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Jiffy Lube Employee

Hey guys,
A bit of background information before I ask my question(s) - I have been employed by Jiffy Lube for a little while now. Before employment, I knew nothing of this company. Since I was old enough to drive, I have always done my own oil changes, tire rotations, and general up-keep. I never was a customer of any quick lube place because I am naturally suspicious of businesses such as Jiffy Lube. I figured since I loved working with cars, why not get paid for doing so?

It did not take me long to figure out just why people have an incredible dislike for Jiffy Lube.

Here’s what I’ve seen from my idiot co-workers:
-Forgot to add oil, seized engine
-When they don’t have your oil that they’ve already sold you, they put snake oil into the good bottles just in case you’re watching
-Canister filters destroyed, later caused major leakage
-Tire impacted onto the rotor sideways
-Tires are never torqued (often overtightened with 30 seconds of the impact wrench for each lug nut), some have fallen off of customers’ cars while driving
-When rotating tires, lug nuts aren’t put on diametrically resulting in warped rotors.
-Washer fluid placed into oil pan
-Incorrect gear oil placed into differentials.
-Regional Manager broke air filter housing
…These are just a very few of the incidents I have seen, at least one a day.

When I leave this job, and regretfully place the burning words JIFFY LUBE on my resume, will independently-owned shops (or any for that matter) disregard my application? Generally, do most shops ignore anyone with quick-lube experience? Any response is appreciated, thanks.

What I would do if I were you, ask yourself what part of the car to realy like to work on. Then go to school to learn that. Get good at one or two things and of course a good overall knowledge of the trade. And keep learning. Things change so stay on top of it. You will do just fine.

You have a understanding of right and wrong. I know the places I use have mechanics that do the right, but in looking for a job torquing every bolt might be a wrong. follow your heart, find a place you will be happy.

Well it’s always possible that someone could look at JF people with disdain but it is what it is.

When going for an interview do not bash or tell the interviewer that JF are nothing but booger eating morons. If you say anything be mature and say something like " I did not appreciate the way they do business" or something to that effect.

Thanks oldbodyman, I’m still deciding which parts to work on I like best. I can’t afford the automotive classes at my local community college at the moment but I teach myself the best I can from automotive textbooks. I’m learning new things everyday but I try to take what I “learn” at work with a grain of salt. I appreciate the words of wisdom.

You CAN afford the classes at your local community college. Go talk to the financial aid office. Where there is a will there is a way. Oldbodyman gave you some good advise…Pick an automotive specialty you like and make yourself very good at it. You will always have a good job…Today’s cars are loaded with electronics that nobody can fix…Learn how to fix electronic systems and make BIG money…It’s important that you LIKE the work you do…

I wouldn’t ignore a guy with Jiffy Lube experience, if he seemed capable and intelligent and like he enjoyed his work. Some guys think they can get a job in a garage to make ends meet until they get a real career. Some guys love this trade and the challenge and satisfaction of fixing something no one else can.

If you can stick it out with the idiots you describe for a bit while you decide on a direction you’ll be fine.

Like @Caddyman says, you’ve got to be computer literate, comfortable with electronics, able to think critcially, and willing to invest your time and money learning and bettering yourself… I watch guys fool around with compression testers and fuel pressure gauges while I diagnose problems from the driver’s seat with scan tool, labscope and pressure transducers. 20 years ago a guy I worked with said “You sure like this computer stuff, don’t you?” I said “Yes.” He said “I don’t want anything to do with it.” Guess which one of us can fix a car today?

Find a good local independent shop with a capable mechanic and try to get a job there. It’ll be the best training you can get.

Well, everyone has to start somewhere, and most everyone over a certain age has worked for a company or boss that did things that they felt were bad, morally wrong, or just plain incompetent. Or at least could have been done more efficiently. Chalk it up to experience. An employer in the automotive industry would probably look on Jiffy Lube experience the same as a restauranteur would look at fast food experience–a starting point, but not something that would sway them either way in hiring or not hiring. Most importantly it just shows that you can get and hold a job, and that you were not dismissed from it.

I think we can all point to things that are done at where we work that could be better.

I think we can all point to people that work at where we work that are unreliable, not conscientious, who violate the rules, etc.

I think JL is no exception.

Jiffy Lube or any fast lube shop is where many; maybe most auto mechanics start their careers today. Because of that, the employees can make simple mistakes. As they grow, they do not repeat their mistakes (hopefully).

