounge, and there’s really not a whole lot of clutter.”
Guzman says he was very happy with the construction, and the shop got off to a great start in its early months.
Guzman has worked in quick lubes since 1997, and he was familiar with the ease of use that a full basement provides. But the costs and local approvals were prohibitive, so he worked with the local government on a solution.
“Probably the biggest thing I had to do was make sure the township would let me design the pits,” Guzman says.
Guzman and his partners worked with their contractor, Premier Construction Solutions, to put it all together. The result is a pair of six-foot-deep pits that are joined by a walkway pit at the back, so that lower bay techs can walk from one pit to another without climbing stairs or ladders. It’s a great marriage of cost savings and usability.
“It almost works like a basement,” he says. “Once you’re down there, you go back and to the other side and hit the bay.”
Another key asset that went into the shop build was the third bay, which is separated and doesn’t have a pit. Guzman says that a lift will go into that bay for larger service jobs once they’ve trained an expert staff to keep the quick lube bays moving.
The Great Bear
The shop name is an homage to the local school and community mascot. A coalition of businesses in the area all participate by putting artistic bears in on the property, and Guzman says that he knew they would participate.
“We signed up for the local township organization,” he says. “We told them we were getting a bear.”
In keeping with the quick model of business, the Great Bear mascot will be named Zoom and will have a tropical motif to it. The idea is to remind customers that there’s a lot of adventure out there in between services.
“He's kind of a vacation bear,” Guzman says. “Go enjoy your life and then come in and get an oil change.”