Shop Look: Lube Tech of Mechanicsville, Virginia

Aug. 1, 2023
This independent shop features an English telephone booth on its property.

Location: Mechanicsville, Virginia 

Owner: Tommy Moyer 

Shop size: 4 bays (3 quick lube bays and one for minor repairs) and 5 car wash bays (4 self-service bays and one drive-thru automatic setup)  

Staff size: 9 

Staying Power  

Tommy Moyer started working for Lube Tech in the early 1980s. Then in 1986, he graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a business degree and took on a managerial shop role.  

From there, another location was added in 1996 and another in 1999. The latter is the Mechanicsville shop that he now owns independently. It’s the only remaining Lube Tech location.  

“A brief synopsis: In ‘99 when we built (that location), we were approached by Jiffy Lube to sell and (the owner) was ready to get out and I was ready to get on my own,” Moyer says. “So, we sold two of the stores and I bought him out.” 

Call Waiting 

Here’s something that you don’t see every day at a quick lube shop: An original English telephone booth from London, England. Lube Tech has one right outside. Moyer got it from an antique dealer.  

The booth had an operating phone in the ‘90s, but these days it simply serves as a great photo opportunity for customers – not to mention a surefire way to give directions to the shop.  

“I tell them, ‘Just look for the old English phone booth and you’ll find me,’” Moyer says with a laugh.  

But Moyer says there’s something else that stands out about his shop: The people. Lube Tech inspires dedication and longevity in its staff. Moyer’s son works at the shop. The lead mechanic has been there since 1999. There’s even a manager who has been working for Lube Tech since he was 14. He’s 40 now.  

“We just treat people (fairly) with a great product and a great location,” Moyer says.     

Perfectly Positioned  

The shop space is roughly 75 feet by 40 feet. Moyer says the layout of the basement mirrors the shop above. The basement is home to oil tanks, general storage, and an office. Moyer makes good use of the building, and it helps that he is also a fan of the physical location. 

“Up until 12 years ago, I lived in Mechanicsville,” Moyer says. “So, I was born and raised in Mechanicsville.” 

The shop is located close enough to Richmond that it attracts that population as well as the surrounding communities. Customers visiting the shop have access to a waiting area and an outdoor picnic table setup. But Moyer and his team prefer to not keep customers waiting by offering timely service.  

“I have a waiting room with a TV … but we all say we hope that we don't have them wait too long,” Moyer says.  

About the Author

Hanna Bubser | Editor

Hanna Bubser is the editor of National Oil and Lube News and has been writing about the automotive aftermarket since 2022. She has a bachelor's degree in English from Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. As a teenager, she drove a green 1996 Jeep Cherokee that was previously used as a forest service vehicle. Currently, she drives a 2019 Subaru Impreza. She's an avid bumper sticker collector and loves adorning her vehicle with brightly-colored conversation starters.