The presenters at the 2011 Hoodie Awards couldn’t hide their shock when, for the fourth year in a row, Showroom Shine Express Detailing took home the prize for Best Detail Shop, exclaiming, “They defend it every year!” The award was no surprise to the shop’s lengthy list of regulars, a loyal group that includes professional athletes, tons of locals, and the annual Ferrari calendar’s racy centerfold car. The staff sends rides from its lot to gleam in the sunshine, or it deploys its mobile detailing team to you. The meticulous detailing packages cover cars and SUVs from bottom to top as the team members scrub tires, shampoo carpets, wipe consoles, and wash and wax exteriors. They can also tint windows, repair windshields, and clear out foggy headlights.
With more than 175 locations nationwide and more than 35 years in the business, Car-X Tire & Auto has earned a prime spot in the parking garage of quality car care and customer service. Started in 1971 by a team of seasoned muffler-shop owners, the service centers have blossomed from their beginnings as specialty exhaust shops to providers of nearly any repair or maintenance service imaginable, from installing performance-enhancing accessories to treating cars to therapeutic trust falls. In addition to promoting safety and long, healthy engine life with brake services and speedy oil changes, Car-X reaches out to the surrounding community with regular philanthropic activities, such as recycling drives and participation in the American Heart Association’s Heart Walk.
Royal Gate Dodge introduces drivers to gleaming stables of new and used Chryslers, Dodges, Jeeps, and Rams in Ellisville and Columbia, Illinois. Certified specialists stand ready at both dealerships to fix what ails a sluggish Dodge Avenger or to help a Jeep Patriot Sport remember the preamble to the Constitution. Car owners can drop off their injured autos six days a week at either service center—both are open six days a week, but the Ellisville shop closes later (11 p.m. Monday through Friday). The technicians in Ellisville also provide collision-repair services in a 14,000-square-foot facility equipped with computerized estimating systems, digital imaging, and year-round climate control.
Backed by a decade of dedicated tradition, the ASE Certified technicians at Midtown Tire & Auto extend a full compliment of services designed to smoothen out rides and lengthen the lives of all visiting vehicles. During the standard oil change, Midtown's certified mechanics replace old, worn-out oil with fresh-faced young fluid, straight from lubricant college and To help new oil adjust to its new job of safeguarding precious moving parts, a fresh oil filter is included. Technicians then rotate tires to ensure even wear and perform a comprehensive winter inspection of more than 20 key points. Brake pads, rotors, visible brake lines, battery, starter, and alternator are all checked, kicking safety and performance concerns out to the curb, where the worried worms wallow.
Since 1988, Auto Care Super Saver has been helping car owners save cash with maintenance punch cards redeemable at local auto shops throughout the course of a full year. These cards come loaded with all kinds of prepaid services, including at least three full-service oil changes with up to 5 quarts of oil, lube, and a new filter. Depending on the location, punch cards may also feature tire rotations, brake inspections, engine-light readings, air-conditioning performance tests, and other repairs and inspections essential to a car's well-being. Customers can transfer the punch card's benefits to any ride, ranging from station wagons to sports cars to feral merry-go-round mounts.
At Skyview Carwash, robotic washers and old-fashioned elbow grease collide to restore cars to a showroom shine. Vehicles zip through the sudsy tunnel for a thorough exterior wash and rinse, including spritzes of Blue Coral undersealant and triple coat and helpings of Rain-X protectant. Once exteriors are clean and shiny, car-wash attendants groom interiors by vacuuming up dirt, clearing smudges from windows, and donating old pine-tree air fresheners to the deprived lumberjacks of the world.