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  • Writer's pictureF.B.I

Feilding Automotive- 10 Minutes

Amelia- Feilding Automotive

Today I want to talk about the services we offer at Feilding Automotive, give you a bit of background on Ben and myself as well our share core values in our business. I hope my talk today will help you learn more about us a family and as a business.

Ben grew up in Opiki, the eldest of three brothers and went to Palmerston North Boys high school. After his 6th form year he decided to pursue a career as a mechanic and started a pre apprenticeship course at UCOL. From that course he secured an apprenticeship in Palmerston North and then eventually found his way to Feilding Automotive.

At that time FA was owned by Kester & Sandra. Ben completed his apprenticeship and gained his WOF ticket while working for Feilding Automotive and enjoyed life as an employee for about 7 years at the workshop. Kester and Ben starting discussing the possibility of Ben taking over the workshop – That suited Ben as he was ready for a new challenge so in December 2016 Ben became the owner of Feilding Automotive.

My background is also in skills, I began working after school at a florist shop after school in my last year of high school and when the time came for me to pick what to after school I knew I wanted to continue with Floristry. I began an apprenticeship and worked in Palmerston North for about 6 years or so. During that time I was introduced to the organisation WorldSkills. WorldSkills runs skills based competitions worldwide across a range of vocational skills.

I have been involved with WorldSkills as either a competitor or a volunteer for the past 5 years which has really had a huge impact on my appreciation for all vocational skills not just my own. Through that experience I gained a lot of confidence and decided to pursue a career in event floristry, beginning work in Auckland.

After working in Auckland as a high end event florist I returned to Feilding to help Ben with his new venture and start my own, opening my wedding and event floristry business Botanica. I now juggle my own business, helping Ben grow his and volunteering for WorldSkills International.

When it comes to non dealership workshops and non dealership mechanics people can often have a pretty bad picture in mind. They imagine a workshop that is dark, small, with old equipment and grubby grunting mechanics. This is not the case at our workshop. Our workshop is large, well lit and all our staff are friendly and presentable. In terms of equipment we have 4 bays each with a hoist including one for oversized vehicles such as caravans and one for lowered vehicles which means we have the capability to service most vehicles.

The range of work we are able to do is fairly extensive so today I want to go in to depth a little more about the common work we do for regular clients.

Firstly we do Warrant of Fitness inspections. Ben is our WoF inspector, so the boss personally checks all of our customer’s vehicles for their safety. He as well as our equipment has to meet NZTA standards. We can do WoF on Cars (including campervans, utes and vans) as well as trailers. Most people don’t like getting a Warrant of Fitness check but we really encourage our customers to understand the inspection better and change their outlook. A WoF tests all the safety features of your vehicle. Basically the point is to make sure that you, your family and other road users have fewer accidents and are safer when accidents do happen. Some of the things can be simple such as fresh wiper blades so when it’s raining hectically you can see where you’re going; right through to making sure brakes work properly and that mounts are fittings aren’t worn so everything stays where it should be.

The main other regular maintenance work we do is servicing. I like to think of a service as taking your car to the doctor for a check up. Having the oil and filter changed at regular intervals means the oil can pass through the engine and lubricate all the parts appropriately. If the oil ages it can become thick and gluggy meaning un-lubricated parts can wear on each other, leading to faults and failures.

Our mechanics change engine oil and oil filter during a service and assess the general health of your engine.

The way they do this is by checking the following:

Gear oil level & condition

Air filter

All fluid levels & condition

Washers & Wipers

Spare wheel

Steering & suspension


Battery condition

Tyre pressure

Once we have checked over everything we give you recommendations on what is coming up soon or what we recommend in the future. At bigger intervals your vehicle will need driveline servicing, transmission servicing, cooling system servicing all of which we provide. We will let you know when these will be required, what they involve as well as estimated costs.

Another service we offer is fault diagnosis and repairs. This is when you may notice an issue with your vehicle. This could be an engine check light coming on, a shudder starting or some sort of noise happening that you aren’t used to hearing. All of these things are warnings and indicators that things are working as they should be.

Faults left unchecked can lead to issues becoming more severe, costing you more time and money. By getting faults assessed early you could save yourself money and keep your family safer on the road.

Unlike large dealerships who usually work only on the make they sell our mechanics work on all makes and models of all ages so have a wealth of knowledge to help you with your vehicle issues. Not only do we have the knowledge we also have multiple scan tools to help with this process.

At all stages we will let you know what we are assessing and why so you can understand what’s going on at all times and let you know recommendations for repairs.

Some of the areas which we can repair or replace are brake faults, suspension, batteries, radiator and cooling system faults, air conditioning, engine failure, transmission issues, starting faults, as well as repairs on trailers and vehicles for WoF.

We also can supply, fit and balance tyres so if you fail a warrant for tyres we can quickly replace them for you.

When it comes to tyres if you are looking for tyres we are able to supply multiple brands and the mechanics have a lot of knowledge on what type of tyres will be best for your vehicle. Because we know most of our customers and their lifestyles we can easily recommend tyres that might suit their daily use better.

This is something we can also do with other upgrades or modifications for example outing in different suspension if you are using your vehicle off road more than on. As part of our service offer simple additions like vehicle pick up and drop off with in town as well as courtesy cars to make the whole process more convenient.

For us we want our customers to feel that our service is convenient, honest and fairly priced. We aim to be approachable and friendly – emulating the small town vibe Feilding is so known for.

Ideally we like to work with customers to maintain their vehicle rather than fixing it. We are passionate about keeping customers running well and preventing faults through proper servicing. For a majority of customers they won’t understand how their vehicle works so we try our best to explain issues that arise so they can better understand how to maintain their vehicle long term. We believe through good communication customers will have more knowledge, more appreciation for our work and the trust better our business and them will grow.

We believe the common misconception of the “dodgy mechanic” is really more about a lack of communication. There is nothing worse than picking up your vehicle from a warrant check to find a huge bill waiting for you. With each job we notify you of the relevant steps and price everything so through the whole process you know what is happening and what to expect when picking your car up.

Hopefully this gives you a better understanding of us and our business.

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