Editor’s Note: We spoke with Mike Austin, the owner of Englewood Service Center with his brother Bobby. The popular auto repair business is located at 210 S. Indiana Avenue close to Dearborn Street. Please call 941-474-4900.
Mike, when did you open your business
Englewood Service Center is a family-owned and operated neighborhood mechanical repair shop and tire store that we opened on October 1, 2013.
What’s your history in auto repair
the past 30 years?
Bobby and I started in Knob Noster, Missouri in the mid-1970’s when we would repair bicycles, go-karts, mini-bikes, lawnmowers, and eventually cars. Bobby was always more mechanical, and I was focused on body, paint, and interiors. We both enlisted in the military and following our service, we opened a body, paint and mechanical shop in Maryland. After 27 years operating at multiple locations, we relocated to Englewood. Along the way, Bobby became an ASE Certified Master Tech. I obtained certifications on the body and paint side and I’ve maintained a license as a Florida insurance adjuster.
What does ASE Master Technician signify?
It means the mechanic has earned all eight certifications offered through the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). These areas include electrical systems, engine performance, automatic transmissions and transaxles, heating and air conditioning, engine repair, suspension and steering, brakes, and drive-train. To maintain the designation, technicians have to re-test every five years.
What can you share about your availability of tires?
We carry all major tire brands and offer very competitively priced economy brands that actually have better performance ratings than tires that cost twice as much. We can usually beat the tire prices offered by chain stores and online outlets.
What’s your background and how do you and Bobby manage your business?
I’ve been on the customer service counter since 1985 and this has given me a lot of insights about customer needs and vehicle repairs. As a family-owned small business, we don’t have the burden of meeting quotas or selling things that aren’t needed. We just tell our customers what we find and go from there. Bobby is more hands-on, and I’m focused on helping customers and supporting our technicians with parts and detailed repair information.
Where did you and Bobby grow up and what brought you to Englewood?
Although Bobby was born in Sanford, Florida, we grew up in a small Missouri town. We always intended on moving South and when my son got a scholarship to play football at a nearby university, we used that as our excuse to relocate. We both live in Grove City and we appreciate the opportunity to help regular and new customers.