Saturdays are for fun. And family. And sleeping in. And getting your car’s oil changed.
Or not. A Highlands-based car enthusiast just found an easy way to make your weekends a lot less work: He brings his service shop to you.
“Everybody’s got a car, and everybody hates servicing it,” says Kevin Hanson, owner of Car TLC. “I like to say it’s like Jiffy Lube coming to your door.”
In addition to oil changes, Hanson and fellow mechanic Aaron Mussler strive to provide comprehensive preventative vehicle maintenance, including installation of new wiper blades, light bulbs, batteries, serpentine belts – even brake jobs, detailing and tire rotation. Says Hanson: “If it’s got oil and a filter, we’ll service it.”
A love of service and a love of things that go fast are ingrained in Hanson, who moved to Louisville from Chicago two years ago after a career as a police detective and safety educator. A lifetime motorcycle enthusiast, Hanson raced bikes and traversed the country promoting helmet and bicycle safety in schools, ultimately reaching 25,000 kids over six years. When the recession hit and corporate sponsorship for Hanson’s motorcycle team dried up, he redoubled his vehicle repair efforts.
Hanson learned the craft from his father, who instilled in him and his two older brothers the importance of learning by doing, whether when fixing a broken-down tractor or making an old El Camino hum. “We’d talk cars all the time,” he says. “I’m sure we bored our mom to death.”
His passion for cars and motorcycles led to a dealership job during his undergraduate years at Western Illinois University, and even after he became a cop he continued working on wheels. “You have people who can just change oil, and then you have people who have mechanical experience,” he says. “It’s been ingrained in me. Aaron’s dad raced cars on the weekends ... We’re not your typical car care guys.”
Car TLC isn’t your typical shop, either. In fact, its location is strictly wherever customers are – at homes, businesses, parking lots or parking garages. Car TLC’s fleet service includes after-hours maintenance, minimizing valuable downtime for backhoes, lawn mowers, tractors and semis. For regular consumers, however, Hanson and Mussler tend to keep more civilized hours, but the benefits are essentially the same. “We come while they’re at work or at home,” Hanson says. “It’s really about time and convenience.”
Streamlining service means offering convenient scheduling, which customers can coordinate through Car TLC’s website. The parts are built to last, too: “I use the same shops the dealers use,” Hanson says. “I’m not going to put on cheap stuff that’s going to break again. My goal is to keep you on the road at a reasonable price.”
Hanson and Mussler aren’t easily intimidated by what they see on the job – not even the mercurial Kentuckiana weather or antique sports car. “I’ve been around cars and motorcycles my entire life,” says Hanson, who lives in the Douglass Loop area with his wife, Christa. “It’s got a drain plug, it’s got an oil filter. It’s really not rocket science.”
Car TLC serves Louisville and Southern Indiana, with extended service up to a 30-mile radius on designated days. For more information, visit www.cartlc.com or call (502) 681-6021.