Maintenance Tips to Avoid Gas Station Repairs in Susanville

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ShellgasstationlosthillsGas station repairs are inevitable and a vital ingredient to the safety and functionality of a healthy, thriving service station environment. While there are plenty of local, state and federal regulations keeping Susanville owners on their toes, here’s some basic but helpful reminders.

Protect Your Pumps and Fight Vandalism

Gas stations and convenience stores spend hundreds of dollars per month repairing vandalized equipment. It is expensive and time consuming, but taking care to clean up dispensers, cover up graffiti and perhaps invest in protective display screen covers will improve your customers’ experience and save you money. In fact, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, studies indicate that cleaning up graffiti within 24 to 48 hours of its appearance greatly reduces the risk of recurrence! Thus, staying on top of it will keep it from coming back.

Check State & Federal Requirements on a Regular Basis

Nothing is more costly to any small business than being dinged for state and federal regulation violations. As one of the most profitable parts of the US economy, oil, gas and fuel industry regulations are constantly changing, from the top to the bottom. Sources like the US Small Business Administration (SBA) will assist you in staying current, but make sure you are checking in regularly. It is also a good idea to make sure you are consulting with a human resources associate who is well-versed on OSHA and the ever-changing Workplace Health and Safety regulations.

Build a Strong Relationship with the Experts

Gas station repairs will be needed, and it is best to seek out a service station equipment provider with whom you can establish a long-term relationship. Top caliber contracting and engineering firms know and understand the stringent regulations and standards that go hand-in-hand with developing and growing a high quality gas station. Involving them in your business early and often will benefit you, beyond getting excellent repair work.

Take Inventory Regularly

Establishing a routine of checking every piece of equipment periodically will help you catch issues early. While regulations clearly establish maintenance and inspection guidelines, building them into a daily, weekly and monthly routine ensures safety and compliance. Taking regular inventory will give you an accurate read on your profit margins and allow you to understand how much theft is taking place.

Damage and normal wear and tear will happen, but regular maintenance and upkeep will save you thousands of dollars in your Susanville gas station repairs and profit/loss every year.

Weaverville Auto Lift Installation and Repair – Putting Safety First

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Rav 7000 lb scissor liftAuto lifts allow technicians to do their job much more efficiently, but they can also lead to serious injury and property damage if precautions aren’t taken. Even if you make sure to purchase a brand new, ALI certified lift, it’s up to the technicians operating the equipment and those performing your Weaverville vehicle lift installation and future repairs to be responsible for maintaining a safe work environment. Many lift accidents that are reported are found to be the result of improper use, but these types of incidents can easily be avoided if facility owners and their employees follow the safety precautions below.

Don’t Allow Employees to Disregard Safety Warnings

When having an auto lift newly installed, it’s critical for all employees to go through extensive training before attempting to handle it, and it’s a good idea to have them take a refresher course now and then. Training should include a comprehensive overview of the safety manuals that come with each individual lift. No matter how many years of experience a technician may have, it never hurts to go over and over the ramifications of errors such as overloading, incorrectly distributing weight, failing to be aware of outdoor wind loads, not accurately positioning the contact points, etc. There is a lot of liability involved in the operation of a vehicle lift, and you must have employees you can trust not to simply disregard the safety warnings.

Stress the Importance of Utilizing Locking Mechanisms

An auto lift shouldn’t be put into use without understanding the importance of utilizing its mechanical locks. Before a technician puts a car onto a lift and initiates its ascension they should be checking to make certain they can see for themselves that the locks are engaged or using a weight gauge to verify the activation of locks. During any vehicle lift installation and subsequent repairs, always double-check that the locking mechanisms are in good working order.

Choose Lift Accessories Wisely

You may come across many different lift options and accessories on the market that claim to enhance the productivity of your equipment, but you must use discretion before adding anything to your lift that could jeopardize its performance and level of safeness. Applying an uncertified accessory can also nullify the certification of your lift since industry standards call for all lighting, rolling pads, lifting jacks, etc. to be certified.

Purchasing a brand new, ALI certified lift, holding your employees accountable and being selective in your lift accessories are important steps towards running a safe and successful business. However, it’s also crucial to continue on the same path by being careful to only hire certified inspectors to carry out your Weaverville auto lift installation, maintenance and repairs.

Fundamentals of Running a Successful Red Bluff Gas Service Station From Its Construction to Maintenance and Repairs

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tower-mart-in-redding-ca-51Because of our society’s endless need for gas, fueling facilities can almost always be counted on to be a sound investment. However, it’s still up to the owner to make sure that they take all the proper steps in order to make sure their business is successful. If you’re thinking about breaking ground on your own gas service station construction in Red Bluff, make sure you read on to get a good grasp on the fundamentals of what it takes to make a creditable name for yourself in the industry. Though the actual construction process is critical, it’s just the beginning of your new venture, and the maintenance and repairs that follow are just as important.

