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Virginia Beach auto shop bounces back from pandemic after summer heat takes its toll on vehicles

Posted at 4:50 PM, Aug 05, 2020

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va.— After months of slowed business during the pandemic, a Virginia Beach auto shop is now hiring new employees to keep up with a surge in service requests.

Les Eldridge runs Price’s Transmission and says the business was in trouble once the pandemic hit.

"We saw a decrease in business. It was almost immediately.”

The lull didn’t last long. By mid-June, phased reopening was underway and business picked up.

Eldridge says the heatwave took its toll on transmission, and new business began driving into the shop.

“Typical transmissions don't like hot and they don't like cold, and one of those extremes with either and it affects the internal work of these transmissions," he explained.

Eldridge says people likely also have more time on their hands to come in for repairs.

Instead of three or four vehicles a day, the businesses is seeing seven or eight. The work has been so overwhelming that the shop is looking to hire new employees to keep up with the demand.

The unlikely surge in service demands also comes with an important reminder for drivers to get their transmission checked annually.

Related: Auto repair shops see backups as state inspection deadline approaches

“Everybody knows about to change your oil every 3,000 miles, but most people neglect the transmission.”

A costly mistake that could save drivers thousands in the long run.

“If you pay us a couple hundred dollars to service your transmission to keep it running, you won’t have to pay that $3,000 to $5,000 remanufacturing bill in the future,” says Eldridge.

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