Contrary to the popular saying, what you don’t know can hurt you.
Too many find out the hard way that they’ve been taken for quite a ride at an auto repair shop: repairs that necessitate even more repairs, unnecessary or unauthorized work performed, padded bills and hidden charges---the list goes on.
Perhaps even more intimidating are shops in which women feel as though they’re being patronized at best and outright deceived at worst.
Dawn Grimes, co-owner of Auto Body Advantage at 1500 Thompson’s Station Rd. West in Thompson's Station, TN, aims to make auto repair a more comfortable experience.
At the Thompson’s Station location, a clean-smelling waiting area first greets the customer. Lining the upper wall is a hobby train set that traverses above a large flat-screen TV. A gaming console makes children feel at home. Nearby sits a massage chair.
Lest one get the wrong idea, Auto Body Advantage is not set up like some frilly Victorian-era tea party setting. Men can feel just as comfortable. Grimes is equally aware that many men have struggled to understand cryptic repair descriptions and repair bills.
“I have been there, which is why Auto Body Advantage wanted to offer women and men another choice when it comes to automotive repair and service,” Grimes said.
Grimes touts Auto Body Advantage as the only repair shop owned and operated by women in the area.
“I don’t know---especially in our area---of any repair shop that’s woman-owned,” Grimes said about the business that also lists her husband, Jim Grimes, as a co-owner. “My husband started the collision repair business in Spring Hill in 2008, so we’re celebrating our 10-year anniversary in collision repair. Both of us have worked in the automotive industry for 30 years. I came in five years ago.”
Two years ago, the Grimes sought to venture from strictly performing collision repair to encompass auto repair and maintenance. The Thompson’s Station facility was chosen as the proving ground for the expanded service. The Spring Hill location continues to focus on auto body work.