Choosing a Reputable Gas Service Station Construction Company

The first part of laying a solid foundation for your service station involves choosing a construction company that you can trust. Designing and planning for gas station construction is one of the most challenging and regulated types of projects. Local, state and federal compliance issues must always be kept in mind, and it takes certified and experienced contractors and engineers to get the job done adequately.

Site Selection

The most profitable fueling facilities have selected a site that is in a convenient and easily accessible location for customers. Your gas service station construction company will assist you in finding a site that adheres to regional codes, and at the same time, has the potential to see plenty of traffic come in and out.

Maintenance of Facility and Equipment

Once the development process is complete and your doors are open for business, the only way to achieve sustainability is to set up a gas service station maintenance program. Even if you have top-of-the-line products it won’t do your facility any good if they aren’t properly inspected and cared for on a regular basis. Making certain everything is clean and in good working condition will go a long way in preventing costly repairs, replacements and citations.

Timely and Professional Repairs

Likewise, as with maintenance, scheduling timely and professional gas service station repairs when found to be needed are crucial for ensuring that your business is upholding a high standard for customers as well as satisfying the requirements set forth by the industry. Broken down equipment not only contributes to an unsafe environment, but also decreases productivity and leads to downtime that will reduce your profits.

All of these components are necessary to consider if you want your Red Bluff gas service station construction to be a leading fuel source in the area. Your list for success must include a top-notch construction company, maintenance plan and repair specialists.

Basic Maintenance Recommendations For Service Station Air Compressors

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Photo of a Champion service station air compressor

Champion-Rotary-Screw-Air-CompressorAir compressors are important and valuable pieces of equipment to have in service stations and automotive repair shops, making it vital that facility owners make sure to care for and maintain them properly. In addition to scheduling periodic professional maintenance services, there are several other tasks that are recommended if you want to keep your machine in tip-top shape. Taking preventative steps will support a higher level of performance and reduce the need for costly repairs in the future.

Get to Know Your Air Compressor

Not all air compressors are designed the same nor do they have the same upkeep requirements. Your equipment will last much longer and function the way it’s supposed to if you take the time to read the material provided by the manufacturer. The manual will be full of useful information regarding the appropriate use, cleaning and other care of your new investment. Sticking to these instructions will also help to ensure that you don’t mistakenly void your warranty.

Watch For Excessive Temperatures

Air compressors are meant to be operated in regulated temperatures so as not to get overheated and cause a fire or explosion. It’s critical to know what is considered to be suitable temperatures for your machine and to be aware of how to control and prevent excessive heat by inspecting water jackets and cleaning heat exchangers on a consistent basis.

Clean and Replace Filters

Dirty air filters reduce the productivity of an air compressor, causing it to work harder and shortening its lifespan. It also begins to wear down the device when dirt and dust is allowed to accumulate within, and then you’ll have to worry about its inner workings becoming polluted.

Don’t Allow Moisture Buildup

If moisture begins to build up in your compressor, there’s a good chance it won’t be able to work as well as it should. Even if your equipment has a drain feature, it’s a good idea to make sure yourself that it’s draining thoroughly and getting rid of all leftover condensation and contaminants in the system.

Keep Fasteners Tightened

Air compressors are a moving, vibrating machine, and the more one is used, the more the fasteners that are supposed to keep it held together will start to loosen. If neglected, you may find important nuts, bolts and screws coming completely off over time, so the best practice is to check up on and tighten these components every once in awhile before too much time goes by.

Your customers and technicians expect to be able to count on safe and efficiently operating air compressors whenever they need them. Avoid expensive downtime and repairs by following the maintenance tips above.

Vital Safety and Lift Inspection Tips That Often Go Neglected By Vehicle Lift Owners

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Rotary SPOA10Vehicle lifts are big and powerful pieces of machinery, and being the owner of one makes you responsible for keeping up on its maintenance and making sure it is being correctly used at all times. Though installing a lift in your service station or automotive repair shop is one of the best ways to boost productivity and revenue, it can also bring a high level of liability if not cautiously operated and consistently inspected. The following safety tips may seem like common sense, but they still tend to go neglected in facilities far too often, especially when it comes to lift inspections.

Look For ANSI Compliance When Purchasing Equipment

The American National Standards Institute sets the guidelines for vehicle lift manufacturers, and testing by the Automotive Lift Institute ensures that equipment is in compliance before being sold to the public. This means that when you go to purchase a lift, you want to look for a certification tag that signifies it has passed the test and meets the national standard. Be advised that if you’re considering buying a used lift to save money, it’s likely you won’t know for certain if the machine and all of its parts are certified and truly safe.