And what they do on the job is also a function of their training. If they get no training, they have more problems. Problems with cars can also be minimized if a senior employee checks each car before it rolls out the door. I us a JL for my fluids, and that’s what they do. Any shop can be well managed or poorly managed.

@SadisticMagician, I suggest that if you look for a job as an auto mechanic elsewhere, that you tell them only specific issues that you did not like. Say that you want to be associated with a more professional organization. You can appreciate the experience you gained at JL and that your skills have outgrown JL.

Jiffy Lube or any fast lube shop is where many; maybe most auto mechanics start their careers today.

Maybe where you live…Here in NH…most mechanics I know of start their career in auto mechanics after they spend a couple of years at an auto tech school. A kid graduating from a decent tech school is a better hire then a Jiffy Lube employee.

As for getting a job after Jiffy Lube. … I’d create a cover letter. In the letter tell them basically what you told us.

It looks like you have the experience and knowledge to know what’s wrong and right in such an establishment.
— use THAT to hopefuly make that one shop better than the stereotype.
— use THAT on your resume’ to show you are better that that.
— use THAT knowledge to be better YOURSELF than all the co-workers who re-enforce the JL stereotype.

I know my two local JLs just absolutely hate the stereotype and try thier damnedest to outrun it every day.
This is a small town and those workers are neighbors and friends who know us all by name and are proud of the work they do.

Follow Ken’s good advice. And try to present your experience in a positive light, describing how you learned from it. Try to avoid criticizing JL, your future employer might not like that (‘wonder what he’ll say about us?’ kind of thing). I would not put the critical things down in writing, for sure.

Understand that your job at JL will be only a small part of your resume. If you choose to make a living in the field, the best approach is to check out whatever educational options exist in your area. Community colleges are great, but expensive, and while financial aid is available, it is a deferred payment loan and not free money. However, your local community college may be aware of a grant through your state.

Manufacturers also have agreements with community colleges nationwide where a student working at a dealership can often get their tuition hugely (or totally) subsidized by the local dealership. Honda calls theirs the Professional Automotive Career Training (PACT) program. I recommend checking into this option. Find out what manufacturer(s) the local college is working with, talk with the local dealership, and sell your way into the program.

Also find out what books the local college is using. Get the ISBN numbers and order copies.

Plan the aork and work the plan. Soon the JL job on your resume will only serve to show employability and reliability. Your technical knowledge will be from other places.

I’m not in the automotive field but I would refrain from bashing JL in a letter or otherwise. Everyone that you would come in contact with knows their history and employers are suspicious of people that point out issues in their former employers, which everyone has. Your experience has qualified you to start at the bottom at a repair shop or dealership doing oil changes etc. You are looking for a position that has more upward mobility than JL. That’s really all you have to tell them.

In this day and age though, I absolutely agree that a tech school is really a better place to start. For one thing, cars are getting very complicated and the successful mechanic is going to have to be able to read, write, communicate clearly, learn from and use computer equipment, and continuously re-learn. A trade school experience will help to show an employer that you are trainable in the future if not fully posessing the skills needed today.

When you move on from JL, do not speak bad of them in a job interview. Badmouthing a former employer will almost guarantee that you will not get hired. The best way to address the question is to say that you are looking for a more challenging position with a quality focused company.

And watch your back…By starting this thread on a popular forum, you will have made enemies …There are people who will try and figure out who you are by the clues you posted and they might come after you…And take Keith’s advise in the post above…

Your first job can teach you a lot. I worked at a full-service gas station and learned- from the owner- how to fail to insert an oil dipstick or power steering fluid dipstick all the way, so you could show a driver they were short and sell the same oil several times. I never did it, but I learned its always easier to get a job when you already have one, and finally- that there are ethical people out there, and eventually honest hard work gets recognized. It sounds to me like you will make it. And the gas station hasn’t been on my resume for several decades.

Its not only JF, I’ve just about fallen out with any fast service joints and a lot of regional dealership shops-strangely enough some dealers are exemperly and the occasional Tuffy Muffler or what have you are alright.So I wouldnt hold this against you if you are a personable fellow,but of course the problem is that people of your caliber are a pretty rare breed.So now I stick to what I know-Kevin

Any person who is trained and honest to me is worthy of my buisness. It is dishonesty that gets me ticked off.