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A Master Technician, a microphone, 30 years of experience in the Automotive Industry: buckle up! Come along as we take a look at the current state of the automotive industry from the point of view of the guys and gals turning the wrenches. So no matter what you fix, how you fix it, or how many tools you have to fix it with: welcome to the Grease the Wheels Nation. Also once in a while we take a look at the makes and models of cars we work on through the lenses of history, economics, politics ...
 
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show series
 
On This week’s Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy reimagines some popular games to be more on brand with technicians and people who fix things for a living. There’s probably a good 2/3rds of you reading this right now who are playing “Trash Jenga” (we want to see who has the tallest!) but what other games are out there? From the classics: “Battleship”,…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we get into some of the things that the “people of the chair” don't see about your average technician working in the automotive industry today. Doctors have a hard job, but typically people don’t evolve as fast as automobiles- otherwise we should really have bluetooth by now! We also take a deep dive into the way th…
 
On this week's episode of Grease the Wheels, we get into some of the laws and legal things to keep in mind when it comes to our occupation, and we don’t even get to OSHA! Uncle Jimmy finds some of the laws and guidelines for the State of Texas when it comes to auto repair from a consumer's perspective. The too long didn’t read for this entire episo…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we get out of self-reflective introspective mode and go straight for the jugular: asking the pointed question “who are you?” to everyone else in the building! We know what we are there for, but a lot of these other bit part players can have nebulous or extremely vague job duties which lead them to have a variety of …
 
In this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we get introspective with asking ourselves some questions when it comes to our own happiness. Yea, we’re wading into the murky waters of mental health! We found a site called “Positive Psychology” for self reflective questions to ask yourself, and decided it was perfect fodder for a podcast. When you loo…
 
On this weeks episode of Grease the Wheels, we detail the amazing journey of being an automotive technician in true Uncle Jimmy fashion. From being a mechanically adept or interested youngster with a POS car, to making the leap into tech school and eventually becoming a skilled journeyman, to eventually exiting the industry either on a gurney or th…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we talk about the massive technician shortage and some of the brilliant fixed ops plans to fix it. We talk at length about an article we found on LinkedIn where they address all but one of the major causes for why shops are having problems keeping technicians. The one they missed though pretty much invalidates the …
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy puts on his prophecy hat and talks about some of the things that we can see coming down the pike for the automotive industry. It is not a secret that the automotive industry is very slow to adapt with some things, the fact that they still employ salesmen when we have internet sales pretty sor…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy falls asleep on the couch and wakes up at 4AM to record a podcast. Most technicians are a straight up bargain. From the amount of things that we have to know to what the shops that employ us charge, we know that there is a real disconnect between the rate at which we receive raises to the rat…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we see how many times Uncle Jimmy can say the phrase, “don’t be a dick!” This is another one of those infamous, extra-spicy, “weekday night” episodes compounded with the fact that he is fresh off vacation. So When Uncle Jimmy gets back to the shop and it is a s***show, he goes off a bit and threatens corporal punis…
 
On this week's Grease the Wheels we talk about the new guys that are attempting to put a dent in the 650,000 mechanic and technician job vacancies nationwide. We all have a million “new guy stories”, and let’s be clear we want to hear every single one of them! Obviously they are not set to replace us right now, but given time and space to develop s…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we give you some of the right tools for, well, greasing the wheels! Right now people are looking for jobs in tons of different industries, but in our case the tables are tilted a bit more in our favor because of the technician shortage. No employer is going to advertise the things about their shop that su…
 
On this week’s completely off-the-rails episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy gives a literal voice to some of the tools and equipment in your shop. What would happen if tools could talk? What if your wheel balancer, alignment machine, and tire machine could scream at you with the voice of your good old Uncle Jimmy when they’re being operated i…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are talking about a bunch of things that Uncle Jimmy can’t explain about the automotive industry. We go in depth into things that we can’t explain as technicians in regards to some of the higher up’s not having a good grasp on what is going on in their own shops and the industry in general. We also go…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we talk about indies, mobile techs, and “rogue techs” who are working out of their home garages. Because we work in a dealership, this podcast often revolves around working for a dealership as a mechanic, but there are many modern alternatives that have been gaining traction as the business has evolved. I…
 