Inspect Daily and Annually

Service station and repair shop owners must make sure that they are following the requirements to have their technicians do daily lift inspections before putting their equipment to use as well as scheduling annual inspections by a qualified inspector. ALI-certified professionals have taken part in and completed a program that rigorously educates and trains inspectors on proper procedures. Checking for hydraulic leaks, excessive wear, damage around the floor anchors and properly working controls, locks and restraints will decrease the chances of being caught in a dangerous situation and/or having to pay for costly repairs.

Don’t Overload

It’s essential that you do your math right when loading a vehicle onto a lift to prevent it from being overloaded. Technicians frequently fail to accommodate for heavier rear ends on vehicles and don’t think about how much weight should actually be distributed on each of the four swing arms. Both of these factors can substantially change the load capacity needed on a lift.

Train Employees

Every lift is manufactured differently, so even if you have employees that are familiar with this type of machinery and have experience using them, they should be trained and tested yearly on new features and safety precautions. If there ever comes a time that you need to prove your technicians are up-to-date on their training, you’ll have all the paperwork necessary to do so.

It’s vital that you follow each of these steps to increase your lift inspection and maintenance safety and keep your facility running securely and efficiently.

Features of Quality Fuel Nozzles For Your Service Station

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Emco-Wheaton-Vapor-Recovery-NozzleWithout quality service station equipment, you can’t expect to run a successful business, so it’s important to ensure that you select high performing supplies that will give your business a positive reputation, satisfy all your customers’ needs and save you money by operating much longer than low-grade equipment will. This is especially true when it comes to the fuel nozzles you choose to dispense a customer’s gas. Selecting the wrong nozzles can result in a disastrous situation such as overflowing gasoline, which will no doubt leave a bad impression of your company and be costly to cleanup and replace. To avoid this type of mishap from happening, invest in nozzles that have been proven to uphold industry standards so that customers can put their trust in your facility. Here are a few fuel nozzle features to consider when purchasing new equipment.

Automatic Shut-Off

For obvious reasons, the automatic shut-off of a fuel nozzle is critical. Without it, you can expect for there to be numerous customers who accidentally overfill their gas tanks every day, causing an overflow and leaving a big mess and environmental nightmare behind. An automatic shut-off relieves the customer of having to worry about getting enough gas without the risk of spilling over since the pump will automatically stop on its own when it senses liquid capacity has been reached.

Breakaway

Breakaways are designed to protect both the service station and the customer in the event that it momentarily slips someone’s mind to actually remove the nozzle from their gas tank before driving away (which occurs much more often than you would think). A breakaway device allows the hose to simply detach from the rest of the system instead of potentially uprooting the entire thing, which would leave the facility in disarray and in need of pricey repairs, not to mention the potential harm that could be done to the vehicle.

No Pressure-No Flow Shut-Off

Fuel nozzles described as no pressure-no flow require there to be pressure from the hose in order to be opened and activated and allow the fueling process to begin. If there isn’t enough pressure or if pressure is released, the nozzle will close automatically to eliminate the threat of leaks and spills.

Security pins and splash guards are additional elements to look for in fuel nozzles that will assist with customer safety and help your service station build a reputation for having the highest quality equipment around.

Considerations For Your Service Station Construction

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Mark Misc. SC Tank etc. 1-14-14 049No matter how the economy is doing overall, consumers will have a never-ending need to fuel their vehicles, making gas station ownership a great business prospect when planned out correctly. There are many things to take into consideration with any kind of new building plans, but there are even more when you’re looking at a service station construction project. Here are a few of the most important things to keep in mind as you start your venture.

The Construction Company You Decide to Work With

Most people find that the key to creating a prosperous fueling facility is the team they hire to do the actual construction. With so many details to think about, you want a construction company that has years of experience, specifically in this industry, and the knowledge to guide you through each phase of the development process. A suitable company will be able to supply you with plenty of references, offer a variety of services that will keep you from having to employ a number of professionals from different places and have a good track record of being able to deliver the finished product on-time and within budget.

The Location You Choose

Just as with any other company that’s opening, location is essential to the ultimate success of a service station. The site you choose for construction should be determined by the proximity of similar facilities, rules regarding nearby residential and commercial properties and how easily customers are able to enter and exit. Gas stations often have to find ways to manage traffic congestion, and this is best to do during the initial stages of planning before finding out too late that the space you’ve selected is inconvenient for cars to access.

Staying in Compliance With Building Codes and Permits

Another thought when deciding on a company to complete your service station construction is their awareness of current building codes, regulations and permit requirements. There’s a good chance you’ll need help sorting through all the technicalities concerning these issues and making sure you are in compliance with all local, state and federal laws.

