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News Briefs 10/23/18

• Our commutes are getting longer. Americans spent more than 2.99 billion minutes traveling to work by car, truck or van (driving alone) in 2017 — an increase of 2.8 percent compared to the previous year, according to new U.S. Census Bureau data. Americans who carpooled spent 383.01 million minutes traveling to work in in 2017 — an increase of 0.8 percent.

• The Automotive Service Association (ASA) has announced that, beginning in 2019, AutoInc. will no longer be a printed publication. Its content will instead be delivered via AutoInc.org. In announcing the decision, ASA said: “The expense of publishing a print magazine isn’t the best use of association resources due to increasing print and postage costs and decreased advertising support.”

• The Car Care Council and AutoNetTV Media have released a video on consumers’ rights to have their vehicles serviced at any auto service and repair business they choose without affecting the warranty. It explains that, by law, independent repair shops can provide services to maintain new car warranties and that consumers are protected by the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act, which prohibits manufacturers from voiding a vehicle’s warranty because service was performed by a non-dealer.

• Matt Curry, best known for the Curry’s Auto Service and The Hybrid Shop businesses, has opened his second Craftsman Auto Care center in Fairfax, VA. The company’s new Craftsman Auto Care concept features ASE-certified Master Technicians, and centers around top technology and a high level of workmanship, tackling especially difficult repair work. The initial Craftsman Auto Care shop opened this summer in Alexandria, VA.

• The Moran Family of Brands (Midlothian, IL) has recognized the following Franchisee of the Year award winners for 2018: John Olson, who owns two Multistate Transmission shops in the Ft. Worth, TX area; Albert and Serina Daniel, who own a Milex Complete Auto Care shop in Frederick, MD and added a Milex/Alta Mere co-branded store in Boonsboro, MD; and Randy Durham, who owns an Alta Mere The Automotive Outfitters store in Plano, TX.

Jiffy Lube franchisee the Allied Lube Group plans to open six Jiffy Lube locations by the end of 2019. The company currently has 86 service centers across Texas — 47 of which are in the Houston area.

Rad Air Complete Car Care & Tire Centers has opened, in Brunswick, OH, its 11th northeast Ohio location.

Kukui Corp. has announced a partnership with the Midwest Auto Care Alliance. MWACA members will receive a 50-percent discount off the one-time Kukui set fee, a $99-discount on monthly fees, and a $300-rebate toward MWACA dues or a $300-credit toward Vision Hi-Tech Training & Expo Conference registration. This benefit cannot be combined with any previously existing Kukui benefit.

• The Timken Co. has unveiled a “Cost of Comebacks” calculator to help shop owners increase profitability and improve customer satisfaction. The Timken site also includes videos to help technicians and their customers understand the importance of using quality parts to minimize comebacks.

• The 2019 Automotive Service & Technology Expo (ASTE) is scheduled for Sept. 27-28 at the Embassy Suites in Cary, NC.