JONESVILLE — Got car trouble? Elkin local Jody Rushbrook has opened up a new auto repair shop just outside of Jonesville off the U.S. 21 I-77 exit across from Super 8 Motel. While his shop has only been open for a month, he already has had 60 cars come in during that time and business is picking up.
Rushbrook is no stranger to car repairs and business. He has operated three shops in Elkin during his past 20 years in the business working at Carolina Tire, Elkin CPLE, and Elkin Automotive and Lube Shop. During his time in the trade, Rushbrook built up a following in Elkin has won the best mechanics reader’s choice award twice from The Tribune.
“All three of the shops I’ve worked in before have been successful so I decided to do it for myself and my family,” said shop owner Rushbrook. “It seemed like every time I got a business making good money, my superiors would start treating me bad. I wanted to continue to serve the same people I’ve had all along. I’ve built up a good following. I turned up $700 before I was even opened. I didn’t even have power in the building.”
“I’m impressed with his accomplishments, “said Jody’s wife, Jeanette Rushbrook. “My husband’s always been successful and I believe he will succeed with this shop, too. I hope we can expand in the future. That’s what I would love to do, purchase this place and give him a permanent home.”
Jody Rushbrook is pleased with the location of his new shop. While it is a bit outside of Elkin for him, he also has been getting traffic from Jonesville and customers have been trickling in from across I-77. However, the best thing about the location, according to Rushbrook, is the interstate and the traffic it brings with it.
“I had looked at this location once before in the past. A friend of mine had a motorcycle shop that he decided to close down so I knew it would be a perfect place for it,” said Rushbrook. “It was almost like a sign from God that I needed to do this and it came together really easily. I didn’t hit many hurdles along the way. It all just clicked even though I didn’t have a lot of money to get everything together. In my mind, that made it right. I just ran away to this lobby area and cleaned it, pressure washed it, painted outside, and had the letters put on the building.”
Rushbrook’s shop is providing basic engine repairs including oil changes, break fixes, tune-ups, minor engine repairs, and basic auto repairs. He also does free checks on batteries and engine lights although deep diagnoses will require a charge.
Rushbrook hopes to eventually get more services in his shop in the future. He wants to expand his shop to do tire work and he also has ordered for an inspection machine so he can do state and safety inspections.
“I gotta crawl before I can walk and walk before I can run,” said RushBrook. “I had to get opened so I would have the basics that I needed. I’ve got room to expand for two more bays in the future. That’s one of the reasons why I like the building because it does have the potential to grow bigger. Right now my finances are holding me back as I get things rolling. In the future I’d like to see us expand and get bigger so we can do more and serve the community better.”
Rushbrook wasn’t always in the auto industry. He started out working in textiles for years as a supervisor in Wilkes, but when the textiles left the area, he found he liked working on machinery. Finding the transition wasn’t that big of a leap, he got a job at Carolina Tire changing tires. They sent him to school and he soon got his certifications and started working on cars.
“That was about 20 years ago,” he said. “I liked the jump and I’m a people person. I like serving the community. It’s something different every day. It’s a challenge and I like solving problems.”
Rushbrook’s business still has a long way to go.
“I’m a working man. I don’t gouge people or try to run this like a dealership. I serve the community who can’t afford dealership pricing so I try to be competitive but fair,” said Rushbrook. “I may give a little break here and there where the dealership won’t. Plus I allow people to bring in outside parts where other places don’t. That helps a lot of people out.”
Troy Brooks may be reached at 336-258-4058.