The Equipment You Invest In

Once construction is nearing its conclusion, you’ll have to start thinking about all the equipment you’ll need to satisfy your customer’s needs and expectations. Depending on the services you decide to provide, you will want to look at fuel nozzles, hoses, pumps, air compressors, car lifts, fluid management systems, etc. You may come across what you think are good deals on used equipment, however, proceed with caution because this means you can’t be sure about quality or safety and won’t have the benefit of a warranty. The best practice is to spend a little more and invest in equipment that you know is brand new, has been tested for safety and is from a trusted brand.

This type of project can be demanding, so to ensure that your service station construction is upheld to a high standard, consider each of these categories very carefully before moving on to the next step.

Factors to Keep in Mind When Purchasing Automobile Lifts For Your Facility

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Rotary SPOA10Obtaining all the right equipment is one of the most critical steps necessary for operating a successful service station or automotive shop. Without efficient and reliable tools you won’t be able to provide the services and repairs that your customers expect to receive when they come to your facility. Automobile lifts are among the most important kind of equipment needed, but making sure you invest in just the right one for your particular business takes careful thought. There are many elements to consider before making your final purchase.

Brand New vs. Pre-Owned

Cost is always a major factor when it comes to any part of running a business, and it’s no different when looking to buy an automobile lift. Some service station and auto shop owners make the mistake of trying to save money by acquiring used vehicle lifts instead of investing in new ones, which greatly increases the risk of ending up with unsafe and poorly maintained equipment. It’s also important to consider the lack of a warranty when purchasing a used lift. The smartest idea is to shop around for a deal that won’t make you compromise safety or budget.

Manufacturer Reputation

A manufacturer’s reputation will give you a good indication of what you can expect in regards to their product’s durability, longevity and safety. Finding a company with a solid reputation for designing and producing trustworthy automobile lifts should weigh heavily on your decision. Manufacturers who build positive customer relationships through exceptional customer service and support is also significant for this particular type of purchase. The less downtime your facility has to experience when you have a problem, the better.

ALI Certification

It’s always good to search for a car lift that is proven to be ALI (Automotive Lift Institute) certified. This means it has been properly and thoroughly tested for safety and met specific standards. It isn’t all that simple to find lifts with ALI certification, but it should be something you keep in mind and give preference to when you are able to locate one.

Type of Lift

There are numerous types of automobile lifts that you’ll come across on your hunt for the one that will be most suitable for your business. The kind of services and repairs your facility offers, your frequency of use and the particular style of motor vehicles that you work on will help determine the lift model you’ll need.

Garage Dimensions and Specifications

Of course, whichever lift you decide on must actually be able to fit within the space allotted. Don’t neglect to measure the area you intend to have the vehicle lift installed in to ensure ample room to work efficiently. You’ll need to bear in mind a few things such as the lift’s width, base size and rise.

When investing in such valuable equipment for your service station or automotive shop, choose to work with a company that has extensive knowledge about automobile lifts and can guide you through the process of selecting the perfect fit for your facility.

The Basics on Air Compressor Sales, Maintenance and Service

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Photo of a Champion service station air compressor

Champion Air Compressor HRA15-12Air compressors are a useful piece of machinery for people to consider investing in personally and industrially for a variety of reasons, however, when it comes to making sure your service station is equipped with all the right tools, it’s not just a good idea to purchase an air compressor but an absolute necessity.

Air Compressor Sales

The design of air compressors has come a long way over the years. No longer a bulky, slow-running machine, these units play a significant role in helping service stations meet the demands of drivers. If your facility is in the market for a new air compressor system, there are a few things to keep in mind while you shop around, including model type, weight, capacity and quality. Be sure to invest in air equipment products that you and your customers can consistently rely on.

Air Compressor Maintenance

Drivers everywhere count on being able to pull into a service station at any given time and inflate their tires or blow dirt and debris out of their engines as needed. In order to satisfactorily serve your customers, you must have equipment on hand that operates efficiently at all times, but without regular upkeep, you may not be able to tell if something is working right or not until it’s too late. By creating an air compressor maintenance plan that is managed by a professional company, you will be able to count on consistency, reliability and increased productivity. Precautionary inspections should include checking out the pump oil level, oil leaks, air leaks, drain water in tank, belts, bolts and air filters, unnatural noises or vibrations, the safety relief valve, etc. Preventative maintenance takes away the burden of costly repairs or system replacements as well as unexpected downtime.

Air Compressor Service

An annual in-depth air compressor service is generally recommended since it’s inevitable for normal wear and tear to take place over the course of the year. Whether you need a routine service call or actual repairs, it’s important that you hire a company with trained staff that specializes in air compressor service for a variety of makes and models to ensure the job is done effectively. Keeping your equipment running at peak performance requires having the proper tools, parts and knowledge.

When your service station offers everything a customer could need in one place, including high quality, easy-to-use and well-maintained air compressors, they’re sure to keep coming back again and again.