Metro-East News

July 21, 2014

Mechanic behind the wheel at Belleville auto repair shop

On South Belt West and around the corner at South 10th Street in Belleville is Jerrod Davis' auto repair shop, Owner, Car-Tech Automotive. Davis has risen through the auto repair ranks over the past 25 years and has been operating his own business for the past year and a half. He recently talked shop with business writer Will Buss:

Q: How long has your shop been around?

A: "Car-Tech has been here for 20-plus years. I worked for Don Hall, who owned it before me. After 20-plus years, he came over to me and asked if I wanted to buy the place. I really wasn't in the position to buy it. So it took my wife and I about year to get financing together. It probably wasn't the best time to buy a business. The economy was still slow. We struggled a little bit because it's been slow. We're actually picking up a lot of new customers here and there from word of mouth and from other customers."

Q: How did you get into this business?

A: "I actually kind of fell into it. I started working on cars back in '89. I started changing tires and then someone offered to teach me how to do alignment. I was an alignment tech and wherever I went, I got involved in other things. Whenever someone said, 'You want to do this?,' I said, 'Sure. I'll do it.' I was self taught and never went to school. I'm good at what I do."

Q: What service do you provide?

A: "We do everything except for tires, but we still get better prices on tires through others as we work with other shops around here. We don't do transmission, but we have a transmission shop right next door here. We do brakes, tune ups, suspensions, anything and everything."

Q: How do you compete with other mechanics and those larger shops?

A: "I think I'm carrying on the tradition Don started at Car-Tech. We're very honest. We are very good at diagnosis. We try to get it done right the first time. We had a brand new customer going to a local competitor who wasn't very happy and he came here and we took care of his need and now we have a new customer. We really strive to take care of the customer first and foremost. We're willing to help them with anything they've got."

Q: So you have any future plans for the business?

A: "As long as this business comes back, and that's like everyone in this industry is wondering if business comes back. We might get business for a day or two and then it falls off again, then it gets busy for three weeks and then falls off. We do a lot of work here for two guys, when it's busy."

Contact reporter Will Buss at wbuss@bnd.com or 618-239-2526.

Name: Jerrod Davis

Job: Owner, Car-Tech Automotive @ 935 B South Belt West in Belleville (618-234-8313)

Outlook: "We try to get it done right the first time."

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