On this week's Memorial Day episode of Grease the Wheels, we talk about the generations in regard to the conflicts they fought and the cars they had to fix. Fittingly omitting “The Lost Generation”, we examine the incredibly simple nature of early mass produced automobiles when they were being driven by “The Greatest Generation”. This is the genera…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we are exploring a favorite topic of ours and giving some real world potential fixes for the problem. The problem for this week’s episode is the technician shortage, with new facts and figures indicating that the industry could have up to half a million unfilled job openings in the not-so-distant future o…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we talk about the bus! The bus we are referring to in this case is the metaphysical bus of the blame game, often between irate customers and uncaring management. We’ve all been hit with it in our careers as mechanics or just people who fix things for a living, and more often than not it is undeserved. Wh…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we apply the arc of the extremely popular show “Bar Rescue” to the automotive sector. Folks, this one would get ugly in a hurry. First off, there are a lot of people in management in the automotive sector that think everything is absolutely fine despite their businesses actively falling apart due to eith…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we talk about those people and places that you don’t talk about anymore, because they’re on the blacklist! The blacklist when we are talking about the automotive industry also includes the “do not hire” list, and there are a lot of ways to get on someone’s blacklist. Almost every shop has some form of a blacklist, …
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we take a break from our sustained assault of the senses and take aim at another plague of the world today: passive aggressive attitudes. In the automotive industry being passive aggressive is about as common as breathing with some people. However, in a departure from form we actually give you ways to be more passiv…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we talk about the sense of touch! We also go into depth on having “the touch” and how to develop your own personal “touch” when working on cars. With the amount of components on modern cars that can’t be readily seen or accessed, having a good sense of touch is extremely important. “The Touch” is almost m…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we are talking about the sense of smell. There are a lot of smells that cars make and have in general. Right off the bat, the olfactory system is one of the major triggers for memory, so when you smell something and it makes you think of a very specific moment in time that isn't a coincidence. We also tal…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we talk about the incredible amount of things that we as mechanics can tell about a car by the way it sounds. There are a ton of issues on cars, boats, machines, whatever you work on- where the first sign of trouble is going to be something not quite sounding right. Yet, somehow our customers (and produce…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we talk about some of the things we have seen as mechanics. From the way that customers treat their cars like rolling dumpster fires to some of the terrible previous “repairs” we have seen literally everything. When it comes to the senses, we can tell a lot about a car by the way it looks. As technicians …
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we are going back to our meat and potatoes of doing angry diatribes about service managers. As a disclaimer, if you have a good one thank them because this is a bit like finding a virgin on a maternity ward. Or if you have one that has potential to be good, please help to steer them into doing things the right way.…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we make you think of the Beastie Boy’s with the title while actively testing the limits on the definition of satire. How would you sabotage where you work without ever causing any physical destruction? You choke off the supply of people who are willing to work there. Breaking stuff, swearing at folks, stealing, and …
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we are talking some used car horror stories so this is a good one. Why do people buy cars online without looking at them first? As mechanics we understand the level of carnage that can be going on with a seemingly normal looking car, but a lot of people don't. Even worse is when they call you for a used car pre-pur…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, you get to hear a podcast from a host who hasn’t had power or running water for 7 days prior to recording! We’re not going to get into it this week (it'll probably have to be a two parter), but these few upcoming episode’s are going to be a special brand of insane that only your beloved Uncle Jimmy can p…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we are talking about some of the things that make us happy as automotive technicians. We come up with several metrics to figure out if you should stay with your current shop based on how happy it makes you. There are a million things working in any shop that can make you unhappy, so it really is surprising when plac…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are going over some of the general things that happen to mechanics and technicians all over the world. Spells where you can't fix anything, coming in to a mess you didn’t make, and having to put up with incompetence like missing labor hours; we want to know, is it just me? We go over some practical su…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we talk about some format changes that we are going to try with the podcast: where you guys send us in clips and we turn them into a show! We’re using an app called Speakpipe where you guys send us voicemails and we can download, edit and respond to you on the show. Erik the Producer’s Notes for Callers: The time li…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we expand the idea of the flat rate system and ask, “what would happen if other occupations were paid flat rate?” In order to make flat rate work for you as a mechanic, you need to do the repairs well, and then do them fast. This is mostly because of the fact that you aren’t going to get paid for doing it the secon…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we are diving head first into the deep end of video multi-point inspections. Right off the bat a lot of places are not paying for this service that they are expecting of their technicians, so they are going to get what they pay for a lot of the time. However, we can’t ignore the massive upside that this newfound “te…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we are talking about evolution: both as technicians individually and in regards to the cars we work on. When it comes to the cars, the amount of technological change from the first cars Uncle Jimmy was working on as a lad to where we are now is staggering and because of this, we have all had to learn a lot of thing…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we are talking about one of the things that can single you out the fastest in a shop: the can’t do attitude. As we have stated before, trying to have a good attitude in your shop is always a good thing, but we also implore you to have a “can do” attitude over a “can’t do” attitude. This will open a lot of doors prof…
 
