The Bristol Press Wednesday, December 21, 2011 | PDF: 2011-12 Dec
CENTRAL CT CHAMBERS OF COMMERCE
By LIZ NEWBERG
Walking into Cliff’s Automotive repair after a busy Saturday morning of oil changes, tire rotation and dealing with transmissions in remission, don’t be surprised to find the owner himself relaxing over Chinese barbecue spare ribs and a cold one in the middle of his garage.
With a Chevy on one lift, a Ford truck in one of the bays and Bad Company playing on the radio, Cliff Jones relaxes with long-time customer Gene Kaczypenski.
“I’ve been coming here since 2008,” Kaczypenski said. “He took care of my car’s problem the first time. I didn’t have to keep coming back again and again for the same thin. And that’s something I can appreciate.”
That kind of customer confidence is earned over time, and Jones certainly has earned it.
“People will drive by at 7 or 8 at night and see the lights in the garage still on,” Jones said. “People rely on their cars, it’s important to get them back in their cars as soon as possible. A quick turnaround time is important. It may not always be easy to maintain, but it’s important.”
This work ethic is reflected in the homey environment of Jone’s more-than-comfortable, airy and naturally lit waiting area complete with rugs over a smartly tiled floor, leather chairs, a plush sofa, flat-screen TV, as well as free coffee and hot chocolate. It’s almost enough to make you forget you’re at an automobile mechanic’s garage.
“You wouldn’t want to come into a place that is dirty or uninviting,” Jones said. “Let alone waiting there for your car. That’s a reflection of my business, how I take care of the jobs I do and how well I do my job. So if that doesn’t look good, what are customers going to think about the service they get on their card?”
He looks at his shop as his first home, rather than just a place to go to work.
“You know how everybody says this or that is like their ‘second home’? Well, my shop is like my first home because I’m here more than I am at my own home.”
Winning “Best of Bristol” in car service for 2010 and 2011, it’s obvious what Cliff’s Automotive is a leader in its class.
While he struggles to maintain a healthy balance between work and family, often staying late to ensure the best job for his customers, his commitment to solving his customers automobile problems remains a top priority.
“I try to work to everyone’s timetable and when there’s an emergency, then I’ll be there to solve it,” Jones said.
With presentation and punctuality being paramount, Jones aims to make every customer feel at home and satisfied with a job well done. And if they hang round long enough, they may even get lunch to go with the top-rated car service. And that’s a great deal.
Cliff’s Automotive is located at 410 Main St. in Terryville, CT. The shop is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Call(860)314-9528.