On this week’s GTW we are a week late to the Christmas party, but that’s ok because we kinda can’t stand the music- at least the poppy remakes! We take a look at some of the craziness of 2020 and use that to set our sights on 2021, by taking a look at some of the most common new years resolutions through the eyes of an Automotive Technician. We als…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we take a deep dive into what you should expect from your employers, the job, and your fellow technicians. We take a look at new guys, and how attitude can sometimes take you further in this industry than skill alone when getting over being “the new guy.” One of the things that is expected out of all of us is that w…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy completely destroys communism faster than the apprentice who forgot to put the drain plug back in his waiter oil change. While our notion that workers should get paid more does smack of some of Marx’s more heavily Sparknoted works, we know the simple market fact that all workers are NOT creat…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we are actually dispensing useful information when it comes to getting you paid: we are talking about how to write a job story. For the purpose of this episode we are mostly talking about how to get paid the absolute most when it comes to warranty repairs. Now obviously you are going to want to document everything y…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are taking a look at your favorite department that doesn’t have any of the stuff you need in stock: parts! No, we kid, we actually do a fairly good dive on why your parts department doesn't have the parts that you need. The meat of it comes when it comes to the type of personnel that shops are getting…
 
On this week’s interactive episode of Grease the Wheels we are getting into the remote learning racket by creating a test for technicians. No need to study, this is entirely about how you approach and do your job. From being good about helping other techs, to showing up and getting right to work: there are many different ways to be a good technicia…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels, we are asking a simple question: what are your priorities? When it comes to work, for most of us in general, it's to make as much money as possible. Other days it is getting out of the building as fast as possible. We have personal priorities in addition to our career priorities, and often the two can cause conflic…
 
On this episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy completely Tarantino’s Henry Ford’s rapid expansion of the middle class by introducing the $5 a day minimum wage to his factory workers. First off, right around half of that was a wage from the work they did in the factory. The other half came from living in accordance with Ford’s own personal stand…
 
On this week’s Grease the Wheels we take a look at the job at the top of the shop food chain: the general manager. The Boss. In some cases their name is on the building, in others they are the long arm of a very large corporate entity. Either way, the buck stops and starts with them. In brand new dealerships and shops the learning curve can be seri…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we talk about one of the unseen factors that keeps us going: pride. Right off the bat, we are proud of every one of you wrench turning guys and gals who is keeping the world moving by fixing what's broken. We’re also deeply proud that you listen to this podcast and the rate at which you tell your friends…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are paying homage and telling a hell of a lot of epic stories about one of our all time favorites: the Blazer. Weather it is ripping through an apple orchard, crawling down ATV trails, or rummaging through pick-and-pulls for extra bits we loved this simple and capable truck for what it was. A truck. T…
 
On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we admit this world is kinda f***ing dangerous! As mechanics this is compounded on a daily basis just because of the sheer number of things that you work with that can seriously mess you up. Some of this stuff can mess you up instantly: wires from a wire wheel turning into shrapnel, presses turning things…
 
On this week’s (slightly delayed, sorry love!) episode of Grease the Wheels, we take a deep dive into the role of the Service Manager. What is their job, what should be their job, and what should you expect out of them are all on the docket in this slightly longer episode. When you don't get what you expect, this causes friction. This is compounded…
 
On this week's episode of Grease the Wheels, we are talking about some of the untapped potential that lies with the video multi point inspection. Some shops have them, some don't, but we feel like more shops are going to have it sooner rather than later. This is really a good thing for us, we just wish we would get paid for doing them. First off, U…
 
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